New further education programme for Chief Financial Officers

As demands on the further education sector rise, the need for FDs and CFOs to step forward is clear. ICAEW have announced today (29 March 2017) that they have been commissioned by the Education and Training Foundation (ETF) to deliver a programme that will deliver a step change in the ability of CFOs in the sector to partner with their CEO to drive strategy forward.

In 2014/15 the further education (FE) commissioner’s annual report identified that 14 of the 17 interventions were due to financial concerns. The Annual Report, and update letters from the Commissioner identify a number of themes including inadequate financial analysis of new projects, inappropriate planning and lack of board understanding of risks and performance. These issues, combined with additional challenges across the sector today highlight a need for further training and development.

Further education CFO programme:

With a strong component of practical learning, the further education CFO programme aims to help FE sector finance leaders become commercial leaders. Delegates will develop the leadership mindset required for:

  • delivering their institution’s strategic objectives sustainably and in the public interest
  • build a forward-looking and resilient finance function
  • generating a profitable and sustainable growth for their institution

Stephen Ibbotson, ICAEW Director of Business explains:

“The role of the CFO is evolving. CEO’s and company boards are placing increasing demands on CFO’s and their finance teams to provide fact based insight to enable the business to make strategic decisions. The introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy in April, and the advent of an insolvency regime all add to the complexity and challenge of a financial director’s role. The further education sector needs financial directors who are inspiring, forward-looking, commercial leaders. I look forward to working with the Education and Training Foundation to build finance leaders of the future who can tackle these challenges faced by the sector.”

Sir Frank McLoughlin, ETF Director of Leadership, said:

“The CFO has been under-rated and under-supported as a key figure in the success of further education. The ideal CFO will support the strategic direction of the organisation by bringing their specific skills and expertise to bear. They must understand the complexity of managing multiple and diverse funding streams, and the additional skills required to operate within complex group structures and partnership arrangements. Financial and business acumen will support financial stability, high quality teaching, and good learner outcomes. We are delighted to be working with the ICAEW on this vital programme.”

For more information for Finance Directors and CFOs in the sector, please email Michael.harwood@etfoundation.co.uk
Media enquiries:

Contact details: Caroline Florence, ICAEW press office on 020 7920 8564 or email caroline.florence@icaew.com or Stephen Cox, ETF on 07976 373553 or email stephen.cox@etfoundation.co.uk

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