ICAEW have today announced they will be offering a further education CFO programme to help finance leaders become commercial leaders who can partner strategically with the CEO.
The programme will involve a strong component of practical learning and aims to help CFOs develop the leadership mind-set required for delivering strategic objectives sustainably and in the public interest, build a forward-looking and resilient finance function and generating profitable and sustainable growth.
The training has been commissioned by the Education and Training Foundation (ETF) after the 2014/15 further education (FE) commissioner’s annual report identified that 14 of the 17 interventions were due to financial concerns.
Some of the themes identified in the report include inadequate financial analysis of new projects, inappropriate planning and lack of board understanding of risks and performance.
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.”
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.