Public sector organisations must tackle many complex and interconnected challenges. In recent years, we have seen the impact of funding reductions, rising and shifting patterns of demand for services, and external shocks such as the COVID-19 pandemic.
Whatever difficulties present themselves, public bodies need to keep delivering. Even in the most difficult circumstance, finance professionals must focus on continuity, ensuring they go on providing vital services to their citizens and communities.
Forward-looking, strategic financial planning can help organisations lock in resilience for the long term. A clear line of sight on risk and mature understanding of likelihood and impact allows leaders and managers to focus in on what matters most and support good decision-making.
What are the challenges?
In working towards increasing financial resilience, public sector organisations are faced with a number of hurdles.
Over a decade of austerity and the impact of COVID-19 have significantly impacted the provision of services and, as inflation rises, the real value of budgets is further impacted.
Shifting income sources
Income sources and funding for public sector bodies have been severely challenged by the pandemic. This makes strategic planning even more complex when planning how services need to be delivered.
Changing demand patterns
Increasing demands on services, growing care costs, and changes to how we live and work as a result of the pandemic demonstrates the need for constant adaption in the provision of public services.
Supply chain challenges
Rising demand for services creates pressure throughout the supply chain – from initial product procurement through to service delivery.
The ongoing threat of bribery and corruption
Heightened by economic and social distress, as well as by increasing digitisation, the threat of fraud is increasing. A focus on fraud prevention is therefore key to help build financial resilience.
How can CIPFA help?
CIPFA is a membership and educational body that equips our members and students, as well as other public finance professionals, with the tools to deliver best-in-class public financial management throughout their career.
With a range of solutions, CIPFA can help your organisation increase its financial resilience through:
- Our educational programmes: ensuring people have the right skills to manage and adapt to ever-changing financial risk scenarios and embed robust financial management across their organisations.
- Our data analytic tools and range of professional and technical guidance: enabling organisations to better understand their current position and work through to an optimal position.
- Our advisory teams: supporting your organisation to transform and future-proof your finance functions and service delivery through collaboration - helping to make your plans robust, sustainable and achievable.
For further information on how we can help visit our sections on:
Our micro modules are free of charge and offer quick introductions to selected topics. Prepared by CIPFA’s subject matter experts, they deliver key information in an easily digestible, online format.
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For the full list of our available micro modules, visit www.cipfa.org/training/micro-modules