This publication is a self-assessment tool to help organisations understand their balance sheets and achieve service efficiencies and improvements.
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Effective balance sheet management can generate efficiencies and reveal unrealised service potential in underutilised assets.
Compliance with current financial standards demands that balance sheets are constructed using high quality information about the service delivery potential of the assets held by public service organisations.
This information in turn allows better asset management and exposes the potential to use assets as leverage to build effective partnerships. This is especially important at a time when the fiscal environment constrains the revenue resources of public service organisations.
Given the importance of the balance sheet for securing the long term financial sustainability of any organisation, these decisions must be based on high quality information. An organisation that manages its balance sheet well is less likely to make accounting errors and to suffer financial loss or reputational damage.
But to ensure that at the same time it provides timely management information, local authorities in particular need to prepare balance sheets more quickly and to consider the production of balance sheet information in their in-year budget monitoring information.
Also in this publication is a question based self-diagnostic tool that allows organisations to first gain a closer knowledge of their balance sheets and critically evaluate whether their management processes match the importance of its assets and liabilities for the sustainability of the organisation. It also includes a powerful analysis tool to identify the areas where greatest focus is required for improvement.
Effective balance sheet management promotes stronger communications between finance and operational teams and can enhance decision-making by ensuring that the full financial implications of decisions are taken into account.
This edition is vital for public sector finance professionals, but other senior managers and directors (executive and non-executive) will be keen to see their organisations' performance optimised through its adoption.
This publication is only available online.
The digital, online version is available as both searchable HTML and a bookmarked downloadable PDF of the publication that can be shared throughout your organisation. Customers will need to register and login to CIPFA’s website to access the publication.
Details of licensing arrangements for other categories of purchaser, which includes those organisations operating shared service arrangements, are available from CIPFA’s Publications Department.
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