Reminder December Finance Network Meeting – | ‘The Finance Function as a Business Partner’

Find out all the details of the next Finance Network meeting on Wednesday 7 December which will cover the topic ‘Finance Function as a Business Partner’.

A quick reminder that on Wednesday 7 December from 11:00 – 12:30, the monthly Finance Network meeting will welcome Simon Hopkins, Director of Finance and Corporate Resources at Versus Arthritis, who will give his perspectives and insights on the ‘Finance Function as a Business Partner’ and the importance of strategic leadership, especially in the current operating environment. Find out full details below, including how to book your place.

Simon is a regular columnist for Charity Finance magazine, a visiting speaker on the Inspiring Financial Leadership programme at Bayes Business School and was the originating author of Charity Finance Group’s development model, The Finance Journey.

If ever there was a need for strategic leadership of charities, that time is now, and Simon will discuss the demands on Finance teams to support critical leadership decisions which trustee Boards are facing. It promises to be an inspiring session.

Book your place!

To book your place at the meeting (or to request a copy of the slides and the recording if unable to attend on the day), please click here.

You will see a brief confirmation on screen once you have submitted your registration form. You will not receive a confirmation email.

The Teams Meeting Link and Joining Instructions will be sent to you directly by the Financial Governance Team nearer the time of the event in the usual way. So please fill in the form using the above link ensuring your contact details are correct, book out the time in your diary and watch out for the Teams Meeting Link email – thank you.

Save the date for the January Finance Network Meeting

Then on Wednesday 25 January, we will welcome the return of Nick Wilkie, former charity Chief Executive and current Chair who teaches and consults at The Centre for Charity Effectiveness at Bayes Business School. Nick’s subject will be ‘In an outlook of increasing demand, spiralling costs and falling income, what can, should and must charity leaders do next?’

Adamant that there are no magic answers and equally adamant that he doesn’t have any, Nick will, however, think out loud about how leadership teams and boards might face the winter(s) ahead.

Many of you will remember Nick’s presentation to the January 2022 meeting, when he thought out loud about Big Plans, Strategy and Business Models. The 25 January session is likely to be equally stimulating, so book the date in your calendars now. We’ll share the registration form nearer the time.

Cost Recovery and Sustainability Decisions Workshop – 14 December 2022

Find out all the details of the latest cost recovery and sustainability workshop from Age UK’s Financial Governance Team.

This is a quick reminder that Age UK’s Financial Governance Team are hosting a second half-day practical workshop on cost recovery and sustainability decisions. The workshop will take place online on Wednesday 14 December and will start at 10:00. Please read on for full details, including how to book your place.

On 2 November, the Financial Governance team delivered a half-day workshop, primarily for Service Managers within Brand Partners, via Teams, in which we worked through practical examples of the full cost recovery calculation process and then showed how to calculate the breakeven point for a service. This is the point at which total income for that service equals total costs, so that any further sales / income represents a direct contribution to reserves.

Such was the demand for places on that workshop, we are running a second session on Wednesday 14 December, starting at 10:00. We anticipate completing the workshop by 12:00 but could overrun to 12:30 if necessary.

While once again Service Managers are the primary target, CEOs, members of Partners’ SMTs and interested trustees will be very welcome to join. We are not placing any limitation on the number of attendees per local Age UK.

All those on the waiting list for the November workshop have been included on the attendee list for this event, and so do not need to book their place, but please do let us know if you are now not able to attend – john.fox@ageuk.org.uk.

Book your place!

To book your place at the meeting, please click here.

You will see a brief confirmation on screen once you have submitted your registration form. You will not receive a confirmation email. The Teams Meeting Link and Joining Instructions will be sent to you directly by the Financial Governance Team nearer the time of the event in the usual way.

So, please fill in the form using the above link ensuring your contact details are correct, book out the time in your diary and watch out for the Teams Meeting Link email – thank you.

Upcoming Finance Network Meetings

If you are interested in attending the cost recovery workshop, you may also wish to attend our upcoming Finance Network Meetings for December and January.

Find out all the details here.

Practical workshop on Cost Recovery and Sustainability Decisions – 14 December 2022

Find out all the details of the latest cost recovery and sustainability workshop from Age UK’s Financial Governance Team.

Age UK’s Financial Governance Team are hosting a second half-day practical workshop on cost recovery and sustainability decisions. The workshop will take place online on Wednesday 14 December and will start at 10:00. Please read on for full details, including how to book your place.

On 2 November, the Financial Governance team delivered a half-day workshop, primarily for Service Managers within Brand Partners, via Teams, in which we worked through practical examples of the full cost recovery calculation process and then showed how to calculate the breakeven point for a service. This is the point at which total income for that service equals total costs, so that any further sales / income represents a direct contribution to reserves.

Such was the demand for places on that workshop, we are running a second session on Wednesday 14 December, starting at 10:00. We anticipate completing the workshop by 12:00 but could overrun to 12:30 if necessary.

While once again Service Managers are the primary target, CEOs, members of Partners’ SMTs and interested trustees will be very welcome to join. We are not placing any limitation on the number of attendees per local Age UK.

All those on the waiting list for the November workshop have been included on the attendee list for this event, and so do not need to book their place, but please do let us know if you are now not able to attend – john.fox@ageuk.org.uk.

Book your place!

To book your place at the meeting, please click here.

You will see a brief confirmation on screen once you have submitted your registration form. You will not receive a confirmation email. The Teams Meeting Link and Joining Instructions will be sent to you directly by the Financial Governance Team nearer the time of the event in the usual way.

So, please fill in the form using the above link ensuring your contact details are correct, book out the time in your diary and watch out for the Teams Meeting Link email – thank you.

Upcoming Finance Network Meetings

If you are interested in attending the cost recovery workshop, you may also wish to attend our upcoming Finance Network Meetings for December and January.

Find out all the details here.

Finance Network Meeting – 7 December 2022 | ‘The Finance Function as a Business Partner’

Find out all the details of the next Finance Network meeting on Wednesday 7 December which will cover the topic ‘Finance Function as a Business Partner’.

On Wednesday 7 December from 11:00 – 12:30, the monthly Finance Network meeting will welcome Simon Hopkins, Director of Finance and Corporate Resources at Versus Arthritis, who will give his perspectives and insights on the ‘Finance Function as a Business Partner’ and the importance of strategic leadership, especially in the current operating environment. Find out full details below, including how to book your place.

Simon is a regular columnist for Charity Finance magazine, a visiting speaker on the Inspiring Financial Leadership programme at Bayes Business School and was the originating author of Charity Finance Group’s development model, The Finance Journey.

If ever there was a need for strategic leadership of charities, that time is now, and Simon will discuss the demands on Finance teams to support critical leadership decisions which trustee Boards are facing. It promises to be an inspiring session.

Book your place!

To book your place at the meeting (or to request a copy of the slides and the recording if unable to attend on the day), please click here.

You will see a brief confirmation on screen once you have submitted your registration form. You will not receive a confirmation email.

The Teams Meeting Link and Joining Instructions will be sent to you directly by the Financial Governance Team nearer the time of the event in the usual way. So please fill in the form using the above link ensuring your contact details are correct, book out the time in your diary and watch out for the Teams Meeting Link email – thank you.

Save the date for the January Finance Network Meeting

Then on Wednesday 25 January, we will welcome the return of Nick Wilkie, former charity Chief Executive and current Chair who teaches and consults at The Centre for Charity Effectiveness at Bayes Business School. Nick’s subject will be ‘In an outlook of increasing demand, spiralling costs and falling income, what can, should and must charity leaders do next?’

Adamant that there are no magic answers and equally adamant that he doesn’t have any, Nick will, however, think out loud about how leadership teams and boards might face the winter(s) ahead.

Many of you will remember Nick’s presentation to the January 2022 meeting, when he thought out loud about Big Plans, Strategy and Business Models. The 25 January session is likely to be equally stimulating, so book the date in your calendars now. We’ll share the registration form nearer the time.

Reminder: November Finance Network Meeting | ‘Budgeting: Fit for your purpose in uncertain times’

A reminder of the next Finance Network meeting on 16th November which will cover the topic ‘Budgeting: Fit for your purpose in uncertain times’.

There’s still time to book your place at the next Finance Network meeting on 16th November from 11:00-12:30. Matthew Tait and Katie Cooper (BDO) will present on the subject ‘Budgeting: Fit for your purpose in uncertain times’. Find out full details below, including how to book your place.

By 16th November, Partners will be looking to have their performance figures to 30th September available – the halfway stage in the financial year. Whilst we would always advocate regular reforecasting throughout the year, the halfway stage results present the golden opportunity to take actions if performance is not on-track. It’s also the right time to start thinking about the next financial year and attempting to ensure that the last few months of the current financial year lead seamlessly into next year’s plans.

We cannot think of a more turbulent time to be setting budgets and plans than now, although perhaps the 1970s, with the 3-day week in 1973, introduced by Ted Heath and then the 1978/9 ‘Winter of discontent’ of James Callaghan’s government, come close. However planning ahead is still hugely important and we’re sure that Matthew and Katie will give us all plenty to think about.

Book your place

To book your place at the meeting, or if unable to attend on the day, to request a copy of the slides and the recording, please click here.

Please ensure you complete the form accurately, particularly your email address.

You will receive a brief confirmation once you have submitted your registration form. The Teams Meeting Link and Joining Instructions will be sent to you directly by the Financial Governance Team nearer the time of the event in the usual way. So please fill in the form using the above link, book out the time in your diary and watch out for the Teams Meeting Link email – thank you.

Finance Network Meeting – 16 November 2022 | ‘Budgeting: Fit for your purpose in uncertain times’

Find out all the details of the next Finance Network meeting on 16th November which will cover the topic ‘Budgeting: Fit for your purpose in uncertain times’.

The next Finance Network meeting will take place on 16th November at the usual time of 11:00, when Matthew Tait and Katie Cooper (BDO) will present on the subject ‘Budgeting: Fit for your purpose in uncertain times’. Find out full details below, including how to book your place.

By 16th November, Partners will be looking to have their performance figures to 30th September available – the halfway stage in the financial year. Whilst we would always advocate regular reforecasting throughout the year, the halfway stage results present the golden opportunity to take actions if performance is not on-track. It’s also the right time to start thinking about the next financial year and attempting to ensure that the last few months of the current financial year lead seamlessly into next year’s plans.

We cannot think of a more turbulent time to be setting budgets and plans than now, although perhaps the 1970s, with the 3-day week in 1973, introduced by Ted Heath and then the 1978/9 ‘Winter of discontent’ of James Callaghan’s government, come close. However planning ahead is still hugely important and we’re sure that Matthew and Katie will give us all plenty to think about.

Book your place

To book your place at the meeting, or if unable to attend on the day, to request a copy of the slides and the recording, please click here.

Please ensure you complete the form accurately, particularly your email address.

You will receive a brief confirmation once you have submitted your registration form. The Teams Meeting Link and Joining Instructions will be sent to you directly by the Financial Governance Team nearer the time of the event in the usual way. So please fill in the form using the above link, book out the time in your diary and watch out for the Teams Meeting Link email – thank you.

Paid-for Services and VAT – Guidance and Support

A reminder of the VAT guidance and support available, particularly regarding paid-for services such as Lasting Power of Attorney and Wills.

With its ever-widening scope; constantly updated regulations and case law governing; plus the onerous demands of HMRC; VAT is notoriously complicated. This message is a quick reminder of the VAT guidance and support available to local and national Age UKs, particularly regarding paid-for services such as Lasting Power of Attorney documents and Wills.

A local Age UK recently reported a concern regarding the VAT welfare exemption related to certain paid-for services, in particular Lasting Power of Attorney documents and Wills. As a result, they are currently working through the potential liability – what they will have to payback to the HMRC – which goes back over the last four years.

With that in mind, we would actively encourage all Age UKs delivering or developing a Lasting Power of Attorney and/or Wills service to take professional advice and/or use the VAT Helpline to seek clarity on your position and to ensure you are compliant with VAT rules. This may also provide an opportunity for you to assess your wider VAT status, particularly in relation to other new services you may be delivering and/or looking to develop, whether paid-for, grant-funded, or under contract, etc.

If you would like to learn more about paid-for services and VAT there is guidance and support available below:

The VAT helpline can be contacted by email AgeukVAT@crowe.co.uk or by calling 0207 842 7499. VAT information is also available on the finance support and guidance pages of the loop here.

If you are having any trouble accessing the loop, please contact: theloop@ageuk.org.uk.

Reminder: October 2022 Finance Network Meeting – “The Importance of Good Financial Governance”

The next Finance Network Meeting will take place on Wednesday 26th October from 11:00 to 12:30 and will focus on the topic “The Importance of Good Financial Governance”.

A quick reminder that the next Finance Network Meeting will take place on Wednesday 26th October 2022 from 11:00 to 12:30. The meeting will cover the very topical subject of ‘The Importance of Good Financial Governance’ which will be presented by Judith Miller, a Partner in Sayer Vincent, leading auditors and advisers to charities and social purpose organisations. (Financial Governance here includes relevant financial controls and also good reporting practices, for trustee boards and for SMT use.) Find out full details below, including how to book your place.

We will also be joined on the day by Angela Croucher, Finance Director at Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove, who will share some of her perspectives on Good Financial Reporting for the trustee board.

Both topics are very relevant because we are all living in very uncertain times right now – having come through the worst of the pandemic, we are now facing unprecedented challenges in the form of the cost-of-living crisis, spiralling energy costs (albeit now thankfully capped, but for how long?), inflation, staff recruitment and retention issues and radical changes in the funding landscape. If ever there was a time for trustees to ensure good financial governance in their organisations and to be receiving clear and informative financial reports, that time is surely now.

The pandemic impacted on the Network in varying ways and to different degrees. Many Brand Partners have found new ways to reach clients, adapting working practices to address new circumstances – in particular, by making greater use of technology. This will bring its own set of challenges and it is important that local Age UKs ensure their financial controls and governance processes are fit for purpose and have kept pace with these changes.

According to the Charity Code of Governance, a charity is best-placed to achieve its ambitions and aims if it has effective governance and the right leadership structures. ‘Skilled and capable trustees will help a charity attract resources and put them to best use.’

But effective financial governance carries more challenges because many trustees won’t have been recruited for their financial skills and may not feel confident about finance. Some may be over-reliant on others who have more experience to take the lead on financial matters, or they may engage in an inappropriate level of detail when effective financial management means looking at the bigger picture and longer-term sustainability of the charity.

This can be helped or hindered by the financial information with which trustees are presented. Do reports help them to understand the drivers of financial sustainability and explain, in simple terms, the charity’s position on results, cash, and reserves?

So as a trustee, or a member of the SMT, are you sufficiently up to speed with the present financial position of your charity? Are you able to consider the best way forward for the charity at this time of huge financial and economic challenge? Are you able to show the leadership which good governance demands of trustees?

Book your place

To book your place at the meeting, or if unable to attend on the day, to request a copy of the slides and the recording, please click here.

You will receive a brief confirmation once you have submitted your registration form. The Teams Meeting Link and Joining Instructions will be sent to you directly by the Financial Governance Team nearer the time of the event in the usual way. So please fill in the form using the above link, book out the time in your diary and watch out for the Teams Meeting Link email – thank you.

October 2022 Finance Network Meeting – “The Importance of Good Financial Governance”

The next Finance Network Meeting will take place on Wednesday 26th October from 11:00 to 12:30 and will focus on the topic “The Importance of Good Financial Governance”.

The next Finance Network Meeting will take place on Wednesday 26th October 2022 from 11:00 to 12:30. The meeting will cover the very topical subject of ‘The Importance of Good Financial Governance’ which will be presented by Judith Miller, a Partner in Sayer Vincent, leading auditors and advisers to charities and social purpose organisations. (Financial Governance here includes relevant financial controls and also good reporting practices, for trustee boards and for SMT use.) Find out full details below, including how to book your place.

We will also be joined on the day by Angela Croucher, Finance Director at Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove, who will share some of her perspectives on Good Financial Reporting for the trustee board.

Both topics are very relevant because we are all living in very uncertain times right now – having come through the worst of the pandemic, we are now facing unprecedented challenges in the form of the cost-of-living crisis, spiralling energy costs (albeit now thankfully capped, but for how long?), inflation, staff recruitment and retention issues and radical changes in the funding landscape. If ever there was a time for trustees to ensure good financial governance in their organisations and to be receiving clear and informative financial reports, that time is surely now.

The pandemic impacted on the Network in varying ways and to different degrees. Many Brand Partners have found new ways to reach clients, adapting working practices to address new circumstances – in particular, by making greater use of technology. This will bring its own set of challenges and it is important that local Age UKs ensure their financial controls and governance processes are fit for purpose and have kept pace with these changes.

According to the Charity Code of Governance, a charity is best-placed to achieve its ambitions and aims if it has effective governance and the right leadership structures. ‘Skilled and capable trustees will help a charity attract resources and put them to best use.’

But effective financial governance carries more challenges because many trustees won’t have been recruited for their financial skills and may not feel confident about finance. Some may be over-reliant on others who have more experience to take the lead on financial matters, or they may engage in an inappropriate level of detail when effective financial management means looking at the bigger picture and longer-term sustainability of the charity.

This can be helped or hindered by the financial information with which trustees are presented. Do reports help them to understand the drivers of financial sustainability and explain, in simple terms, the charity’s position on results, cash, and reserves?

So as a trustee, or a member of the SMT, are you sufficiently up to speed with the present financial position of your charity? Are you able to consider the best way forward for the charity at this time of huge financial and economic challenge? Are you able to show the leadership which good governance demands of trustees?

Book your place

To book your place at the meeting, or if unable to attend on the day, to request a copy of the slides and the recording, please click here.

You will receive a brief confirmation once you have submitted your registration form. The Teams Meeting Link and Joining Instructions will be sent to you directly by the Financial Governance Team nearer the time of the event in the usual way. So please fill in the form using the above link, book out the time in your diary and watch out for the Teams Meeting Link email – thank you.

September 2022 Finance Network Meeting – One week to go!

There’s one more week to book your place at the next Finance Network Meeting on Wednesday 21st September from 11:00 to 12:30. This meeting will focus on the topic “Maximising Property Potential and Protecting Property Assets”.

A quick reminder that the next Finance Network Meeting will take place in a week’s time on Wednesday 21st September 2022 from 11:00 to 12:30. Nick Sladden, Partner, Head of Charities at RSM and William Ray, Partner in the operational Real Estate Department of Gerald Eve will present on the topic ‘Maximising property potential and protecting property assets.’ Find out full details below, including how to book your place.

As you know, property, be it owned or leased, is a key part of a Brand Partner’s organisation. Be that for service delivery, administrative, trading or investment purposes, having a property strategy and determining how to optimise your property holdings should be an important consideration and subject to review on an annual basis.

Against a backdrop of rising inflation, increasing costs and higher interest rates – plus Brand Partners working and delivering services in different ways post pandemic – it is also essential to regularly reflect upon how your property strategy can positively impact on your charity and its current and future beneficiaries.

In broad outline, the presentation will cover the following areas:

  • Property strategy and how it relates to reserves management
  • Tax considerations
  • Accounting options including valuations
  • Overview of regulatory requirements and recent changes
  • The importance of good estate / property management

The session is open to all relevant management, staff and trustees in Local Age UKs and Cymru Partners involved in making strategic decisions, managing and safeguarding the organisation’s property assets. So please share this information with colleagues in your organisation who you feel would be interested in attending.

This will be an opportunity for colleagues from across the network to reaffirm and update their knowledge and to raise questions on this important topic from the specialists at RSM and Gerald Eve to obtain further insight and guidance.

Book your place!

Please note the new booking process directly through Microsoft Forms. To register your attendance, and / or to subsequently receive a copy of the recording of the event and the slides, please register using this link.

Also please note the following – you will receive a simple ‘thank you’ for responding once you have submitted your registration form. The Teams meeting link and joining instructions will be sent to you directly by the Financial Governance Team nearer the time of the meeting in the usual way.

So please fill in the form above, book out the time in your diary and watch out for the email – thank you.