Setting schools' strategic direction
Working with UK-based Governors for Schools, CIMA is encouraging its members to use their financial expertise to set the strategic direction of local schools in England and implement best practice in an advisory role.
Governors are responsible for overseeing the management side of a school in terms of strategy, policy, budgeting, and staffing. They enable their schools to run effectively, working alongside senior leaders and supporting teachers.
Paul Turner, regional vice-president for UK and Ireland at the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants, said: "Our members have a great skillset for these roles, and many go beyond their day jobs to give back to their local communities in this way. Being a governor also provides a great opportunity for management accountants to test and develop their skills and knowledge in a new environment."
The average time commitment is around six to nine hours per month, including one governing body and one subcommittee meeting per term, as well as a termly visit to the school during the school day.
Governors for Schools connects schools across England with those interested in governor roles. For further information, please visit governorsforschools.org.uk.
The duty to notify
CIMA members and registered students have a duty to observe the highest standards of conduct and integrity, and to uphold the good standing and reputation of the profession. They must also refrain from any conduct that might discredit the profession.
Under Part I, Regulation 19, Duty to Notify, you must inform CIMA if you sustain any of the following: a disciplinary sanction from any body or tribunal, being found guilty of an offence by any court, being declared bankrupt or made subject to a bankruptcy restriction order or undertaking, or entering into an individual voluntary arrangement or disqualification from acting as a director or trustee.
It is essential that if you are subject to any of the above, you notify CIMA within 30 days at email@example.com. Otherwise, you may be liable for disciplinary action.
Members and students also have a duty to report misconduct under Byelaw 11. Any member or student who has broken the Institute's laws should be reported. Misconduct by members and students, including criminal convictions, can be a risk to the public and a risk to CIMA's reputation. If you become aware of another member or student gaining a criminal conviction, you have a duty to report it to CIMA, which will investigate the matter.
Byelaw 11 states: "A Member or Registered Student shall report to the Institute any facts or matters which cause him reasonably to believe that another Member or Registered Student may have been guilty of misconduct as defined by Byelaw 1 and when considering making such a report shall have regard to guidelines issued in this connection by the Institute."
CIMA's charter, byelaws, and regulations can be found in the Members' Handbook at cimaglobal.com.
Finance takes lead on public-sector change
A recent joint report by the Association and CIPFA (the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy) looks at how finance supports and enables local government transformation. Transformation: How Finance Teams Are Driving Local Government Innovation is the final part of a series of reports exploring four research themes: transformation, technology, transparency, and talent.
Local government transformation covers wide areas, from change management and new models of service delivery to partnership working and innovative approaches to financing. The report says that to support and enable transformation, leaders must ensure that they and their teams collectively have the right skills, capabilities, technology, and organisational knowledge to succeed.
The report was co-written by the Association's Rebecca McCaffry, FCMA, CGMA, associate technical director, management accounting, and Lori Sexton, CPA, CGMA, senior technical manager, management accounting. McCaffry said: "The business of local government is far from straightforward. Local government organisations must juggle fiscal, geographical, and demographic challenges while at the same time addressing the demands of their many political, regulatory, citizen, and business stakeholders."
She added that in an era where "doing more with less was now the new normal", finance professionals were taking the lead on transformational change.
Read the report at cgma.org/government.