13 July

Please note that all speakers, content and timings are subject to change

12.15 – 13.00 Lunchtime session – Accounts Closedown – big red button

Speaker: Don Peebles

Closing the annual accounts continues to be a pressurised process for local authorities.  Reduced staffing levels, changes to reporting requirements, new service delivery models and, for English authorities, shortened deadlines from 2017/18 onwards all contribute to the challenge of firstly producing a Code-compliant Statement of Accounts and then navigating a smooth and efficient audit.  This session will look at how CIPFA is developing its support for authorities through these key processes.  In particular, this will include:

  • CIPFA’s new partnership with Ernst & Young, offering an assured managed closedown service: An outsourced solution that is fully staffed, secure, confidential, reliable and trustworthy.  We’ll talk about how the service works and can be tailored for you.
  • CIPFA’s new reporting solution, CIPFA Closedown: This cloud-based package takes data from your ledger and other key sources and combines it with your narrative inputs to produce the Statement of Accounts at the “press of a button”.  It integrates project and workflow management functionality with automated audit trails to produce a Code-compliant document with significantly reduced staff input.  We’ll talk about key design features and the implementation process, and how you can get involved.

13.30 – 14.30 Concurrent workshops 1A-1D – Choose one special interest concurrent session

WORKSHOP 1A – Developments in Public Sector Budgeting and Forecasting

Sponsored by: Advanced


Chair: Alison Scott, Head of Standards, CIPFA

Speakers: Steve Mawson, Assistant Director – Finance, Doncaster Council

Chris Tidswell FCPFA, Head of Corporate Partnerships, CIPFA

A recent survey in association with CIPFA highlights budgeting and forecasting as key areas that are being reviewed and developed by Public Sector finance organisations. This topic is particularly relevant given the financial climate and the need for robust financial planning and reporting. Officers and elected members continue to be challenged to make sound decisions based on these processes and the information they provide. Attend this case study led session to learn how other public sector organisations are successfully tackling this area.

WORKSHOP 1B – Aligning Public Services – how modern technology supports collaboration, best practice management and helps deliver real efficiency savings

Sponsored by: Unit 4


Chair: Mandy Bretherton, Technical Manager, Policy & Standards, CIPFA

Speakers: Paul Marriner, Global Head of Government Advisory, Unit4

Phil Beaumont, Principal Consultant (Public Sector), Unit4

Peter Borley-Cox, Head of Business Transformation, LGSS – wholly owned by Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire County Councils and Milton Keynes Council

This session will review the challenges facing Public Service organisations in meeting the demands of ever tighter funding.

It will highlight a case study of how such organisations can work together, to agree common strategies and standardise processes.

The session will also identify how some key trends in technology such as machine learning and predictive analytics can deliver better quality financial and operational information to support decision making.

WORKSHOP 1C – Emerging risks – perception becomes reality

Sponsored by: Zurich


Chair: Keeley Lund, Technical Manager, Professional Standards, CIPFA

Speakers: David Forster, Head of Risk, Zurich Municipal

Sarah Pearson, Strategic Risk Practice Leader, Zurich Municipal

In 2015 we started to see local authorities putting their radical plans into action. Changes started to materialise at a breath-taking pace and local authorities as we knew them began to evolve. 2016 has continued along a similar path and even picked up further momentum.

We are conducting further interviews this year to feed the next edition of our senior managers risk report and look forward to sharing some of the initial insight we have received.  We will also look at the emerging risks, share some practical examples of how these are being managed and discuss what the future looks like for the traditional local authority.

WORKSHOP 1D – Society of District Council Treasurers – current key issues

Chair: Rob Bridge, Second Vice President, SDCT

Speakers: Angela George, Secretary, SDCT

Guy Clifton, Director, Grant Thornton

Paul Dossett, Grant Thornton

Lee Geraghty, LG Futures

Rupter Dewhirst, LG Futures

This workshop aims to be a practical and interactive session where District finance professionals can hear the latest thinking and discuss their concerns on some of the key issues facing them. In particular the latest thinking on Business Rates Retention, Devolution issues and Efficiency Plans will be discussed.


15.10 – 16.10 Concurrent workshops 1E-1H – CHOOSE ONE SPECIAL INTEREST CONCURRENT SESSION

WORKSHOP 1E – Double Benefits: Using e-invoicing to reduce costs and trap fraud in the public sector

Sponsored by: Basware (with CIPFA CFC)


Chair: Cliff Dalton, Head of Local Government Faculty, CIPFA

Speakers: Amabel Grant, UK Managing Director, Basware and Head of the UK National eInvoicing Forum

Arjun Medhi, Technical Development Manager, CIPFA Counter Fraud Centre

Jennie Williams, TITAN, the North West Regional Organised Crime Unit, Cyber Protect Officer

Recent research suggests that the benefits of moving to e-invoicing are widely acknowledged across the UK public sector, yet uptake is still relatively slow. But outdated paper-based processes are leaving councils and government departments at risk of fraud and errors in the Accounts Payable process.

The same research goes on to reveal that almost half of UK public sector organisations have been targets of invoice fraud, or paid a duplicate invoice, in the last 12 months. This equates to £147 million of losses a year – a hefty sum that needs addressing, particularly in the current tough financial climate.

WORKSHOP 1F – A walk through the process of getting a rating and issuing debt

Sponsored by: Moody’s Public Sector Europe


Chair: Roshana Arasaratnam, Vice President – Senior Credit Officer, Moody’s Public Sector Europe

Speakers: Lynton Green, Director of Finance and Information Services, Warrington Borough Council

Jennifer Wong, Senior Analyst, Moody’s Public Sector Europe

Bryony Harrap, Associate Director, Traderisks

This workshop discusses the process of getting a bond rating as part of accessing the capital markets for long term financing. Public sector issuers in many European countries have increasingly tapped into funding from capital markets, particularly in the UK where Housing Associations, Universities and recently Warrington Borough Council have been active in the capital markets. In Germany, the UK and France, Quantitative Easing has reinforced the conditions for low cost bond market issuances. Capital markets also provide diversification in funding sources.

WORKSHOP 1G – Empower my staff or close my service?

Sponsored by: ERPaaS


Chair: Lisa Forster, Network Advisor, CIPFA

Speakers: Martin Ferguson, Director of Policy & Research, SOCITM

Simon Robinson, Managing Director, ERPaaS

Tony Summers, Director of Advisory Services, SOCITM

This workshop considers the impact of Digital Mobile Services and Cloud ERP on Public Services. With a huge prize in terms of cost savings and efficiencies, and the opportunity to transform your organisation, find out about the size of the prize and where the quick wins and major savings can be obtained. Hear about what it means practically for you and your service.

Consider the organisational impact and leadership decisions facing senior officers and members about the nature of the organisation they will be laying down for the next decade. Understand the barriers and consequences of failing to progress. Hear about the leadership challenges posed by these new technologies. This challenging and imaginative workshop will provide an answer to these questions. More importantly it will also help you to understand your relationship with the impact of digital mobile self-service and with the public services that you lead.


Chair: Jayne Stephenson, Chief Finance Officer, Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Greater Manchester

Speakers: John Holden, Director of Research, New Economy

Julian Cox, Deputy Director of Research, New Economy

David Ottiwell, Principal Researcher, New Economy

Part of growing any business or economy has to be about making the right investment decisions when considering alternative ways of working or delivering services.

In a new world of collaborative arrangements between agencies and authorities it’s becoming essential to have business modelling which can identify the fiscal, economic, and social value of project outcomes, and specify which public agency sees this benefit.

Whether it’s social care, criminal justice or health all areas of public sector are having to work through how services can be better funded and delivered by partnerships.

This workshop will demonstrate how the CBA methodology developed by New Economy with assistance of HM Treasury Greater Manchester ensures that decision making is robust and takes account of the most up to date research.

14 July


The implications of a Brexit will be far reaching the public services. From the fiscal impact of a faltering economy, loss of structural funding, to the availability of skilled work force in critical areas like health and social care, the ramifications of leaving the EU may end up being the final straw for already hard pressed public services.

As the debate rages on we are holding an emergency workshop to consult with senior public service leaders to ensure their concerns are fully reflected as CIPFA lobbies to secure a fair deal in any future negotiations.

Invitation only

08.30 – 09.15 Breakfast workshop – Developing your ideas, influence and voice

Dawn Reeves, Writer in Residence, CIPFA

This is a practical and creative workshop designed to support members to influence thinking and future direction in the public sector.

It will cover: coming up with ideas; developing a distinctive and authentic voice; and how to get attention. CIPFA want to support members to become thought-leaders, write articles and blogs and think creatively.


Chair: Paul Woolston, Vice Chairman, CIPFA

Speakers: Richard Harrison, MD of CIPFA’s New Advisory Service

Ian Briggs, Corporate Director, Acivico Ltd

Mike Gregson, Head of Commercial, Acivico Ltd

Michelle Hartin, Development Director, Essentia

With continuous financial constraints, growing demand and citizen’s rising service expectations, public services are increasingly being delivered through new and complex vehicles.

There are many innovative options for delivering services such as trading companies, joint commissioning partnerships, shared services, staff mutual and joint ventures.

Proposals for new devolved combined authorities will also require transformation in how organisations and practitioners operate, as well as the need to develop a greater commercial culture, policies and procedures.

All offer potential opportunities but also challenges and complexities of their own.


WORKSHOP 2A – Shared Working, Allocated Risks

Sponsored by: Arthur J Gallagher


Chair: Jane Payling, Head of Health and Integration Faculty, CIPFA

Speakers: Tim Devine, Managing Director – Public Sector & Education, Arthur J. Gallagher

Mandy Knowlton-Rayner, Insurance and Risk Lead,  Lincolnshire County Council

Councillor Abdul Jabbar, Deputy Leader and Finance Portfolio Holder, Oldham Council

As public services reach for further transformation, how can shared resources be effective without damaging an organisations identity?
Using two organisations that have already been through transformational change together with Risk Financing specialists, Arthur J Gallagher, this interactive workshop will review the barriers to change that are likely to be put in place and develop solutions to break them down to achieve greater efficiencies.

An understanding of the potential savings and efficiencies if shared functions are created.
Breaking down the barriers to creating effective shared services. The potential risk issues to consider.

Workshop 2B – The new audit landscape for local government

Sponsored by: Mazars


Chair: Rob Whiteman, Chief Executive, CIPFA

Speakers: David Aldous, Director, NAO

Gareth Davies, Partner, Mazars LLP

Jon Hayes, Chief Officer, Public Sector Audit Appointments

Alan Gay, Deputy Chief Executive, Leeds City Council

Keeley Lund, Technical Manager, Professional Standards, CIPFA

Local government external audit is about to go through its biggest change in a generation.  The workshop could examine some of the key issues:

  • Ensuring that Audit Committees are fit for their new purpose
  • The options for procuring external audit (opt into sector-led procurement, collective vs individual, framework contracts vs bespoke procurements)
  • How will the new arrangements secure a choice of competent suppliers, assure quality, monitor auditor independence, handle disputes?
  • Audit arrangements for different models of devolution and partnership working

WORKSHOP 2C – Don’t slip or trip on insurance fraud: making savings through preventing and detecting insurance fraud

Sponsored by: Zurich


Chair: Rachael Tiffen, Head of Counter Fraud, CIPFA

Speaker: Phil Sapey, Technical and Development Manager, Counter Fraud Centre, CIPFA

Is insurance fraud an existing or emerging fraud risk and is your council managing it? This workshop will offer an overview of the national fraud statistics on insurance fraud, carried out by the CIPFA Counter Fraud Centre (CFC), informed by the CFaCT. The key area of the session will be best practice tips for investigating and preventing insurance fraud from Zurich Municipal, one of the founding partners of the CFC.

WORKSHOP 2D – Investing in the future – risk and reward £7.4bn to invest – Lets make sure we spend it wisely

Chair: Mike Ellsmore, Chair, CIPFA Pensions Panel

Speakers: Paul Woods, Director of Finance,North East Combined Authority

Ben Lucas, Managing Director, MetroDynamics Ltd

Knowing what you are aiming to achieve with your strategic investment strategy is just the starting point in this session. Let our three speakers share their knowledge and experience and you will benefit by gaining greater insight into:

• regional investment funding opportunities and challenges
• the criteria for assessment
• considerations around the prioritisation process
• using leverage to invest
• pressures on the pension pot