Slough Borough Council’s finance division to have a serious restructure

Struggling Slough Borough Council’s finance division is ready to bear a restructure. The deliberate transfer has been designed to create a ‘stronger and extra sustainable base’.

The native authority has been closely reliant on interim employees inside the division. And the brand new plans define goals to position employees in additional everlasting positions and roles.

Slough Borough Council was successfully declared chapter in July. The native authority then introduced in chief finance officer Steven Mair and his ‘A-team’ of finance officers on an interim foundation to repair the money issues.

READ MORE: Commissioners drafted in to repair Slough’s monetary disaster cost over £1k a day

On account of historic accounting errors, the council has overborrowed and overspent massively the place it’s needing to promote as much as £600m-worth of its belongings and make £20m financial savings yearly till 2029 to remain afloat. The Chartered Institute for Public Finance and Accounting and exterior auditors Grant Thornton have reviewed the council’s finance staff and really useful it invested extra considerably within the division and improve its capability.

The council has a excessive variety of interim senior-level employees inside the division, costing the council hundreds of thousands of kilos. Between October and December alone, the council spent practically £2m on non permanent finance officers. Roughly 50 per cent of employees inside the division are everlasting staff of SBC, which creates a ‘vital danger’ if stored this fashion.

However council bosses now have a plan to spend money on the division and add extra everlasting employees to cut back the reliance on interim staff. It’s proposed to extend the council’s 61 staffed finance staff by six extra employees members. The restructure additionally provides extra senior posts to convey ‘nice management, path, and functionality’ as officers work to stabilise the council within the subsequent three to 4 years.

In contrast with native authorities comparable in dimension, the city would have extra finance officers working for them. Alongside this, the council has ‘ambition’ to have one of many ‘greatest finance capabilities in native authorities’ the place employees ‘really feel proud’ to work for the council. There’s additionally ambition to ‘develop their very own’ inside the division.

The council can also be eyeing so as to add 23 extra everlasting employees inside its inner audit, business, and anti-fraud division, taking the brand new finance construction to 90 staff. The restructure is ready to happen this autumn and to conclude in November, which the report says the timeline is ‘difficult however achievable’. As soon as this reshuffle is full, it is going to be reviewed post-2025/26.

The finance division presently prices over £7m however in 2023/24, it might be diminished to £5.5m to cater for the brand new construction. This £1.6m drop used for the brand new construction and transitional prices might be funded by monies from the sold-off belongings as agreed by the Division of Levelling Up, Housing, and Communities.

Senior councillors are to think about the restructure programme at a cupboard assembly on Monday, June 20.

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