Beyond the balance sheet

To assess likely success in the long term, it is vital to look at the organisation as a whole and how it is run.


Financial difficulties are often symptomatic of an organisation’s culture. How it approaches planning, manages staff, monitors performance, and exercises good governance all contribute to how well it performs financially or not and the charitable impact it has.

This session is designed for senior managers in foundations. The aim is to provide participants with an understanding of the importance of the overall “control environment” and what might be the warning signs to look out for when assessing organisations for the first time and during routine monitoring. 

All the activities mentioned above fit within, what we can describe as, a “control environment” or “control framework”.

What do we mean by controls?
“A control in its simplest form is an action/activity which increases the likelihood of achieving the charity’s objectives and provides a safeguard against something going wrong. Controls can be both preventative and detective.” All this will be explained in more detail during the workshop.

Why do we need controls?
- To maximise the impact a charity can have
- To safeguard the assets of the charity and ensure their continued use for the benefit of 
the charity
- To protect the interests of beneficiaries, staff and trustees
- To help the charity run effectively and retain a good reputation

This half day workshop is designed to provide participants with an understanding of these themes and what might be the warning signs to look out for when assessing organisations for the first time and during routine monitoring of funded organisations. It includes an opportunity to work through case studies and practical examples. During the course of the workshop we will build up a practical checklist that participants can take away with them.

By the end of the workshop participants should:
- Understand the importance of controls, how these are wider than basic financial 
controls and reflect the operating environment and culture of the organisation
- Identify how an appreciation of controls can fit into your own monitoring process
- Spot warning signs in applicants/funded organisations

 This event will take place online. A Zoom link will be sent 48 hours before. 

Time: 1.00pm - 4.30pm 


Sayer Vincent 

Non-members are welcome to attend this event if they meet the criteria for ACF membership.

If you would like to discuss access requirements, please contact [email protected] 

Please note that this event might contain discussions of sensitive topics or information.