The Year Ahead: 2016 What To Expect - Management

What now after Olive Cooke and the collapse of Kids Company?

Kids Company
Kids Company

The new year is likely to involve more of the same: dealing with financial pressures, working on strategy and managing the uncertainty of the funding environment.

Last year was dominated by two negative stories: the fundraising scandal after the death of Olive Cooke and the collapse of Kids Company - the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee's report on Kids Company is due soon.

Sir Stephen Bubb, chief executive of Acevo, says Kids Company has been a "warning for all charities about the need for effective leadership and good governance". But despite the gloomy financial outlook, he adds, there are still some opportunities to "deliver differently and better"; and some government reforms, such as those to prisons and rehabilitation, could offer opportunities to charities.

Paul Palmer, professor of voluntary sector management at Cass Business School, says 2016 will be "the year of the trustee". Greater accountability for chief executives is likely, and trustees will take on more responsibility, especially in fundraising and finance.

Generally, financial pressure is coinciding with increasing demand on charitable services. Charities continue to report being asked to do the same work for less money, which might require innovative tactics, such as social enterprise, crowdfunding and loans, or reliance on reserves.

If the gap between private and third sector wages continues to grow, charities fear they will lose out on skilled recruits, especially in London and other major cities. The National Living Wage, which will start in April at £7.20 an hour for workers aged 25 or over, will also put pressure on some charities' budgets, especially in the care sector.

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