Executive Recruitment

Investing in our Future

The delivery of our strategic priorities, both now and in the future, is only possible with a sustainable financial position and an attractive portfolio offering.

A recent fall in student numbers combined with regulated fees staying at £9,250, whilst costs continue to rise with inflation, has placed significant pressures on our finances.

The Securing Our Future programme was designed to ease some of this pressure by targeting savings of £20m over a three year period. This has been challenging in a number of respects, but thanks to the hard work of colleagues across the University we managed to achieve this target.

However, as is the case for many universities, the pandemic has had a significant and detrimental impact on our finances and ability to recruit students.

A clear priority is to ensure our financial stability and this will require us to take some further difficult decisions. But the next few years must also be about preparing the organisation for the future of learning, teaching and, research and enterprise with quality and building on our strengths as the foundation of all that we do.

In light of our position in external league tables and the prominence of the NSS, we are exposed to the strong competition for applicants from across the sector. So, a key enabling component to all of this, is to ensure we have an attractive, sustainable and high-quality portfolio offering, ensuring the future shape of our portfolio capitalises on our strengths and aligns best with market opportunities across all levels of study.

This strategic area has two delivery workstreams:

  • Investing in our Future: Financial Sustainability Workstream (led by Mike Bewlock)
  • Investing in our Future: Portfolio Development Workstream (led by Stephen Dudderidge).

These priorities will be delivered by the two workstreams listed above, both as part of the Brighton 2025 Programme. 

Our priorities for this strategic area

  • To stabilise the University’s finances and return to generating a cash surplus as soon as possible
  • To develop a corporate financing plan, which delivers the objectives of Brighton 2025

Delivering these priorities:

This strategic area has two delivery workstreams:

Workstream 1

1: Investing in our Future: Financial Sustainability Workstream

  • This workstream will deliver on the strategic priorities for the Investing in our Future strategic area. It is one workstream in the broader Brighton 2025 Programme
  • This workstream is led by the Investing in our Future Group, chaired by Mike Bewlock, Director of Finance

Workstream aims and objectives

  • To develop and recommend a corporate financing plan which acknowledges the current financial challenges, the investment needed to achieve Brighton 2025 objectives, existing operating constraints, potential funding opportunities and financing requirements and options
  • To review and recommend changes to the University’s financial resource allocation and budget management processes to ensure that these meet the needs of Brighton 2025 and support the financial sustainability of the institution
  • To identify activities and operations to review in relation to achieving potential cost reductions or efficiency and to commission projects to realise agreed target levels of savings
  • To develop and recommend an investment management process to ensure that the University is appropriately directing its resources to meet and realise it’s agreed priorities and objectives
  • To review key internal control policies to ensure that there remain fit for purpose and are consistent with the priorities and objective of Brighton 2025
  • To determine the key financial performance indicators against which success of the Group’s work will be assessed.

Workstream 2

2: Investing in our Future: Portfolio Development Workstream

  • This workstream will deliver on the strategic priorities for the Investing in our Future strategic area. It is one workstream in the broader Brighton 2025 Programme
  • This workstream is led by the Portfolio Development Group, chaired by Stephen Dudderidge, Registrar and Secretary

Workstream aims and objectives

  • Consider and develop proposals for the refocusing of the undergraduate and postgraduate portfolio and redesigning provision to better align with market opportunities
  • To consider, review and monitor subject area health
  • To identify potential areas of growth – both in regard to new or refocused course provision and student profile (e.g. realistic UK, EU and International student expansion) including different delivery modes and partnership working
  • Devise a communication and engagement strategy with our staff (and students) to support portfolio review and development
  • Review the course structures and associated costs of academic programme delivery to ensure efficient and financially sustainable models