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Civil Servants Guide to Budgeting

Please contact us for details of future dates

An interactive hands on day exploring techniques and requirements for building and managing a budget, as well as profiling, forecasting, re-forecasting and variance reporting.

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand Parliament’s role including estimates and votes
  • Understand what a budget is and what it is used for
  • Understand the different budgeting techniques available, including zero budgeting, bottom up, top down, full and activity costing
  • gain an insight into what challenge rounds are
  • Learn how to defend your budget
  • Understand the relationship between budgeting and HM Treasury CSR and Spending Review requirements
  • Learn the art of profiling and gain tips on how to achieve accuracy
  • Understand what forecasting is, and how to do it accurately
  • Learn how to re-forecast and undertake regular variance reporting


09:45  Welcome and Introduction
Financing public services
  • How public services are finance
  • Ongoing trends
  • The current financial situation
  • The impact on budgeting practices
What is budgeting for in Government?
  • Purpose of a budgeting system
  • The link with planning and strategy
  • The nature of a budgeting system
  • Budgeting systems in Government – Resource Budgeting
  • The role of programme budgeting in Government
  • The importance of budgeting in an era of austerity
  • Case study: Developing a budgeting system
Budgeting in action
  • Developing a budget – different methods
  • Weaknesses of traditional approaches
  • The challenges of financial austerity
  • The need for cost information
  • Defending a budget
  • Budget enhancements
  • Case study: Developing a budget in a time of austerity
Recap and review of course
Close  16:30

Please note that the programme is subject to change without notice