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Time and Resource Constraints Emphasised by the Risk of Staff Turnover

It is no hidden secret that, compared with similar departments in other industries, school Finance and Administration teams are quite often understaffed and on tight budgets. Under these tight resource constraints they are expected, often unknown by the school community at large, to achieve the completion of unique reporting and data requirements and manage large campus facilities, ever-developing IT networks, and complex compliance requirements. Behind the students’ classroom, schools are indeed multi-million dollar businesses!

Add to this operational environment the current challenges presented by the pandemic disruption and ‘great resignation’ turmoil, and the school sector is facing serious recruitment and staff resource challenges.

So, what solutions are available to schools to address these challenges?

In an Australian service culture of franchises and outsourcing, we are all familiar in our homes or businesses with the concept of contracting out tasks that we either don’t have the skills or time to complete ourselves. However, in the school sector we seem to be adverse to doing the same and believe we have to keep everything internal to the school business administration or somehow fit it into our already overloaded working schedule! What we encourage school Business Managers and their teams to do is to accept that they neither have the time, resources or skills onboard to do everything excellently and to analyse their activities between on-site, collaboration and outsource.

Onsite – Where local knowledge or stakeholder interaction is required. Use unique team skills and develop relationships with community, students and staff.

Collaboration – Group support services, collaborate with organisations on shared sites, use church/school groups and associations. This creates benefits like efficiency, economy, flexibility and resilience.

Outsourcing – Completion of transactional and compliance tasks, things you have to do but don’t want to do! Benefit from the expertise of industry best-of-practice. Creates the ability to reassign onsite resources to areas needing attention or meet objectives previously neglected. The added value for schools and Business Managers is that teams are not bogged down with compliance and administration but instead use resources to develop and innovate.

Kenton Newall joined the Cole School Experts team in January 2019 to help drive the growth of the business and support services offered to schools. He has significant experience in a range of professional fields embracing his training as a professionally qualified accountant and experience in management and most recently as a Business Manager in an independent K-12 school. Kenton has spent more than 20 years in various commercial, client-services and not-for-profit businesses, improving the effectiveness of systems, increasing business performance and instigating strategic planning processes. This business experience, mixed with the services offered by the Cole School Experts team, means Kenton can work with clients to find solutions and systems to support their needs.