Accountability and Governance for Arm’s Length Bodies

"I really enjoyed the course and learned a lot. Brian was an excellent trainers and he pointed me in the right direction to deal with other challenges which are of importance to my NDPB in our drive to drive safe economic growth."

Health and Safety Executive

For those in newly appointed board member and senior staff positions working within Arm’s Length Bodies, an introduction to accountability is vital as these roles require a working knowledge of how ALB’s interact with government, and for employees to have a full appreciation of their duties and responsibilities.

Designed to give participants the knowledge needed to effectively support their accounting officer within an Arm’s Length Body, this one-day Accountability and Governance for Arm’s Length Bodies training course addresses all the essential aspects of delegate’s new roles including the role of the Accounting Officer, the audit and risk assurance committee, the board and current government policy.

The programme is led by a trainer who has considerable experience in the ALB sector and has delivered over ninety tailored training courses to Arm’s Length Bodies throughout the UK. The programme is also continuously updated to ensure that it remains reflective of the real-time issues that delegates are facing.

Accountability and Governance for Arm’s Length Bodies is a signature training course within our Accountability & Governance series and is one of our best-selling programmes. At Civil Service College, we pride ourselves on our ability to tailor our programmes to each delegate, ensuring that courses are applicable to attendee’s role and organisations so that each delegate can get the most from the training. Our courses and trainers are constantly updated and evaluated to ensure that we are always delivering the best service possible.  

Key features:

  • The role of the Accounting Officer
  • The rationale for ALBs
  • Current government policy
  • The oversight role of the sponsoring department
  • The Board
  • The audit and risk assurance committee
  • Current developments in ALB governance

Designed for:

This training course on Accountability and Governance for Arm’s Length Bodies is suitable for newly appointed Board Members across Arm’s Length Bodies, Non-Executive Board Members of NHS bodies, Senior Managers working in the ALB sector, as well as those working in the Civil Service in sponsoring departments who wish to gain a better insight into their responsibilities with regard to oversight of all aspects of ALB governance.

Learning Outcomes:

Participants will gain a deeper understanding of the relationship between ALBs and their sponsoring departments, the opportunity to focus on public sector governance and accountability arrangements and how these might differ from a private sector entity as well as a better understanding and appreciation of the governance responsibilities of board members and senior managers (including the Accounting Officer).




10:00 - 16:00


£595 + VAT


St James’s Park, London


12 September 2019 Book5

24 October 2019 Book8

In-House Option

This course is available In-House and can be tailored to meet your individual training requirements.


Lead Trainer

Brian Whalley OBE

Brian Whalley OBE

With over 10 years of experience in training senior management and board members, Brian is one of the most experienced and authoritative trainers in accountability, governance and financial management in the UK.

Read Bio
Brian Whalley OBE

Brian Whalley OBE

Brian regularly provides induction and board development programmes for non-executive board members of government departments, executive agencies, Non-departmental Public Bodies, NHS bodies and public corporations. He has run programmes for over 100 Non-Departmental Public Bodies, and other Arm's Length Bodies, and is experienced in working in all UK jurisdictions.

Brian has written guidance material on numerous governance topics such as the management of conflicts of interest, as well as a guide to working in central government for newly appointed non-executive board members of government departments.

On an international level, Brian has delivered programmes on accountability, governance and financial management in Macedonia, Abu Dhabi, Russia, Hungary, Poland and the Turks and Caicos Islands.

Brian is a qualified management accountant (ACMA), has a teaching qualification, and holds an MA in Management Learning.


‘A Guide to Propriety for RDA Board Members’, Department of Trade and Industry

‘Working in Government: A Guide for Non-executive Board Members of Government Departments’, Cabinet Office


  • Qualified management accountant (ACMA)
  • Holds a teaching qualification
  • MA in Management Learning, University of Lancaster 

In this Series

Public Accountability for New Accounting Officers

"This was probably the best course I have attended, packed with relevant information."

Welsh Government

“One of the best courses I have attended in the last twenty years - The day has flown by and I would happily have come back tomorrow!”

Ministry Of Defence

Tailored in-house training

Civil Service College can deliver In-House training within your organisation that is exactly tailored to meet your individual training requirements.

Book a course

Call 020 8069 9000 to take your booking or for advice on choosing the right course for you.

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