Supporting the Accounting Officer

Supporting the Accounting Officer is an in-house course within our popular Accountability & Governance series. At the Civil Service College, we tailor our courses to each attendee’s role and organisations, ensuring that each participant gets the most out of the training. Our courses and trainers are continuously updated and evaluated to ensure that we are always delivering the best service possible. 

Key Training Features

Who Can Attend

Learning Outcomes

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Key Training Features:

  • A reminder of the key features of the role of the ALB Accounting Officer;
  • The essentials of Managing Public Money as they apply to ALBs;
  • Current government policy regarding the rationale for, and departmental oversight of and relationships with, ALBs;
  • Key aspects of ALB governance including the Audit and Risk Assurance Committee;
  • Practical case studies regarding regularity propriety and value for money;
  • The scrutiny roles of the National Audit Office (NAO) and the Public Accounts Committee;
  • Relationships between the executive team and the ALB board;
  • The role of the ALB board;
  • A comprehensive round-up of current guidance.

Who Can Attend:

This highly practical programme is designed to appeal to senior leadership teams in Executive Agencies, Non-Departmental Public Bodies, Non-Ministerial Departments and unclassified public bodies, and provides an update on current developments in public accountability (including the role of the Accounting or Accountable Officer), governance requirements for ALBs, recently issued guidance and amendments to Managing Public Money, and current policy regarding the relationship between ALBs and their sponsor department.

Learning Outcomes:

Attendees will gain a deeper understanding of:

  • the rationale for ALBs and current insights from Parliament, the NAO and Cabinet Officer regarding the relationship between ALBs and their sponsoring departments; 
  • public sector governance and accountability arrangements and how these influence the role of senior executives and non-executive board members.

We will describe in detail the role of an ALB accounting Officer with particular emphasis on the need for reliable assurance and the role of senior managers in supporting the Accounting Officer(particularly with regard to setting the tone and establishing a culture of compliance).

The course will also cover current parliamentary expectations regarding the proper conduct of public business (incorporating regularity and propriety) including illustrations and case studies based on organisations that have failed to comply with the standards expected of central government bodies, recent pronouncements from Parliament and the NAO relating to ALB governance; and newly issued guidance relating to ALB governance and accountability.

Visit the CSC Bookstore in partnership with award-winning publisher Kogan Page, offering materials in print books, eBooks and accredited soft skills eLearning courses. SAVE 15% on all Kogan Page books and ‘Creating Success’ eLearning Courses with KPCSC15. We also offer institutional savings too, just get in touch!




10:00 - 16:00


Available to be delivered In-House. Contact us for a quotation.


Face to face or virtual

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

Brian has over 10 years of experience in training senior management and board members on accountability, governance and financial management.

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 

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