Using a Teams Planner Board as a project management tool for audit evidence

NHS Norfolk & Waveney ICB

The problem

The finance team needed to track the progress of the tasks arising from the HFMA financial sustainability self-assessment checklist. A system for collecting audit evidence in a timely, accurate and efficient way was needed. At the same time, delegated budget training was put in place to ensure budget managers  have the skills and knowledge required to manage their budgets.

The challenge

How might we complete the self-assessment and provide all supporting evidence to our internal auditors, TIAA LTD, for review so that NHS England can be assured that any areas of weakness have been identified and solutions implemented to strengthen processes?

How might we roll out delegated budgets including training to budget managers so that they can confidently manage their budgets?

The outputs

  1. A comprehensive report from TIAA LTD delivered to the audit committee in compliance with NHSE requirements.
  2. Robust evidence was compiled to support the HFMA financial sustainability self-assessment checklist.
  3. A thorough review and identification of weaknesses in our financial governance processes, paved the way for necessary rectifications.
  4. Successful delegation of budgets to budget managers, ensuring streamlined financial management.

The outcomes

  1. Time saved in communication efforts, as tasks on the planner board feature due dates and automated email reminders are sent to task owners.
  2. Improved project management efficiency, facilitated by weekly senior team meetings to monitor progress and the effective utilisation of the planner board.
  3. Enhanced functionality provided by the planner board, including options to view data by buckets, lists, and charts, as well as filters for outstanding tasks, assignments, and overdue tasks. While similar functionalities exist in Excel, utilising the planner board reduces the margin for error compared to Excel-based systems.
  4. Confidence in the thorough training rollout to all budget managers before the delegation of budgets, addressing a critical need following the disruptions caused by the pandemic.

The Innovation

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What the peer-reviewers said

“Using tools that are accessible and bringing along colleagues is good leadership and improved organisation governance controls.”

“The Team Planner Board innovation effectively addresses the specific challenges faced by the Finance team, delivering better value through enhanced efficiency, communication, and project management.”

“ I think this tool will be useful for other areas and not just audit going forward.”

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