Risk management

The Council has a statutory responsibility to have in place arrangements for managing risks.

The Local Government (Accounts and Audit) Regulations state that “A local government body shall ensure that its financial management is adequate and effective and that it has a sound system of internal control which facilitates the effective exercise of its functions and includes arrangements for the management of risk.”

The Council recognises that there are risks involved in everything it does and it has a duty to manage these risks in a balanced, structured and cost effective way. Our approach to risk management is detailed/ outlined within the Council’s Risk Management Policy and is designed to ensure that:

  • New and emerging risks continue to be identified promptly and assessed realistically;
  • Significant risks are escalated appropriately;
  • The focus is on risks that, because of their likelihood and impact, make them management priorities;
  • Effective mitigating action is taken to manage identified risks;
  • All reasonable steps are taken to reduce risks to the lowest acceptable level.

Risks are regularly reviewed by the allocated risk owner(s) and there is an escalation process for the most significant risks (i.e. those assessed as either net red 9 or amber 8) which ensures that senior management and Members are aware of those risks that pose the most serious threat to the Council and how they are being managed.

Areas where high level risks have been identified are:

Corporate

Risks have been identified around failing to maximise Solihull’s potential/interests as part of the West Midlands Combined Authority, Risks to MTFS delivery due to national budget cuts, Brexit and pressures in Adult's, Children's Services and Covid-19, financial pressures on Children’s services and an information breach requiring notification to the Information Commissioner's Office; mitigating actions have been identified and are regularly reviewed by the Corporate Leadership Team.

The current Covid-19 risk register records 10 high risks relating to the impact of the pandemic and the subsequent response and recovery plan. The risks focus on impact on community, governance, residential homes and homelessness, workforce and workplace.

Economy and Infrastructure and Directorate

Risks have been identified in connection with the Housing Strategy‘s provision of a multi-agency approach to meet the various needs of rough sleepers, potential reduction of income for land charge searches, Core theatre and car parks being unable to maintain current income and meet income targets; mitigating actions have been identified and these are regularly reviewed by the Directorate Leadership team.

Risks have been identified within the UK Central Risk Register and include Kingshurst Village Centre regeneration, NEC longabout and achievement of UKC hub objectives; mitigating actions have been identified and these are regularly reviewed by the UK Central Team.

Children’s services and skills directorate

Risks have been identified around the failure to meet statutory requirements within Children & Families Act relating to SEND and failure to recognise children, young people and young adults at risk of exploitation up to the age of 25 (particularly the emerging criminal exploitation) and co-ordinating a timely response; mitigating actions have been identified and these are regularly reviewed by the Directorate Leadership team.

Public health directorate

Risks have been identified around the impact of Covid-19, Air Quality and service disruption and impact on Leisure contract due to social distancing; mitigating actions have been identified and these are regularly reviewed by the Directorate Leadership team.

Resources directorate

A risk have been identified surrounding the need for the Oracle programme to ensure clarity and distinction between 'Procurement' 'Purchase to Pay process' and 'Finance' responsibilities, mitigating actions have been identified and resolution is being monitored.

Our risk register

The Council's risk report describes these risks in more detail and the steps that we are taking to mitigate them.