Risk management

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

The Local Government (Accounts and Audit) Regulations state that “A local authority is responsible for ensuring that the financial management of the authority is adequate and effective and that the authority has a sound system of internal control which facilitates the effective exercise of the authority’s 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 securing funding to deliver the UK Central Programme, budget pressures on Children’s services, MTFS delivery due to pressures in Children’s Services, Social care reforms and inflationary pressures, avoidable death, serious harm or abuse of a child where the Council has a duty of care, inefficient systems and processes to share warning and information markers and the possibility of 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.

Economy and Infrastructure and Directorate

Risks have been identified in connection with the Homes for Ukraine scheme, the Kingshurst Village Centre Regeneration scheme and car park income shortfall; 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 financial and delivery risks to the achievement of UKC objectives; mitigating actions have been identified and these are regularly reviewed by the UK Central Team.

Children’s services directorate

Risks have been identified around the failure to meet statutory requirements within Children & Families Act relating to SEND, and pressures on the SEND transport budget; mitigating actions have been identified and these are regularly reviewed by the Directorate Leadership team.

Public health directorate and Adult Care and support directorates

A high risk has been identified around the financial impact of the leisure centre contract; mitigating actions have been identified and these are regularly reviewed by the Directorate Leadership teams.

Our risk register

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