Covid-19 - Staff Update - Financial sustainability

Covid-19 - Staff Update - Financial sustainability

Staff update - July 02 2020

Dear colleagues,

We were delighted that so many of you were able to join today’s open session on Financial Sustainability.

For those of you unable to join us, we wanted to provide an update on the approach to the management of the University’s finances for the forthcoming financial year in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.

On Tuesday, the University Court reviewed the potential income loss, largely from International fees, across a range of scenarios and importantly how this income loss will impact upon our cash balances.

In our likely scenario, we predict that our income will fall by £43 million in 2020/21. Despite the University having already taken several measures to reduce expenditure this level of income loss will place a considerable strain on our operational cash.

The financial position will be much clearer following September student registrations and we will also have a better understanding of how the January 2021 intake will support our financial sustainability.  Student Recruitment teams are engaged in a wide range of virtual events and other initiatives to ensure positive communications with prospective students.

The Policy and Resources Committee and Court will revisit the financial position at key points in the year, including in November - when the financial impact of student recruitment in September will be known - and again in March.

On each occasion, Court will decide whether any further savings measures are required, over and above the savings measures already proposed for next year.

Court further approved a pause on major capital expenditure, with the exception of the Science Teaching Hub, where construction has recommenced, and essential works on the Heating System at Hillhead, funded from a low cost SFC loan.  Court was also clear that the £50 Million borrowed last year to fund the Business School and King’s Quarter development may only be used for capital expenditure to stimulate and support future growth.

At today’s Open Session, we explored projections for income generation and provided further detail regarding the Court approved strategy to manage this impact. We also answered questions from the University community.  This session can be viewed here and the presentation slides can be accessed here.

These are undoubtedly challenging times for the University but we take optimism from the fact that activity is beginning to start again on campus. We must also be realistic that our student recruitment in 2020/21 remains unpredictable.

We would like to thank you all once again for your hard work and dedication during this time and we remain mindful that you are making financial sacrifices at the same time as adapting to new ways of working.

We will continue to overcome these challenges by working together and we are grateful for your support.

Best wishes,

George and David

Professor George Boyne

Principal and Vice-Chancellor

David Beattie

Director of Finance