FINANCIAL SERVICES NEWSLETTER
May 2016 Edition
MESSAGE FROM YOUR SUPERINTENDENT
What is your Brave moment? By definition, brave is having or showing courage. To endure or face (unpleasant conditions or behavior) without showing fear. That is not to say that conditions are unpleasant in Financial Services. Quite the opposite in fact! Financial Services recognizes April as the start of the busiest and most demanding periods, but very exciting times as well! Over the next 3 months we will complete the reporting requirements of the Ministry for 7-month reporting, generate and present a Balanced Budget submission to the board for 2016-2017, ensure schools and all board departments adhere to year-end cut-off dates, co-ordinate supply chain requirements for the 2016-2017 school year, test and upgrade a new IPPS.net software program and begin to implement the On-Line Payment System for schools. As demanding as these tasks are, I know that working together we can surpass all challenges. Show your Brave!
The Ministry announced the GSN (Grants for Student Needs) funding last month and the message remains clear - efficient use of school space, reduce excess capacity and continued fiscal restraint. At the provincial level and at most boards, it appears that GSN funding has increased year-over-year, however this increase is related to the funding of central labour agreements. A summary of the GSN Announcement is attached to this newsletter.
April also begins the first full month of Spring and we hope that means warmer weather. Get outside and enjoy those wonderful first signs of Spring!
Superintendent of Financial Services
SPRING CLEANING TIPS
Spring has us wanting to dust our desks and clean up our computers. Start the season with a fresh workspace with this spring cleaning checklist.
1. Your Computer Desktop-Delete unnecessary files
2. Your Supply Drawer-sort paperclips, pens, staples and other supplies in neat easy to grab areas. Throw out any writing utensils that don’t work.
3. Your filing cabinet- Create a clean, organized filing system.
4. Your phone– Take a sanitizing wipe and clean off the buttons and receiver.
5. Your inbox-Use your archives. When you get emails determine where they go.
6. Your keyboard– Another often overlooked area. Remove loose debris, then sanitize. Try compressed air to get between keys.
7. Your papers—Everything should have a home. Shred or file away.
8. Your décor-Refresh with current photos, inspirational quotes and anything else to help keep you on track and make your space yours .
WORKPLACE THOUGHTS AND IDEAS
Are Meetings Costing Too Much? When the Harvard Business Review say the findings of a report by management consultants, calculating the cost of one company’s weekly management meetings at a staggering US$15 million, it took action. The publication developed a free Meeting Cost Calculator, available on its website and as a mobile app, to easily determine the amount spent (and the potential savings) of any particular meeting. First, you select the duration of the meeting and the total number of meeting attendees, then estimate the annual salary of each participant. And voila! It spits out the specific dollar cost of the meeting. The calculator also provides a rating, such as “Gold star! That’s time well spent” or “Stop the madness! Make it cheaper.”
How to Get Ahead - Want to climb the corporate ladder? Get a mentor. 8 in 10 Canadian CFOs polled by Accountemps agree having a mentor is important for career development, with more than half (56%) saying the greatest benefit is learning first hand from someone in a role to which you aspire. Yet only 12% of male and 14% of female professionals surveyed say they have a mentor.
Appreciating Assets - While toys and handbags aren't your typical long-term investments, perhaps they should be. Over the past 15 years, the average value of a pristine-condition Lego set has appreciated 12% annually, while the resale value of designer Hermès Birkin bags rose an average 14.2% .
Late, but Entertaining - Employers continue to hear bizarre excuses for tardiness, including these:
· I thought of quitting today, but then decided not to, so I came late;
· My hair caught on fire from my dryer;
· A black bear took a nap on my car;
· All of my clothes were stolen;
· A Vaseline truck overturned and cars were slipping left and right.