Colin Hawkins BA FCA – Interim Finance Director – GDST   

“What you did at GDST has had everlasting benefit”

GDST, A £180m turnover multi –site group of secondary schools.

Set up the Financial Planning and Analysis function and improved budget and management reporting to the Board. Developed from the basic management reports produced by the accounting software a suite of reports which were clear and brilliantly showed the key results and trends. Exceptionally quick to grasp the key issues of the business which enabled the Directors and Team to take action to remedy a deteriorating position. The analysis work was incisive.

The group significantly benefited; moving from a net overdraft position to over £25m cash in hand within a two year period as a result of management action to address adverse variances which had been identified.

Set up a new business case process for capital expenditure which provided a fairer basis on which to allocate scarce resources. In addition, helped introduce and roll out in this multi-site business a new staff budgeting package which successfully devolved responsibility for budgeting to the key fee earners.

A valued member of the team at a critical time in the history of GDST, when it moved from being a sleeping giant to a profitable and dynamic business. This was probably the greatest change in its culture it has ever experienced, yet achieved quietly, with total commitment and contribution from the whole group. A pleasure to work with and I would have her on my side again if ever the opportunity should arise.

Michael Bailey – VP FP&A International at Iron Mountain

All the attributes that I really look for in analysts – forthright, candid, bright and really challenging. Along with that I felt that I could trust you implicitly and were great fun to work with. Keep in touch and let me know when you are available. Thanks for everything.

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