The Budget Holder’s Survival Guide

The NHS Budget Holder's Survival Guide
The essential first course:

This one day workshop is the essential practical introduction to the skills and knowledge managers and clinicians need to benefit their patients by successful use of their budgets.

It covers all aspects of budgets and budgetary control in the NHS. It is designed for budget holders at all levels and for those who deputise for, or are likely to become budget holders in the future. No prior knowledge is assumed. Engaging practical exercises are backed-up by simple theory to ensure comprehensive coverage of all the basics. No unnecessary jargon is used.


At the end of this course, participants will be able to:

  • List their financial responsibilities
  • Get the best out of their finance department
  • Use a simple step-by-step method to interpret financial reports
  • Project and forecast future financial problems
  • List reasons for variances from budget
Course content:
  • Budgets and budgetary control
  • Understanding financial reports
  • The three methods of accounting
  • Forecasting your financial position
  • How budgets are set
  • Planning to develop your service
  • Your responsibilities… and your rights
  • The seven point plan for interpreting your financial information.

Who should attend?

All staff who are responsible, or who will shortly be responsible, for a budget.

Download a Programme

The NHS Budget Holder's Survival Guide - Programme


“Excellent day. Very entertaining and motivating speaker.” – Gill Fletcher, Advanced Clinical Practitioner

“This was an excellent course and highly informative.” – Hannah Edwards, Information Development and Governance Manager

“Very passionate presentation! Really inspiring and galvanising day to leave with lots of motivation to ask questions and challenge. Thank you. A complicated topic made accessible in an engaging, practical way.” – >Dr Felicity Nichols, Clinical Psychologist

“The course was excellent and enjoyable!” – Ramila Patel, Research Manager

“Very enjoyable :)” – Sue Carson, Financial Analyst

“Really enjoyed the course, looking forward to using it in practice.” – James Colbeck, Service Manager

“Really informative day. David has a great presenting style encouraging interaction. He made a dry subject very interesting.” – John Fanning, Team Manager

“Really learnt a lot today. Thank you.” – Tracey Bullard, Primary Care Development Manager

“Thank you – a very useful and entertaining day.” – Jerry Nayler, Head of Media Studio

“Great informative and very helpful day. Boring subject made interesting. Learned more on 1 day than on a three day module re: finance.” – Nicole Hobson, Family Nurse Specialist

“I liked the delivery, I liked the dispelling of the myth around budgeting – I feel I have some ownership of my budget.” – A Jennings, Safeguarding Lead / Manager LAC Service

“Your personality and wit coupled with your vast expertise shone through.” – Hilary Lawler, Admin Manager

“Very enjoyable day. It’s not a topic in which I’m confident or really interested but David held my attention throughout.” – Michelle Mackay, Neighbourhood Team Manager

“I have really enjoyed the day and am sure there are many aspects that I will apply to practice.” – Sue Jones, Service Manager

“Very enjoyable way to learn about a dry subject. Excellent engaging presentation style. Good interactive learning exercises that helped to explain theory in a practical manner.” – Archie Kaul-Mead, Deputy Service Manager, Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust

“Great day, thank you.” – Casia Calka, Programme Co-ordinator, Health Education England

“Pitched brilliantly at the right level of information.” – Roisin Reade, Service Lead for Early Supported Discharge, Anglian Community Enterprise

“I thought this might be boring – it was excellent, thoroughly enjoyable, thought provoking and a great start and introduction to this subject.” – Anna Ellis, Acting Voluntary Services Manager, Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

112 Comments for “The Budget Holder’s Survival Guide”

Michelle Rigozzi


The course was brilliant both in content and form. We learned how to summarize financial reports in 15 minutes, three methods of accounting, how budgets are set and much more. I valued learning how accounting decisions involve ethics most of all.



Thanks Michelle – it was a real pleasure to have you attend as part of such a lively group. I’m delighted that we covered so much in such a short space of time and want to thank you for your kind comments.

Jenny Maine


Brilliant course….perfect presentation. David is so engaging and witty it made learning very enjoyable. Should definitely be a core course for managers and executive to ensure public money is spent in the right way. Thank you!



Many thanks Jenny. I’d love to see The NHS Budget Holder’s Survival Guide rolled out across the country to support managers and clinicians having a better, more productive, relationship with finance. Thanks so much for your kind comments. I’m so glad you enjoyed the day.

Liz Ellis


The course gave me a confidence to talk through a subject I had previously steered away from. Have requested an extended meeting with my man.acc. this week to discuss matters from the course – I am going to be such a pain now talking through my budget.

David Bailey FCCA


That’s great Liz. I hope the meeting went well and you persist in developing a great working relationship with your accountant. Good luck with you Action Plan! Keep me posted?

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