Changes and “modernisation” at CIWM is “bearing fruit” according to CEO Dr Colin Church, as it publishes its annual review and financial statements.
The statement was made in response to a letsrecycle.com story, which references a letter from CIWM president Professor David Wilson to members as part of the AGM papers (these are publicly available here on the CIWM website).
This Presidential letter, which accompanies the annual review and the financial statements, acknowledges that difficult market conditions – including falling membership numbers in recent years, the impact of austerity on local government, reduced expenditure on training and events by companies across the sector – have resulted in the CIWM Group as a whole posting a net operating deficit.
In addition, the challenges of adapting to the changing expectations of a professional body have also continued to test CIWM and have required investment in areas such as IT and data management to “ensure that the institution is legally compliant and adheres to modern good practice”, it says.
The letter goes on to confirm that CIWM continues to have “substantial financial reserves” and outlines the number of measures that have been put in place with an aim of ensuring the CIWM Group returns to profitability.
“This work is already bearing fruit with membership numbers growing this year for the first time in a while.”
“The financial health of CIWM has been top of the agenda for CIWM and its trustees as trading conditions have become more challenging and measures have been taken to reduce costs and increase revenue,” explains CIWM chief executive Dr Colin Church.
“These include a refocus on CIWM’s core strength – its membership. CIWM now has a much better understanding of members’ needs and for the last 18 months has been working to improve the membership offer and the technical support that CIWM gives to its members.
“In addition, the new membership grade structure, approved at the EGM in June, more effectively supports the career path of modern waste management professionals. This work is already bearing fruit with membership numbers growing this year for the first time in a while.
“Changes to the governance structure of CIWM to ensure it is fit for the future have also been underway since 2016 and CIWM members will be asked to approve a number of constitutional changes at the AGM at the RWM show in Birmingham this week. These are designed to make the Institution more responsive and representative and ensure that the body of Trustees has the right balance of expertise and skills for the future.
“And in line with standard corporate practice, external expert advice has been sought to help CIWM develop a business plan to return it to profitability, including the short term hire of an external consultant. Andrew Garcia is working with CIWM Trustees and the senior management team to provide expert advice on the change process and develop a plan that will be presented to Trustees in October.
“As Professor David Wilson said in his letter to CIWM members, we remain confident in the underlying strength of CIWM and its brands; and the Group consolidated balance sheet is strong with substantial accumulated financial reserves which provide the strength and depth to enable it to meet and overcome challenging economic circumstances. But there is work to be done.”