By Nazatul Izma
Over the past few years, reduced funding has forced higher education institutions (HEIs) to think out of the box in order to manage their costs and diversify their income streams.
MIA’s annual Higher Education Strategic Financial Management Conference 2019, which is a highly popular franchise among academics and finance professionals working in education, will focus on the technologies and innovations that can help HEIs to become more technologically adept, commercially relevant, and financially resilient.
What can you expect from the Conference?
- Policy Insights – A senior representative from the Higher Education Department at the Ministry of Education will be speaking on the policies and reforms being implemented by the government to improve the quality of talent and produce graduates that are fit-for-purpose in the evolving digital economy.
- Panel Discussions – To help HEIs run strategically like Business Enterprises, the Conference will feature several panels comprising CFOs and leaders from industry and private and public universities, share their best practices and insights.
These panels will focus on:
- The adoption and roll-out of data analytics and technology to enhance HEI finance functions and support informed decisions on capital allocation
- The key skills in finance and reporting that HEIs must acquire to enable strategic financial management and strategic decision-making
- How HEIs can embrace entrepreneurship and technologies and link up with the private sector and industry to become more commercial and relevant in a highly competitive and globalised education market
- How HEI finance functions can help to secure, manage and optimise scarce development and research funds to enhance the HEI’s reputation and academic rankings.
- New Developments in Waqf and Corporate Reporting – MIA constantly looks out for tools and platforms that could help HEIs enhance their stakeholder communications and diversify income and funding streams.
- A promising new development relates to utilising blockchain’s transparency and accountability to enhance waqf’s appeal. HEIs might want to consider rolling out transparent and fraud-proof waqf-blockchain hybrids to tap into donations from the public, alumni and other donors.
- Meanwhile, MIA as the national advocate for integrated reporting (IR) is strongly encouraging HEIs to adopt IR to tell stakeholders how they are creating value and developing the country’s talent pool. By communicating their purpose, objectives and achievements through the vehicle of IR, HEIs could gain new sources of funding and support, perhaps in the form of research grants and industry support for commercial research applications. A good IR also strengthens brand and reputation and pulls in students, donors and public support.
- Technical Updates – No higher education conference organised by MIA is complete without technical sessions to upgrade HEIs’ finance and accounting professionals.
- This year’s Conference focuses on best practices and updates on Financial Reporting Standards affecting HEIs along with comparisons of MPSAS, MFRS and MPERS in financial reporting.
- Another key session relates to compliance with withholding tax regulations and the impact of withholding tax on the higher education sector.
The Higher Education Strategic Financial Management Conference 2019 will be held from 27-28 August 2019 at the Connexion Conference & Event Centre @ Nexus, Bangsar South, Kuala Lumpur For more information, visit pd.mia.org.my or contact Vino at [email protected]