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14 Mar The decision to merge is the easy bit – transformation is the hard miles.

Consolidation of further education institutions is now underway – waves of sub-regional analysis and review taking place to inform recommendations about their future.

Governing bodies will be jockeying for position, seeking to make the best decision for their own organisation as well as heed the recommendations. However, that’s the relatively easy bit.

The hard miles are in the transformation of the current state to the future state of things.  Governing bodies and executive leadership teams should not underestimate the vision, planning and leadership required to make transformation a success.

One area often overlooked is the need to lead and drive delivery of transformation where there are fewer people in the future state trying to do more than was required in the current state.  Business as usual work still needs to be done.

Using external expertise and capacity, that is non partisan to the organisations involved, can be an effective way of ensuring a transformation plan is delivered – working TO the governing body, WITH the executive leadership team to SUPPORT the senior management and their teams.

We are likely to see more than a few dozen mergers across Further Education in the coming years – leading transformation will be vital to their success.