August 8, 2018

The Condition Improvement Fund (CIF) is an annual bidding round for schools, academies and colleges that need to apply for capital funding to improve their facilities. It is anticipated that the bidding criteria for 2019/2020 will be announced in October with a closing date at the end of December. It has always been a tough battle to be successful with a bid and in a sense, the bar is raised each year so if you are the Head of a single academy trust, smaller multi-academy trust (MAT) or sixth-form college, you’ll want to start thinking about your bid. Key areas of consideration should be how to maximise your chances of approval, and how to guarantee a return on investment (ROI).

When it comes to the CIF bidding round, of course you want to be accepted, but you also want to make sure you’ve submitted a proposal that enhances your learning environment and attracts talented students and staff. The key here is to spend time putting together your submission with the help of experts to maximise your chance of a return.

How to get your CIF bid accepted

The outcome of the 2017-2018 Condition Improvement Fund, stated that the highest CIF priorities were compliance, health and safety and projects that address the most significant building condition. The three categories deemed suitable for a CIF bid are:

  • Condition
  • Condition with expansion
  • Expansion

This might mean you turn your attention to improving or extending your sports facilities or dining areas to eliminate overcrowding and maximise student health, as well as addressing neglected area of your building such as roofs, windows or heating.

CIF bids and the Healthy Pupils Capital Fund – have to omit for now as it is not known whether this will be included in the 2019-20 bidding round

Understanding your CIF bid ROI

There is a constant drive within Government for achieving maximum return on investment. What’s more, you’ll want to fully utilise your budget by getting design, manufacturing and installation right for the requirements of your school or college. That means sourcing building materials and designs that are both cost-effective and built to last, with swift lead and installation times.

CIF bid ROI: can architects help?

One solution is to engage the services of an Architect or specialist Design & Build company to help you develop your proposals for a new dining or sports hall; they will be able to help you prepare your submission for success and maximise your project’s ROI.

At Streetspace Urban Structures, our canopy products present a cost-effective and durable method for improving dining and sports facilities, so pupils can still exercise and get a hot, healthy meal, whatever the weather. We provide a full design and planning service to save you valuable time and increase your CIF bid ROI. For more information on how we can help you maximise your CIF bid, contact us today.