bw-home-icon[1] Cultural Facilities Corporation home u Annual Report 2014-15

 

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A.   B. Organisational Overview and Performance

B.1 Organisational Overview   8

B.2 Performance Analysis  22

B.3 Scrutiny       65

B.4 Risk Management 65

B.5 Internal Audit   65

B.6 Fraud Prevention  66

B.7 Work Health and Safety  66

B.8 Human Resources Management 68

B.9 Ecologically Sustainable Development 72

 

B.1 Organisational Overview

B.1.1 Vision, mission and values

The CFC’s 2011-16 Strategic Plan provides the overarching framework for the organisation’s planning activities, including for the development of its annual corporate plans. 

 

The Strategic Plan identifies mission or purpose statements for the organisation as a whole, as well as for its two program delivery divisions : the Canberra Theatre Centre and ACT Museums and Galleries (which in turn comprises two sections : CMAG and the Historic Places).   

 

The mission or purpose statements identified in the Strategic Plan are supported by statements as to what the CFC is seeking to achieve in a number of “areas of focus”, as set out below.

 

Mission/Purpose for the CFC

To enable our distinctive institutions to provide enriching cultural experiences that contribute to Canberra’s identity

                                                           

Area of focus

What we want to achieve

Strategy and planning

 

A clear direction for our future

Governance

 

An accountable, resilient and dynamic organisation

Human resources 

An employer of choice for staff and volunteers

Financial management  

 

Long-term financial sustainability

Infrastructure and systems

Support for the delivery of high quality cultural experiences

Communication 

 

Engagement of our stakeholders

Growing and leveraging off our assets 

Growth in targeted areas where we can add value

 

Mission/Purpose for the Canberra Theatre Centre

To be Canberra’s leading performing arts centre

 

Area of focus

What we want to achieve

Programming

A diverse program that creates a leadership position for the Centre and an identity for Canberra

Marketing and audience development

A loyal and growing audience

Community initiatives

Connect the whole community with the performing arts

Growing and leveraging off our assets

A performing arts centre for the future

 

Mission/Purpose for ACT Museums and Galleries

To engage our community by presenting Canberra’s stories, diverse visual culture and heritage

 

Area of focus

What we want to achieve

Programming, story-telling, interpretation  

Programming that reflects Canberra’s unique identity

Marketing and audience development

 

A loyal and growing audience

Stewardship of assets

Places and collections that allow us to tell the many stories of Canberra

Growing and leveraging off our assets         

Growth in targeted areas where we can add value

 

Values

 

The CFC has identified a set of values to support its mission and underpin its activities.  These values are as follows.

 

·         We regard cultural activity as essential for a vibrant, diverse and healthy community, and vital for social and economic development.

·         We recognise that cultural activity makes a valuable contribution to the promotion of the ACT as an attractive destination for business investment and tourism.

·         We seek to engage the community in a greater understanding of the value of the arts and our cultural heritage.

·         We are committed to ensuring that the cultural and heritage places and collections, which we hold in trust for the broader community, are researched and interpreted, and that they are both made accessible now and are conserved for future generations.

·         We acknowledge and respect the cultural diversity of the region and the richness this brings to the ACT’s arts and heritage.

·         We acknowledge that our staff and volunteers are highly valued assets of the CFC and continue to recognise their contribution and further develop their skills.

·         We place major importance on maintaining professional standards in the management of our facilities and on delivering excellent programs.

·         We are committed to providing a full and balanced program of visual arts, performing arts, and social history that is diverse, accessible, and of a high standard.

·         We value cooperative and strategic partnerships across all areas of the CFC’s activities.

·         We are committed to developing and supporting local arts and heritage practitioners and initiatives, recognising this important source of expertise and creativity.

·         We actively seek to engage our communities in our programs and activities.

·         We recognise the financial support of the ACT community, through ACT Government funding, and the need to maximise the cultural return on this important investment.

B.1.2    Role, functions and services

The CFC was established under the Cultural Facilities Corporation Act 1997 (the CFC Act), which came into operation as from 1 November 1997.

 

The functions of the CFC, as set out in the CFC Act (Section 6) are :

 

·         to manage, develop, present, coordinate and promote cultural activities at designated locations and other places in the ACT;

·         to establish and research collections;

·         to conserve and exhibit collections in the possession or under the control of the CFC;

·         to undertake activities, in cooperation with other people if appropriate, to exercise its other functions; and

·         to exercise other functions given to the CFC under this Act or another Territory Law.

 

The CFC Act (Section 7) requires that the CFC, in exercising its functions, must consider :

 

·         any cultural policies or priorities of the Executive known to the CFC; and

·         other cultural activities in the ACT.

 

The CFC is responsible for :

 

·         the Canberra Theatre Centre;

·         CMAG;

·         the Nolan Collection Gallery @ CMAG; and

·         three Historic Places : Lanyon, Calthorpes’ House and Mugga-Mugga.

 

The CFC’s functions therefore include the performing arts, the visual arts, social history and cultural heritage management.  The organisation delivers a range of cultural services to the community by providing activities such as theatre presentations, exhibitions, and education and community programs, and through conserving and presenting significant aspects of the ACT’s cultural heritage.

 

Additional information about the CFC can be found at the following websites :

 

·         www.canberratheatrecentre.com.au covering the Canberra Theatre Centre; and

·         www.museumsandgalleries.act.gov.au covering CMAG, the Nolan Collection Gallery @ CMAG and the Historic Places.

 

Clients and stakeholders

 

The CFC reports to the Minister for the Arts.  Following a change to Administrative Arrangements in July 2014, the Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate (CMTEDD) became the “parent” directorate for the CFC.

 

The CFC’s other clients and stakeholders include :

 

·         the community of the ACT and region;

·         visitors to the ACT;

·         the arts, cultural, heritage, education, business and tourism sectors, including other cultural organisations;

·         national producers of performing arts, including commercial and funded companies;

·         the diplomatic community; and

·         the media, especially the Canberra media.


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B.1.3    Organisational structure, environment and planning framework

Organisational structure

 

The CFC is organised into two program delivery divisions: the Canberra Theatre Centre and ACT Museums and Galleries, together with a central finance/corporate section.   The CFC’s high level organisational chart as of 30 June 2015 is provided below.

Figure B.1.3a CFC Organisational Chart

CFC organisation chart


Organisational environment

 

During 2014-15, the CFC had close working relationships with a number of ACT Government agencies including artsACT, ACT Heritage, Libraries ACT, Economic Development, the Environment and Planning Directorate and the Education and Training Directorate.

 

Planning Framework

 

As noted in Section B.1.1, the CFC has adopted a five-year Strategic Plan that provides the overarching framework for the organisation’s planning activities, including for the development of its annual corporate plans. 

 

The Strategic Plan includes statements as to what the CFC is seeking to achieve in a number of “areas of focus”.  It also identifies strategies to guide the organisation in working towards each “area of focus”.

 

The CFC’s 2014-15 Corporate Plan, based on its 2011-16 Strategic Plan, identified the actions the CFC intended to take during the year to implement these strategies.  Results relating to these actions are reported in summary in this section and in detail in Section B.2.

 

The CFC’s accountability indicators and targets for 2014-15 were identified in the CFC’s 2014-15 Statement of Intent, which was tabled as one of the 2014-15 ACT Budget papers.  The Statement of Intent also identified the CFC’s strategic objectives and indicators.  Results relating to the CFC’s accountability and strategic indicators are reported in summary in this section and in detail in the 2014-15 Statement of Performance at Attachment 1.

B.1.4    Summary of performance in achieving objectives and targets

B.1.4.1 Performance outcomes – Accountability Indicators

2014-15 was an active and successful year for the CFC, in which the organisation achieved good results against the majority of its accountability indicators.  For example, during the year the CFC :

 

·         achieved 366,546 estimated visitors and patrons to its facilities and programs, a figure 10% above target and mainly relating to higher than expected visitors to the Canberra Theatre Centre and the Historic Places; 

·         provided 706 education and community programs, a figure 26% above target and relating especially to the provision of additional programs at CMAG; and

·         recorded customer satisfaction levels of 95.6%, a figure 20% above target and reflecting attempts at all venues to achieve as high a standard as possible.

 

The CFC did not achieve its 2014-15 target for numbers of days of venue usage at the Canberra Theatre Centre, with a result slightly below target (a result of 582 or 1% below the target of 590).  This outcome reflected changing patterns of usage of the venue; for example, the programming of more children’s shows, which usually have several performances a day, contributing to the higher theatre patron numbers than expected but resulting in fewer actual days of usage.

 

Detailed performance results and variance explanations are included in the 2014-15 Statement of Performance at Attachment 1.

 

B.1.4.2 Performance outcomes – Financial Management

 

The CFC achieved good business outcomes in 2014-15, as is reflected in its trading results for the year and its performance against its financial accountability indicators. 

 

The CFC’s overall financial result for 2014-15 was an operating deficit of $2.128m, which was 4% worse than the budgeted deficit of $2.041m.  This result was, however, largely influenced by higher than budgeted depreciation costs (a non-cash item).  For 2014-15 the CFC achieved better than budget trading results, as reflected in its revenues being 23% higher than budget.  It should be noted that, due to its large assets holdings and consequent significant depreciation expenses, the CFC always expects to have an operating deficit, since it is not funded for depreciation but receives capital injections through the capital works program.  The operating deficit for 2014-15 was lower than depreciation expenses for the year, meaning that the CFC achieved a cash surplus.

 

The better than budget trading result for the year can mainly be attributed to higher than budget revenues from Venue Hire, Ticket Sales and Associated Revenue as a result of larger volumes of activity at the Canberra Theatre Centre.  The good trading results in 2014-15 allowed the CFC to make an addition of $300,000 to the Theatre Reserve at year end.  This reserve was established by the CFC at the end of the 2011-12 financial year, to assist it in managing fluctuations in the performing arts industry and to offset the financial risk associated with major theatre programming ventures for the Canberra Theatre Centre.

 

The CFC achieved an own-sourced revenue figure of 51.4% as a proportion of total revenue for 2014-15, against a target of 40.8%.  The better than target result relates mainly to larger volumes of activity at the Canberra Theatre Centre.  The CFC achieved a Cost to Government per estimated visitor/patron of $22.49 against a target of $24.83, the better than target result reflecting the above-target number of estimated visitors and patrons.

 

The CFC also completed all its 2014-15 capital works and capital upgrade projects by

year-end, and acquitted 100% of its capital works funding for the year. 

 

A full analysis of the CFC’s financial results and financial position is set out in the Management Discussion and Analysis at Attachment 1.


B.1.4.3 Performance outcomes – Strategic Objectives/Indicators

 

Strategic Objective 1 – The Canberra Theatre Centre is Canberra’s leading performing arts centre

 

Strategic Indicator 1 : Quality and extent of the Canberra Theatre Centre’s programs, activities and facilities

 

During 2014-15, major outcomes in relation to this Strategic Objective and Strategic Indicator were as follows.

 

·         The Canberra Theatre Centre provided high quality programming through its 2014 and 2015 Subscription Seasons, in order to bring leading performing arts companies to Canberra and develop a strong artistic footprint for the Centre.  Productions at the Centre in 2014-15 included those by : Sydney Theatre Company; Sydney Dance Company;  Bangarra Dance Theatre; CIRCA; and Bell Shakespeare.  A particular feature of the Centre’s 2015 Subscription Season was the celebration of the Centre’s 50th birthday, including the production of Giselle performed by the Australian Ballet with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra playing as pit orchestra.  The Centre also nurtured local artists such as Free Rain Theatre Company, James Batchelor and Fast + Fresh.

·         During 2014-15, the Centre sought to develop a loyal and growing audience by using all forms of e-marketing, including social media, together with print and television marketing, to promote its programs, activities and facilities.  State of the art ticketing software was used in the Box Office, enabling online ticket sales, increased security and the ability to undertake research into data.  The Centre also presented many value-adding activities through the year to enhance the overall patron experience.  These included pre-show forums, post-show question and answer sessions, “meet the artist” opportunities, pre-performance arts and craft activities for children, and panel discussions at Parliament House for various productions. 

·         The Centre sought to extend its reach to the community including those with special needs in 2014-15 though its award-winning access initiatives, such as captioning services, audio loops, audio description, tactile tours, Companion Cards, and designated spaces for wheelchair access.  The Centre maintained strong connections with the education sector by providing a number of education opportunities for local students, including its Vocational Education and Training program, which leads to formal qualifications at the Certificate III level to graduating students.

·         Throughout the year, the CFC continued its program of upgrading the Centre to ensure it is fit for purpose both now and in the future.  2014-15 saw the final year of a three year Stage 1 major capital program and the first year of a further, Stage 2 capital program.  Major items funded through these programs included a new LED video screen facing Civic Square; the replacement of a boiler; and upgrades to heating and air conditioning systems, theatre lighting equipment, and fire monitoring panels.  The Centre also undertook a program of smaller capital upgrades and improvements to support its commercial activities, including improved signage and a website upgrade.

 

Further details regarding outcomes against Strategic Objective 1 and Strategic Indicator 1 are provided under Section B.2.

 

Strategic Objective 2 – ACT Museums and Galleries engage our community by presenting Canberra’s stories, diverse visual culture and heritage

 

Strategic Indicator 2 : Quality and extent of ACT Museums and Galleries programs and activities

 

During 2014-15, major outcomes in relation to this Strategic Objective and Strategic Indicator were as follows.

 

·         ACT Museums and Galleries provided a wide range of :

-        exhibitions, including : Watershed: Lake Burley Griffin 1964-2014 celebrating the 50th anniversary of the inauguration of Lake Burley Griffin; PULSE: Reflections on the body reflecting on the body and its functions as physical as well as spiritual phenomena; World of Cricket from the Bradman Museum to coincide with the 2015 Cricket World Cup; Urban Suburban; and X-Rated: the sex industry in the ACT;

-        education and community programs, such as the popular CMAG on Sunday family program; education and school holiday programs at the three ACT Historic Places; and workshops focusing on the Nolan Collection; and

-        special events and activities, including The Lanyon Christmas Carols and Picnic; The Open Gardens Australia Plant Fair; The Great Lanyon Easter Egg Hunt; The 2015 Sylvia Curley Oration; and A Toast to the Lake event associated with the 50th Anniversary of Lake Burley Griffin.

·         During 2014-15, ACT Museums and Galleries sought to develop a loyal and growing audience through : gaining extensive media coverage, with features appearing on TV and radio and in the print media; maintaining and developing a high quality website and using digital media for promotion and publicity; and through programs targeting specific audience sectors, including cultural heritage management programs at the ACT Historic Places for the tertiary education sector.  CMAG undertook a range of exhibitions and events in partnership with the ACT community including the annual Capital Arts Patrons Organisation exhibition and auction, and the exhibition A potted history of Canberra region ceramics which opened ahead of the Canberra-run 2015 Australian Ceramic Triennial.

·         ACT Museums and Galleries continued to care for and develop the places and collections under its stewardship during the year, through activities such as : a program of acquisitions to the Collection of CMAG, including a number of major donations; and the continuation of an audio guide project to enhance visitor experience, improve security and increase the capacity to manage larger groups at the three ACT Historic Places sites.

·         Asset management and enhancement was a focus for ACT Museums and Galleries during 2014-15, with the completion of a two-year program, funded through the 2013-14 ACT Budget, of upgrading roads within the Lanyon historic precinct, in order to facilitate access to, and within, the precinct for visitors and site residents.  A capital upgrade program was implemented at all sites to introduce a range of improvements and refurbishments to ensure the upkeep of ACT Museums and Galleries assets.  Major items completed in 2014-15 included refurbishments to the Lanyon Heritage Centre, and upgrades of CMAG exhibition and collection furniture.

 

Further details regarding outcomes against Strategic Objective 2 and Strategic Indicator 2 are provided under Section B.2.

 

B.1.4.4 Performance outcomes – other key results

 

In addition to performance outcomes under the Strategic Objective and Indicators identified above, other major performance outcomes for the CFC in 2014-15 included the following.

 

City planning

 

Throughout the year, the CFC was closely involved in work on City planning and the planning of future cultural facilities in Civic.  This role included working with other ACT Government agencies on the next stage of studies into a major new theatre for Canberra, which will lead to a concept design and costing of the new facility in 2015-16.  The CFC’s role in planning initiatives during 2014-15 also included its active participation in consultations on the City and Northbourne Avenue Urban Design Framework.

 

Arts leadership 

 

In keeping with its commitment to providing cultural leadership in the ACT and region, in 2014-15 the CFC worked with independent arts advocacy body The Childers Group in implementing initiatives to support the ACT arts community, including by jointly presenting an Arts Leadership Forum attended by over 100 participants.  The two organisations also worked together in hosting a book launch and workshop on governance for arts bodies.

 

A further aspect of the CFC’s role in the arts community was its major submission into the review of the ACT Arts Policy Framework, and its participation in consultations on the development of the 2015 ACT Arts Policy.

 

Fundraising

 

In 2014-15, the CFC again placed a particular emphasis on fundraising and philanthropy.  Under the leadership of the Board, the CFC identified and implemented a range of fundraising projects for the year through a 2014-15 Fundraising Strategy, using the services of a consultant with expertise in fundraising to assist in implementing the strategy.  During the year, the CFC’s new fundraising initiative, the Canberra Region Treasures Fund, was launched by artist John Olsen as a means of supporting major acquisitions by CMAG.  The first such acquisition, Elioth Gruner’s The dry road 1930, was purchased during the year with support from the new fund.  A full list of major funding, sponsorship and support is at Appendix 7.

 

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B.1.5.1 Current and future priorities

 

Priorities for the CFC in 2015-16 and into the forward years include the following.

 

·         Work with other agencies on initiatives to plan future directions of the city centre and the future provision of cultural facilities in Civic, including new theatre facilities, within the framework of the City Plan and City to the Lake project.

·         Work with other agencies in exploring the opportunity for managing one of the Sydney Ancher buildings on Northbourne Avenue as a house museum, together with complementary usages. 

·         Work with Civic Square neighbours, including Craft ACT, the ACT Legislative Assembly, the Theo Notaras Multicultural Centre, Elections ACT and the Civic Library, on accommodation strategies and cooperative activities for the Civic Square precinct, especially with the relocation of certain Assembly functions to the North Building.

·         Liaise with other agencies on the introduction of evening pay parking in Civic, in order to support theatre patrons in transitioning to the new arrangements and minimise any impact on theatre operations.

·         Undertake further collaborative projects between the CFC and The Childers Group.

·         Participate in the implementation of the 2015 ACT Arts Policy and studies into the economic, social and community impact of the arts in the ACT.

·         Present a major exhibition of Chinese contemporary art at CMAG, INK REMIX : contemporary art from mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong, and tour this exhibition to Sydney, Brisbane and Bendigo.

·         Present major theatre shows, such as The Illusionists, and seek to further build the Theatre Reserve to provide financial support for theatre programming.

·         Finalise and launch a new audio guide and interpretation project across the ACT Historic Places.

·         Undertake an extensive program of capital works across the organisation, including : the final year of a Stage 2 upgrade program and the first year of at Stage 3 upgrade program for the Canberra Theatre Centre; a project to upgrade the storm water systems at the Lanyon Heritage Centre; and priority capital upgrades at all CFC sites.

·         Undertake further studies into a redesign of the CMAG foyer, building on an initial design concepts study undertaken during 2014-15, in order to increase its functionality and attractiveness, and to improve its address to Civic Square.

·         Develop a new five-year Strategic Plan and Communications Strategy to replace the CFC’s current 2011-16 Strategic Plan and Communications Strategy.

·         Ensure a continued focus on fundraising, including by implementing priority fundraising projects for 2015-16 and further promoting the Canberra Region Treasures Fund.

·         Finalise and implement a review of the top management structure of the ACT Museums and Galleries division of the CFC.

·         Finalise a comprehensive Safety Management System for the organisation, providing consistent approaches to work health safety (WHS) across the CFC as one of the first ACT agencies to implement this holistic approach to WHS management.

·         Implement sustainability initiatives relating to asset management and operation, including improved recycling programs.

 

Apart from the areas identified above, the main ongoing priority of the CFC is to achieve its vision and mission, by providing cultural leadership through a high standard of service to the community.  In keeping with this priority, the CFC will continue to promote the value of a vibrant cultural life, not only in terms of serving the existing community of the ACT, but also as a contribution to Canberra’s economic development and its attractiveness as both a business and tourist destination into the future. 

 

B.1.5.2 Current and future challenges

 

2014-15 was a busy and successful year for the organisation, with no major problems experienced in either operational or financial terms.  Minor challenges during the year related to factors such as the resourcing pressures, for a small organisation, of servicing the CFC’s contribution to Civic planning initiatives and to new programs, such as the planning and delivery of the Arts Leadership Forum in association with The Childers Group.

 

As in previous years, major capital works projects presented some challenges in terms of the need to ensure operational continuity during the works programs; for example, the major upgrades at the Canberra Theatre Centre needed to be scheduled to avoid impacts on theatre performances.  By year end, however, all capital works projects had been successfully implemented and the CFC had fully expended all its 2014-15 capital works funding.

 

The key challenge facing the CFC in the future, as in previous years, is the ongoing variability and unpredictability of the performing arts business, which impacts directly on the CFC's main non-government income source: its theatre-related revenues.  

 

The variability of this revenue source arises from such factors as : the unpredictability of performing arts product becoming available to tour, which is tied in with the national economic forecast; changing patterns in the confidence felt in the Canberra market by presenters of commercial theatre productions; and variability in the willingness of patrons to expend discretionary income on theatre tickets - for example, Federal Budget cuts and their impact on the ACT economy may result in a downturn in ticket sales. 

 

The CFC seeks to manage the variability in its main non-government income source by seeking new revenue opportunities, such as entering into shared risk partnerships to bring productions to Canberra.  Programming choices also provide a means of addressing the risk of reduced ticket sales in an uncertain economic climate; for example, by including a greater focus on more “family friendly” and commercial product in the programming mix. 

 

At a broader level, the creation of a Theatre Reserve at the end of 2011-12 is a further means by which the CFC is seeking to manage the unpredictability of its income levels.  As noted under Section B.1.4.2, the CFC was able to make an addition of $300,000 to the Theatre Reserve as a result of good trading results in 2014-15.  The increased Reserve will assist the CFC in managing the risks inherent in theatre programming, as well as supporting efforts to bring a wider range of shows into the Canberra market.

 

B.1.6 Internal Accountability

B.1.6.1 Senior Management of the CFC

The senior management team of the CFC comprises the following positions :

 

·         the Chief Executive Officer;

·         the Chief Finance Officer;

·         the Director, ACT Museums and Galleries; and

·         the Director, Canberra Theatre Centre.

 

The names and information about the occupants of these positions are provided at Appendix 1 (for the Chief Executive Officer, as a CFC Board member) and Appendix 2 (for the other three senior management positions).  Information about remuneration for the Chief Executive Officer, as the only senior executive position in the CFC, is provided at Appendix 1.

 

The responsibilities of each senior management position are reflected in the organisational chart.  Further information relating to the structure of the organisation is provided at Section B.1.3.

 

The senior managers meet as a Senior Management committee every fortnight to discuss matters of CFC-wide interest.  Other significant committees of the CFC include the Work Health and Safety Committee (refer to Section B.7) and the Agency Consultative Committee (refer to Section B.8).

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B.1.6.2 Board of the CFC

Composition

 

Section 10 of the CFC Act provides for the CFC Board to have seven members.

 

The Chair, Deputy Chair, and four Members of the CFC Board are appointed by the Minister in accordance with the provisions of the Financial Management Act 1996 (the FM Act), Sections 78-79.  The CFC’s Chief Executive Officer is also a Member of the CFC Board in accordance with Section 80 of the FM Act.

 

The functions of the Chair, Deputy Chair, Chief Executive Officer, and associated provisions relating to Board Members, are set out in the FM Act (Division 9.3).

Details of the CFC’s membership and remuneration during 2014-15 are provided at Appendix 1.  The CFC’s Governance Charter is available at http://www.museumsandgalleries.act.gov.au/home/about.html.

 

Meetings

 

The CFC’s Board meetings are convened and conducted in accordance with the provisions of the FM Act (Division 9.4).

 

A schedule of the CFC’s Board meetings held during 2014-15, and attendances at those meetings, is at Appendix 1.

 

Governance Charter

 

The Board has adopted the following to guide its operations and performance :

 

·         Governance Framework;

·         Board Charter; and

·         Board Code of Conduct

 

These documents were reviewed and updated during 2014-15 and are included in the CFC’s Governance Charter, which is available at http://www.museumsandgalleries.act.gov.au/home/about.html. 

 

Audit Committee of the Board

 

The CFC has established this as a sub-committee of the Board, with a formal charter setting out its role and functions in relation to oversight of financial, audit, and compliance matters, including risk management and internal controls.

 

A copy of the Audit Committee Charter is provided as part of the Governance Charter available at http://www.museumsandgalleries.act.gov.au/home/about.html.  Membership details and a schedule of meetings held during 2014-15 are provided at Section B.5.

B.1.6.3 Advisory Committees

The CFC has established three Advisory Committees, in accordance with Section 8 (i)(a) of the CFC Act, to provide expert strategic advice in relation to their respective specialist areas.

 

The committees include :

Name of Committees

Role of Committees

CMAG Advisory Committee

To provide the CFC Board with expert strategic advice, within the context of the CFC’s Strategic Plan for 2011-16 and its annual Corporate Plans.

 

The committees provide expert advice and assistance, on a voluntary basis.  This support is valuable in contributing to the CFC’s policy development, business planning and community participation activities. 

Historic Places Advisory Committee

Canberra Theatre Centre Advisory Committee

 

The committees have been appointed for a three year term from 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2016.

 

During 2014-15, the advisory committees’ first meeting of the year was held as a plenary workshop, which included a presentation by the CFC’s CEO, together with breakout sessions to allow the committees to meet individually.  Individual advisory committee meetings were held throughout the year and the final meeting of the 2014-15 year for the committees comprised a plenary session where the three committees came together for a 2015-16 corporate planning workshop.

 

During 2014-15, members of the three advisory committees donated approximately 97 hours of time in total, the majority of which was spent attending two plenary workshops and individual committee meetings.

 

Operating Guidelines and Terms of Reference for the advisory committees are provided as part of the Governance Charter available at http://www.museumsandgalleries.act.gov.au/home/about.html. 

 

Advisory Committee Memberships, together with a schedule of advisory committee meetings held during 2014-15, are provided at Appendix 3.

 

Further information about the operation of the advisory committees, including their interaction with the CFC Board, is provided under Section B.2.

 

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B.2 Performance Analysis

 

1.      The CFC’s 2014-15 Statement of Intent was prepared in accordance with Section 61 of the FM Act.  The Statement of Intent provides the CFC’s strategic objectives and indicators. The Statement of Performance found at Attachment 1, provides details of how these strategic objectives and indicators were achieved in 2014-15.  These are summarised under Section B.1.4.

 

Below are the performance measures, targets and results for the CFC’s key performance indicators from 2011-2015.

 

Figure B.2a : Estimated number of visitors/patrons to CFC facilities/programs

Estimated number of visitors/patrons to CFC facilities/programs


The number of visitors/patrons to the CFC has increased steadily over the past four years.  In 2014-15 there were 366,546 visitors/patrons to CFC facilities and programs, a figure 10% above the target of 332,000.

 

 

Figure B.2b : Number of exhibitions at facilities managed by the CFC

Number of exhibitions at facilities managed by the CFC


The number of exhibitions at facilities managed by the CFC has reduced from a peak in 2012-13, which was influenced by the number of additional Centenary-related exhibitions.    The result for 2014-15 met the target of 26 exhibitions.

 

Figure B.2c : Numbers of education and community programs provided by the CFC

Numbers of education and community programs provided by the CFC


ACT Museums and Galleries presented a higher than target number of education and  community programs over the past four years, in response to the high demand for these programs.  In 2014–15, CMAG again responded to a high demand, particularly for school education programs, reaching a total of 706 programs overall.

 

 

Figure B.2d : Number of days venue usage at the Canberra Theatre Centre’s venues


Theatre venue usage rates have reduced over the past three years, despite increasing numbers of theatre patrons.  This is due to changing patterns of usage, including larger volumes of children’s theatre shows, which usually have several performances a day, contributing to increased patron numbers but resulting in fewer actual days of usage. There were 582 days of venue usage in 2014-15, slightly below the target of 590.

 

Figure B.2e : Customer satisfaction with quality of services provided by the CFC, as measured by annual survey

Customer satisfaction with quality of services provided by the CFC, as measured by annual survey

Customer satisfaction levels over the past four years have consistently been above target, reflecting the attempts by facilities to achieve as high a standard as possible.  The level for 2014-15 was 95.6%, above the target of 80%.  Consideration will be given in future years to revising the target upwards.

 

Figure B.2f : Cost to Government per estimated visitor/patron to CFC facilities/programs

Cost to Government per estimated visitor/patron to CFC facilities/programs


The Cost to Government per estimated visitor/patron has reduced over the past four years, reflecting increased visitation trends.  In 2014-15, the figure was $22.49 against a target of $24.83, reflecting a higher estimated number of visitor/patrons to CFC facilities/programs than expected.

 

Figure B.2g : Own Sourced Revenue as a Proportion of Total Revenue for the Corporation

Own Sourced Revenue as a Proportion of Total Revenue for the Corporation


The CFC’s owned sourced revenue has increased over the past four years, primarily as a result of higher theatre income.   In 2014-15, the figure was 51.4% against a target of 40.8%, due to above-target theatre revenues.

 

The following section analyses in detail the CFC’s performance against the strategies and actions set out in the CFC’s 2014-15 Corporate Plan, which in turn is based on the CFC’s 2011-16 Strategic Plan.

 

Under its 2011-16 Strategic Plan and 2014-15 Corporate Plan, the CFC has adopted the following purpose statements –

 

·         Cultural Facilities Corporation
Purpose : To enable our distinctive institutions to provide enriching cultural experiences that contribute to Canberra’s identity

·         Canberra Theatre Centre
Purpose : To be Canberra’s leading performing arts centre

·         ACT Museums and Galleries
Purpose : To engage our community by presenting Canberra’s stories, diverse visual culture and heritage

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Performance against each of these purpose statements is discussed in the next three sections.


 


In each case, the shaded area at the start of the section (What we want to achieve and Strategies to achieve this) sets out the long-term strategies identified in the 2011-16 Strategic Plan.  The next area (Actions for 2014-15) contains the specific actions identified in the 2014-15 Corporate Plan to work towards the long-term strategies during the course of 2014-15.  The final area (Results during the year) reports on the results achieved against the specific actions for 2014-15.

 

B.2.1  CULTURAL FACILITIES CORPORATION

Purpose : To enable our distinctive institutions to provide enriching cultural experiences that contribute to Canberra’s identity

 

STRATEGY AND PLANNING

What we want to achieve :

A clear direction for our future

Strategies to achieve this :

 

·         Engagement of key stakeholders in developing a strategic plan

·         Linkage of strategic plan to annual corporate plans and performance management throughout the organisation

·         Regular reporting on progress against the strategic plan

Actions for 2014-15

Results during the year

·         Develop a Corporate Plan for 2014-15 linked to the 2011-16 Strategic Plan.

·         The 2014-15 Corporate Plan, which was linked to the 2011-16 Strategic Plan, was endorsed by the CFC Board at its 1 July 2014 meeting.

·         Continue to implement the ACT Government Service’s performance management system throughout the organisation and ensure all performance agreements link back to the 2014-15 Corporate Plan.

·         Implementation of the performance management system linked to the Corporate Plan continued throughout the year, to ensure all staff understand how their role relates to the organisation’s corporate goals.

·         The CEO’s “start the year” email for 2015 reminded all staff of the importance of performance management and the need for every member of staff to have a completed Performance Management Plan.

·         With the discontinuation of Quarterly Reports as from 1 July 2014, implement alternative systems to track progress against the 2014-15 Corporate Plan throughout the year.

·         Internal systems have been implemented throughout the year to track progress against the 2014-15 Corporate Plan.

·         Report on progress in achieving the 2014-15 Corporate Plan in the 2014-15 Annual Report. 

·         Information captured in the internal systems noted above has been used as the basis for the 2014-15 Annual Report.

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GOVERNANCE

What we want to achieve :

An accountable, resilient and dynamic organisation

Strategies to achieve this :

 

·         Governance systems that provide a high standard of accountability

·         A Board that is skilled, diverse, well-informed and committed to continuous improvement

·         A focus at Board level on performance as well as conformance

·         A Board that is at full strength

Actions for 2014-15

Results during the year

·         Review and if necessary update the CFC’s Governance Charter.

 

·         The Board adopted changes to the CFC’s Governance Charter at its April 2015 Board Meeting.

·         This included an updating of the Audit Committee Charter, which is part of the Governance Charter.

·         The updated Governance Charter is available at http://www.museumsandgalleries.act.gov.au/home/about.html

·         Seek filling of the Board’s current and forthcoming vacancies in a timely manner.

·         The Minister appointed two new members to the CFC Board in October 2014 : Ms Virginia Haussegger AM and Justice Richard Refshauge.

·         These appointments brought the Board’s membership to full strength.

·         The Minister reappointed Mr John Hindmarsh AM as Board Chair (1 January 2015 – 31 December 2017) and Mr Eugene Kalenjuk as Board Member (6 March 2015 – 5 March 2018).

·         Ensure Board meeting agendas are arranged to focus on performance as well as conformance, and seek continual improvement in the presentation of Board agenda papers, to ensure efficient use of resources.

·         Board meeting agendas are now arranged to focus on performance as well as conformance.

·         For example, during 2014-15, strategic topics discussed by the Board included : City planning and the City to the Lake project; cultural policy and planning; the CFC’s input into the new ACT Arts Policy; theatre programming; upgrade of the CMAG foyer and improved address to Civic Square; Historic Places future directions planning; and fundraising.

·         Further improvements were made to the presentation of the Board agenda papers during the year, to facilitate Board discussions.

·         Arrange for the CFC's external auditors to meet with the Board at the conclusion of the audit of the 2013-14 Financial Statements and the 2013-14 Statement of Performance.

·         Invite the CFC’s external auditors to each Audit Committee meeting.

·         A representative of the ACT Audit Office attended the October 2014 Board meeting and briefed Members on the audit of the CFC’s 2013-14 Financial Statements and 2013-14 Statement of Performance.

·         A representative of the ACT Audit Office was invited to attend each Audit Committee meeting throughout the year.

·         Assess possible projects for the 2014-15 internal audit/quality assurance program, focusing on key areas of risk, as identified from : the Strategic Risk Management Plan; the Fraud Control Plan; the work of the Audit Committee; and external audits.

·         The Audit Committee discussed and identified topics for internal audit/quality assurance at its January, March and May 2015 meetings.

·         An internal audit into CFC’s supplier arrangements was commenced in 2014‑15.

·         During the year, an internal quality assurance program was developed and implemented, focusing on areas of key risk as identified from items identified in the Strategic Risk Management Plan, Fraud Control Plan, external audits and the work of the Audit Committee.

·         Prepare for the CFC’s participation in an Auditor-General performance audit of arts, cultural and heritage facilities scheduled for 2015-16.

·         The Audit Committee identified a range of strategies for the CFC to undertake in preparation for the performance audit, including commissioning a further updating of the CFC’s Strategic Asset Management Plan.

·         Review and update the CFC’s Strategic Risk Management Plan and Fraud Control Plan. 

·         Remind staff of their responsibilities with regard to fraud control including through fraud awareness training and emails from the CEO and CFO.

·         The Strategic Risk Management Plan and Fraud Control Plan were reviewed by the Audit Committee at its March 2015 meeting.

·         The revised and updated Plans were then approved by the Board at its April 2015 meeting.

·         The CEO’s “start the year” email for 2015 reminded staff of their responsibilities with regard to appropriate use of CFC resources.

·         Fraud Awareness training for new staff was conducted in June 2015.

·         Review and update the Records Management Policy and provide CFC staff with updated training in records management.

·         All staff have been advised of the Records Management Program and their responsibilities to keep accurate records.

·         CFC officers have been designated as the CFC’s records managers, to assist staff and ensure compliance with records management procedures.

·         The CFC Records Management Policy has been reviewed and updated, and will be finalised early in 2015-16.

·         A staff representative from CFC attended various Records and Information Management Community of Practice sessions throughout the year.

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HUMAN RESOURCES

What we want to achieve :

An employer of choice for staff and volunteers

Strategies to achieve this :

 

·         Leadership and motivation from the Board, CEO and senior management team

·         Human resources systems, processes, procedures and policies that focus on continuous improvement

·         Human resource planning that identifies, seeks and develops the skills we need

·         A workplace that is safe and rewarding for staff and volunteers

Actions for 2014-15

Results during the year

·         Ensure Board Members, the CEO and senior managers attend a range of activities across the CFC’s different venues.

·         Board Members, the CEO and/or senior managers attended a range of CFC activities throughout the year, including: theatre opening nights; CMAG exhibition openings; floor talks; special programs at the Historic Places; and a range of other events and activities.

·         Ensure a supportive working environment, including by :

-          continuing to implement the Respect, Equity and Diversity (RED) Framework; and

-          continuing to implement the ACT Government Service’s performance management system.

·         The CEO’s “start the year” email for 2015 emphasised the need to adhere to the Code of Conduct, to display appropriate behaviour in dealing with members of the public and colleagues, and to have performance plans in place for all staff.

·         RED training workshops were provided to staff at CMAG and Historic Places.  Two workshops were held at Historic Places in August 2014 and one at CMAG in June 2015.

·         A system has now been introduced whereby all performance plans are provided to the HR Adviser for placing on personal files, to assist in ensuring that plans are in place for all staff.

·         Ensure sound human resource management, including by :

-          reviewing and updating the Human Resource Management Plan;

-          updating human resource policies on the CFC's shared drive;

-          providing staff with a range of training, professional development and networking opportunities; and

-          recognising staff contributions and achievements, including through award schemes such as the Don Aitkin Award.

·         The draft 2015-18 CFC Human Resource Management Plan was prepared for review during the year and will be finalised in 2015‑16.

·         A rolling review of all Human Resource policies on the CFC’s shared drive commenced in March 2015.

·         CFC staff participated in a range of training/staff development/networking programs in 2014-15.

·         CFC staff members are regularly invited to sit on judging panels, open exhibitions and deliver lectures at other institutions.

·         For example, in 2014-15 the following activities were undertaken by CFC senior staff.

 

The CEO :

-        opened an exhibition of works by Arthur Boyd at Manning Clark House in February 2015;

-        opened an exhibition of works by Ken Knight at the Bungendore Woodwork Gallery in March 2015; and

-        was a Keynote Speaker at the Arts Leadership Forum held in September 2014 (held in collaboration with The Childers Group).

 

The Director, Canberra Theatre Centre attended the Association of Asia Pacific Performing Arts Centres Executive Council meeting in South Korea as Council member in March 2015.

 

The Director, ACT Museum and Galleries :

-        was a speaker at the Arts Leadership Forum held in September 2014 (held in collaboration with The Childers Group); and

-        launched the exhibition at the Capital Chemist Art Awards in September 2014.

·         The presentation of the 2014 Don Aitkin Awards took place on 1 December 2014 in the presence of Emeritus Professor Don Aitkin AO, former Chairman of the CFC.  There were a total of 13 nominations received for nine nominees (including one volunteer).  The award winners were Trudy Collins (HR Adviser), Elysia Fisher (PA to Director, Canberra Theatre Centre), Dale Middleby (Senior Curator Social History, CMAG) and Peter Welch (Historic Places).

·         Continue to implement workplace health and safety and injury management improvement strategies, with support from Shared Services and with regular reports to the CFC Board, including on key workplace safety risks and controls.

·         Undertake an updated Gap Analysis to identify any areas that need attention in relation to workplace safety.

·         Implement Wellbeing in the Workplace initiatives.

·         A report on workplace safety is provided at all Board meetings.  In addition to these regular reports, a further report is provided to the Board each six months on key safety risks identified for CFC workplaces, and how these risks are being managed.

·         The CFC Work Health and Safety (WHS) Committee met in August and November 2014 and in February and May 2015 to discuss WHS issues across the organisation. Meetings of Work Health and Safety Representatives were also held in each area of the CFC throughout the year.

·         The Shared Services Injury Management and Safety Team commenced work with the CFC during 2014-15 on developing a total WHS Management System for the CFC.  The system will be finalised in 2015-16.

·         Wellbeing in the Workplace initiatives continued to be implemented including :

-        a morning tea promoting the services of Healthier Work for staff in October 2014;

-        flu vaccinations in April 2015;

-        promotion of the Employee Assistance Provider service for employees;

-        promotion of the Healthier Me Program; and

-        installation of sit/stand desks as requested.

·         Hold regular meetings of the Agency Consultative Committee (ACC), to ensure effective management/staff/union consultation and well-informed decision-making, and to encourage sharing of information.

·         Consultations took place with unions on a range of workplace matters during the year, including on proposed restructuring of the ACT Museums and Galleries senior management structure.

·         The CFC facilitated workplace visits by union representatives to enable them to meet with members and prospective members.

·         The CFC convenes meetings of the ACC when needed and has called for new nominations for this committee.

·         Provide volunteers with training, support and recognition, including through award schemes such as the Don Aitkin Award.

·         During 2014-15, National Trust volunteers provided 297.5 hours service at Lanyon, while other volunteers provided 1,024 hours service at Lanyon, Calthorpes’ House and Mugga-Mugga.

·         During the year, the CFC provided its volunteers with a range of training and support opportunities, together with events to recognise their contribution.  This included two morning tea events and a lunch with a guest speaker who spoke on topic of Indigenous cultural awareness.  ACT Historic Places volunteers are also invited to key front-of-house team meetings and were involved in emergency training for the first time during 2014-15.

·         Information regarding the Don Aitkin Award.

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FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT

What we want to achieve :

An organisation with long-term financial sustainability

Strategies to achieve this :

 

·         High standards of financial management and reporting

·         Maximisation of government income

·         Maximisation of own-sourced income

·         Analysis of own-sourced income and margins from operational activities to identify ways to grow revenues

·         A fundraising strategy that guides how we will develop new income sources through fundraising

·         Long-term positive cash flow

·         Adoption of reserves policies

·         Efficient work practices

Actions for 2014-15

Results during the year

·         Achieve financial outcomes that :

-        minimise the cost to Government per visitor/patron;

-        maximise own-sourced revenue;

-        maintain appropriate working capital; and

-        allow, where possible, business upgrades funded from internal resources.

·         For 2014-15, the CFC achieved a cost to government per estimated visitor/patron of $22.49 compared with a target of $24.83, and 51.4% own sourced revenue, compared with a target of 40.8%.

·         Further details and variance explanations are provided in the Statement of Performance at Attachment 1.

·         Reports on cash flow analysis are discussed at each meeting of the Audit Committee of the CFC Board.

·         Good theatre trading results for 2014-15 allowed a number of business upgrades to be funded from internal resources during the year.  These included improved signage and new foyer monitors for the Centre.

·         Increase the theatre reserve, where good theatre trading results and the overall health of the CFC budget allow this.

·         Due to good theatre trading results in 2014-15, including from major shows such as Sweet Charity and Le Noir, an addition of $300,000 was made to the theatre reserve at the end of 2014-15.

·         Implement and monitor a 2014-15 internal budget based on agreed budget principles and incorporating strategies to address a potential downturn in the ACT economy as a result of the Federal Budget, and consequent impact on theatre related revenues.

·         The 2014-15 internal budget included strategies to address salary and CPI increases, and a potential downturn in the ACT economy.

·         The internal budget was monitored by the Audit Committee throughout the year, with progress reported to each Board meeting during 2014-15.

·         A mid-year review of the internal budget took place in February 2015.

 

·         Develop well-researched and argued bids for the 2015-16 ACT Budget process, for strategic initiatives that support the CFC’s operations or improve/extend CFC programs, and which lead to better cultural outcomes for the community.

·         Concept briefs were developed for Ministerial consideration, and CFC bids for the 2015-16 ACT Budget process were finalised and submitted in February 2015.

·         The following CFC initiatives were funded in the 2015-16 ACT Budget :

-        $4.109 million over three years (2015-16 to 2017-18) to upgrade the Canberra Theatre Centre, including : new seating and carpet, and stage renovation in the Canberra Theatre; new carpet for The Playhouse; upgrade of the main foyer bar area; refurbishment of Green Room facilities, dressing rooms, backstage and Stage Door Areas; and works to improve security, electrical and fire safety, heating and air-conditioning; and

-        $0.099 million in 2015-16 to upgrade the storm water system at the Lanyon Heritage Centre (the former Nolan Gallery Building), in order to support its use as an education centre and a collection management space.

·         Progress the CFC’s fundraising efforts under the Board’s leadership, through implementation of the CFC’s 2014-15 Fundraising Strategy.

·         The CFC’s 2014-15 Fundraising Strategy provided the framework for discussions about fundraising at each Board meeting during the year, and the basis for fundraising efforts.

·         Fundraising projects for the year included : support for the celebration of the Canberra Theatre’s 50th Birthday; the launch of the Canberra Region Treasures Fund to support acquisitions by CMAG; and support for the CMAG exhibitions INK REMIX : Contemporary Art from mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, and World of Cricket from The Bradman Museum.

·         Implement an upgrade to the payroll system to introduce electronic timesheets.

·         The CFC’s Finance team is reviewing its payroll processing needs before committing to a payroll upgrade.

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INFRASTRUCTURE AND SYSTEMS

What we want to achieve :

Support for the delivery of high quality cultural experiences

Strategies to achieve this :

 

·         High standards of asset management

·         IT systems that deliver business outcomes

·         Periodic reviews of administrative, financial and customer service systems

Actions for 2014-15

Results during the year

·           Monitor IT assets across the CFC to ensure effective use of IT assets and to explore opportunities for cost reductions in IT expenditure.

·         During the year, IT assets continued to be monitored for best cost effectiveness use.  Any equipment or programs surplus to requirements were removed to control costs.

·           Continue to implement, and further review, Business Continuity Plans and Disaster Recovery Plans covering each area of the CFC.

·         The CFC’s Business Continuity Plan and Disaster Recovery Plan were reviewed and provided to the Board meeting of April 2015 for noting by the Board.

·           Implement cyclical maintenance programs at each site, to ensure the upkeep of assets across the CFC.

·         Cyclical maintenance needs were taken into account in assessing priorities for the 2014-15 capital upgrade program.

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COMMUNICATION

What we want to achieve :

Engagement with our stakeholders

Strategies to achieve this :

 

·         A communication strategy that delivers our business objectives by providing timely, accurate and relevant information that influences the attitudes and behaviour of our stakeholders

·         Regular engagement with our stakeholders

·         Periodic consultation with our stakeholders

Actions for 2014-15

Results during the year

·         Use the CFC’s Communication Strategy to identify key messages and target audiences.

·         The CFC’s Communication Strategy continued to be used in 2014-15, as a basis for identifying key messages in speeches, reports etc.

·         The current Communications Strategy, which covers the period 2011-16, will be reviewed and updated during 2015-16.

·         Ensure regular contact between the CFC’s CEO and :

-          the Minister’s office; and

-          the Community Services Directorate, as the CFC’s parent Directorate*.

*Note: New Administrative Arrangements were introduced for the ACT in July 2014, following the appointment of an additional Minister.  Under these Arrangements, the Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate (CMTEDD) is the parent Directorate for the CFC.

·         The CFC’s CEO held regular meetings with the Minister’s Arts Adviser throughout 2014-15, and also held a number of meetings during the year with the Economic Development area of CMTEDD.

·         The CFC Chairman and the CEO held strategic meetings with the Director General, Economic Development and Deputy Director General, Arts, Business Events, Sports and Tourism in July 2014 and March 2015 in order to discuss a range of priority matters.

·         The Minister attended the June 2015 meeting of the CFC Board for a discussion about the CFC’s major achievements for 2014-15 and key priorities for 2015-16.

 

·         Continue to implement revised operating arrangements for the CFC’s three advisory committees, recognising that these committees not only represent an important source of expert advice to the CFC but also involve the wider community in the work of the organisation. 

·         Provide support for these committees, including through provision of secretariat services.

·         Review the operation of the committees under the revised arrangements, in late 2014-15.

·         The first advisory committee meeting of 2014-15 was held as a plenary workshop for all three committees on 24 November 2014.  The workshop included a presentation by the CEO, together with breakout sessions to allow the committees to meet individually.

·         The workshop was followed by drinks and a book launch : The Book Of The Board by David Fishel.

·         Individual advisory committee meetings were then held as follows :

-        Canberra Theatre Centre Advisory Committee, 18 March 2015;

-        Historic Places Advisory Committee, 29 April 2015; and

-        Canberra Museum and Gallery Advisory Committee, 30 April 2015.

·         A final, plenary session was held on 1 June 2015, where the three committees discussed input into the CFC’s 2015-16 Corporate Plan.

·         A review of the committees’ operation commenced in late 2014-15 and will be completed in 2015-16, prior to the completion of the committees’ current terms, on 30 June 2016.

 

·         Further develop collaborations with relevant cultural and tourist bodies including : peak national bodies dealing with cultural matters; the national cultural institutions; other cultural organisations; tourism organisations; and diplomatic missions, in order to extend the CFC’s profile and involvement in cultural and tourism sector initiatives.

·         During the year, the CEO was a member of the :

-        Australiana Fund Canberra Committee;

-        Tourism Industry Advisory Council of the Canberra Business Chamber;

-        ACT Inclusion Council; and

-        ACT Regional Council of the Australian Institute of Management.

·         The Canberra Theatre Centre Director was a member of the :

-        Live Performance Australia Executive Council;

-        Executive Committee of the Australian Performing Arts Centres Association; and

-        Executive Council of the Association of Asia Pacific Performing Arts Centres.

·         The Director, ACT Museums and Galleries was a member of the :

-        ACT Arts in Health Committee; and

-        Australia Council for the Arts Pool of Peers.

·         CMAG’s Assistant Director, Exhibitions and Collections was a member of the :

-        ACT Legislative Assembly Art Advisory Committee; and

-        DISACT (Disaster ACT) Disaster Recovery Committee.

·         The Canberra Theatre Centre’s Education Officer was a member of the ACT Drama Teachers Association Board.

·         Work with The Childers Group in implementing initiatives to support the ACT arts community, including by jointly presenting an arts leadership forum.

·         On 1 September 2014, an Arts Leadership Forum was jointly presented by The Childers Group and the CFC at the Centre.  The Forum attracted over 100 participants and provided a range of plenary and breakout sessions on arts leadership topics, as well as many opportunities for networking.  Judged by feedback on the day, in social media, and on evaluation forms, the Forum was seen to be a successful and welcome initiative for the ACT and region arts community to come together and discuss issues of importance and relevance for the sector.

·         On 24 November 2014, the CFC and The Childers Group hosted the Canberra launch of the new edition of national arts consultant David Fishel’s The Book of the Board at CMAG.

·         On 25 November 2014, the CFC and The Childers Group hosted a one day Arts Board Workshop presented by David Fishel, targeted at ACT arts board members and CEOs/general managers, in The Playhouse reception room at the Centre.

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GROWING AND LEVERAGING OFF OUR ASSETS

What we want to achieve :

Growth in targeted areas where we can add value

Strategies to achieve this :

 

·         Reinvestment of trading surpluses into asset development or building up reserves

·         Additional responsibilities in key areas such as historic places – with sufficient resources to carry these out

·         Involvement as a key player in Canberra’s development as a city and in Civic’s development as the city’s heart

Actions for 2014-15

Results during the year

·         Work with other agencies on initiatives to plan future directions of the city centre and the future provision of cultural facilities in Civic, including a major new theatre, within the framework of the City Plan and through participation in the City to Lake project.

·         During the year, the CFC continued to play an active role in these initiatives, including through :

-        the CEO’s attendance at the City and Northbourne Urban Design Framework workshops in March and April 2015; and

-        the CEO’s attendance at a workshop by the ACT Minister for Planning on the ACT Statement of Planning Intent.

·         The next stage of studies into a major new theatre was progressed during the year, with the appointment of specialist architects and theatre technical designers to prepare a detailed facility area analysis as a basis for a concept design for the new facility.

·         The CFC Board discussed Civic planning matters at each of its meetings during 2014-15.

·         Continue to ensure that the CFC’s needs are addressed in development of the Civic Square precinct, including through :

-        pursuing the outcomes of CFC-commissioned studies into car parking needs of theatre patrons;

-        exploring how the CFC’s activities can support businesses such as cafes and restaurants, and how those businesses can contribute to a cultural precinct; and

-        seeking to ensure that any redevelopment of the car park site adjacent to CMAG addresses the needs of the cultural precinct, including the enhancement of CMAG’s visibility, and delivering a suitable experience for theatre patrons.

·         During the year, the CFC continued to play an active role in Canberra parking and transportation systems and to emphasise the importance of sufficient car parking provision for the viability of the Centre, including at the planning workshops identified above.

·         The CFC initiated discussions with the Parking Operations area, to discuss implementation of pay parking in the evenings in the areas around the Centre as from
1 September 2015
.  These discussions will continue in 2015-16, with a view to ensuring smooth implementation of the new arrangements.

·         The CFC commissioned a small research project on the economic impact to Canberra of major theatre shows, including impacts for Civic food outlets from pre-theatre dining.

 

·         Explore opportunities for cooperative activities in the Civic Square Precinct, including cooperative activities between CMAG and the Canberra Theatre Centre, with the Civic Library, and with Craft ACT.

·         The CMAG Café has an agreement with the Civic Library whereby patrons are able to bring takeaway coffees into the Library.

·         During the year, CMAG and the Canberra Theatre Centre collaborated on projects including :

-        a wombat-themed activities morning at CMAG in conjunction with a performance of Wombat Stew at the Canberra Theatre in July 2014;

-        CMAG on Sunday – Book Week Special in August 2014 with visiting characters from The Gruffalo, which performed at the Canberra Theatre in September 2014; and

-        a panel discussion, floor talk and film screenings at CMAG in conjunction with performances of the play Kelly at The Playhouse in June 2015.

·         Coinciding with the production of Storm Boy at Canberra Theatre Centre, the Lu Rees Archive organised a Colin Thiele exhibition at the Civic Library from 2 to 28 June 2015.

·         The CMAG exhibition A potted history of Canberra region ceramics was programmed to coincide with Stepping Up - The 2015 Australian Ceramics Triennale coordinated by Craft ACT.

·         Throughout the year, CMAG provided a display cabinet in the foyer to display objects available for purchase or on current display in Craft ACT.

·         Work with Civic Square neighbours, including Civic Library, and the ACT Legislative Assembly, on accommodation strategies for the precinct.

·         The CFC commissioned a study of options to enlarge CMAG’s foyer, to improve its address to Civic Square, including options for Craft ACT to have a ground floor presence for a retail outlet.

·         The CFC worked with Craft ACT and the ACT Legislative Assembly to explore options for accommodating Assembly support functions in North Building, once the Assembly increases in size after the 2016 ACT election.

·         During the year, the Building Services Manager, Canberra Theatre Centre :

-        liaised with the ACT Legislative Assembly Director of Business Support and his staff; and

-        provided “landlord” type building services to the Civic Library.

·         Work with other agencies in exploring the opportunity for managing one of the Sydney Ancher tower blocks on Northbourne Avenue as a house museum, together with complementary usages. 

·         During the year, the CFC continued to explore this opportunity, including with Economic Development and with the ACT Heritage Council.

·         Work with other agencies in undertaking economic impact studies to guide future directions.

·         The CFC provided data for inclusion in the Economic Overview of the Arts in the ACT, which was released on 30 June 2015.

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B.2.2  CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE

Purpose : To be Canberra’s leading performing arts centre

 

PROGRAMMING

What we want to achieve :

A diverse program that creates a leadership position for the Canberra Theatre Centre and an identity for Canberra

Strategies to achieve this :

 

·         Regular visits from leading performing arts companies including high profile “star vehicles”

·         Nurturing local performing arts companies including national advocacy

·         Active participation in local and national creative development, including links with partner venue and companies

·         Support for those who take the financial risk in presenting at the Centre, both financial and marketing

·         A calendar of events that delivers a diversity of genres and appeals to a diverse audience

Actions for 2014-15

Results during the year

·         Provide high quality programming through the Centre’s 2014 and 2015 Subscription Seasons, in order to bring leading performing arts companies to Canberra and develop a strong “artistic footprint” for the Centre.

·         During 2014-15 the following productions from the 2014 Subscription Season, Collected Works 2014, were presented :

-        Patyegarang                            

-        Circa: S

-        The Importance of Being Earnest

-        The Dream

-        The Magic Flute

-        The Wharf Revue 2014

-        La Fille Mal Gardee

·         The Centre launched its 2015 Subscription Season, Collected Works 2015, on 20 October 2014, comprising 16 core shows with two additional shows. The 2015 Season Shows feature productions from :

-        The Australian Ballet

-        Bangarra Dance Theatre

-        CIRCA

-        Queensland Theatre Company

-        Bell Shakespeare

-        Sydney Dance Company

-        Sydney Theatre Company

-        State Theatre Company of South Australia

-        BIG hART

-        Circus Oz

 

·         The following productions from the 2015 Subscription Season, Collected Works 2015, were presented during 2014-15 :

-        Mother & Son

-        Beyond

-        Black Diggers

-        As You Like It

-        Monkey … Journey to the West

-        Frame of Mind

-        The Importance of Being Miriam

-        Giselle

-        Storm Boy

-        Kelly

-        Additional show Sweet Charity

-        Additional show Count Basie Orchestra

As of 30 June 2015, the Centre had 2,355 subscribers for its 2015 season, and had sold 16,625 tickets to Collected Works 2015 productions, which makes it the Centre’s most successful Collected Works program to date.

·         Build on legacies from Canberra’s Centenary, especially the partnership with BIG hART, to deliver projects in 2015 and 2016.

·         The Centre continued to work with BIG hART as a company in residence, and in collaboration with the Cooma Community, towards the presentation of Ghosts in the Scheme in September 2015.

·         A further project with BIG hART is planned for 2016.

·         Program productions outside the Subscription Seasons and through shared risk ventures with commercial presenters, in order to keep the venue active and increase the range of performing arts available to the Canberra community.

·         The Centre delivered the following programs outside the 2015 Subscription Season :

-        Bell Shakespeare Schools Festival

-        Wombat Stew

-        The Gruffalo

-        Once Were Leaders

-        ­Horrible Histories

-        Angelique Kidjo

-        Le Noir

-        The 26-Storey Treehouse

-        The Listies

-        Storm Large

-        Tim Rogers

-        Geoffrey Robertson QC

-        Fast+Fresh – a 10-minute play festival for schools.

·         Support existing and develop new relationships with presenters, to expand their use of the Centre’s venues and services, and to increase the range of performing arts available to the Canberra community. 

·         The Centre’s marketing team provided a range of value-added kits, guidance and actions in order to support venue hirers, build stronger relationships, and enhance the hirers’ experience.

·         Successful venue hires in 2014-15 included :

-        Missy Higgins

-        ­The White Album

-        Jimmy Barnes

-        James Reyne

-        The Ten Tenors

-        Red Bull: Flying Bach

-        Bjorn Again

-        Passenger

-        Pink Floyd Experience

-        Suzi Quatro

-        The Village People

-        Canberra Comedy Festival

·         Support local creative development, including through :

-          promoting local productions in national touring forums;

-          programming events that showcase local talent, and supporting emerging/early career artists in the performing arts;

-          holding master classes, workshops and forums for local practitioners to engage with visiting companies; and

-          providing marketing support for local companies and other presenters that use the Courtyard Studio.

·         The Centre provided support to :

-        Tuggeranong Arts Centre with Touch;

-        Free Rain Theatre in presenting Mary Poppins;

-        James Batchelor in presenting Metasystems and Faces;

-        Short+ Sweet, which offers the opportunity to writers, directors and performers to realise new 10-minute plays; and

-        Elizabeth Cameron Dalman with Mirramu, for two new works.

·         The Centre’s marketing team provided significant support to local artists and organisations that hired the Studio, including James Batchelor, Free Rain Theatre Company, and both the Fast+Fresh and Short+Sweet theatre festivals.

·         The Centre sponsored the creative development of That Place In Between by Cadi McCarthy.

·         The Centre’s education team organised workshops and master classes as follows :

-        a workshop for Caitlin McEwan, winner of Fast+Fresh 2014 with the Assistant Director of The Importance of Being Earnest on directing skills and creative expression;

-        a workshop for the Year 10-12 music classes of Trinity Christian College and Burgmann Anglican College with the cast and musicians of Opera Australia’s The Magic Flute;

-        a technical master class for the Teacher-Directors of the Bell Shakespeare Schools Festival with the Centre’s Technical Staff;

-        a workshop for student stage managers for the Bell Shakespeare Schools Festival, with the Stage Manager for Bell Shakespeare’s The Dream and the Centre’s Technical Staff;

-        a workshop for Canberra Girls Grammar Junior School with the principal ballerina from West Australian Ballet’s La Fille Mal Gardee;

-        workshops with the physical theatre company CIRCA for Canberra Grammar School, Melba/Copeland College, Elementz Rhythmic Gymnastics and Warehouse Circus;

-        a workshop for a youth indigenous group with the Black Diggers company, on a career as an Indigenous artist;

-        school workshops for schools across the ACT with Sydney Dance Company Frame of Mind; and

-        outreach programs into local and regional schools focusing on the music and themes of Storm Boy.   263 students across seven schools as far away as Cootamundra benefited from these programs.

·         The Centre’s education team organised the following meetings, workshops and other activities for the Canberra Youth Theatre Ambassadors :

-        a workshop with the Resident Director for Circa’s S;

-        a workshop with the Ballet Mistress for West Australian Ballet’s La Fille Mal Gardee;

-        audition assistance;

-        a welcome and  introduction to the theatre for the show Black Diggers; and

-        a Directors discussion with the Director of Storm Boy.

·         The Centre arranged for 137 students from 20 schools to participate in the Fast+Fresh
10-
minute play festival, offering students the opportunity to access playwrighting workshops by Alex Broun; dramaturgy from Peter Wilkins both in-school and at the Centre; professional feedback from three judges working in the industry; and a chance to perform at the Centre’s Courtyard Studio.

·         Participate in industry organisations e.g. Live Performance Australia, OZPAC, Australian Performing Arts Centres Association.

·         The Director of the Centre participated as an Executive Council member for Live Performance Australia, Australian Performing Arts Centres Association and the Association of Asia Pacific Performing Arts Centres.

·         Develop a program to celebrate the Centre’s 50th anniversary in 2015, including through the 2015 Subscription Season.

·         The Centre developed a brand logo for the Centre’s 50th anniversary which was used across all season marketing materials during the year.

·         The anniversary was celebrated with the Australian Ballet making a special visit to Canberra in May 2015 for a season of Giselle.  The Ballet gave the opening performance at the Canberra Theatre in 1965.  With the generous support of Hindmarsh, the Centre was able to sponsor the use of the Canberra Symphony Orchestra to perform as pit orchestra for the Canberra season of Giselle.

·         The Centre held a Family Fun Open Day with over 2000 visitors, to allow Canberra families to join in the birthday celebrations.

·         A Gala Dinner had also been planned to celebrate the anniversary, but was cancelled due to scheduling issues.  Patrons who had purchased tickets were invited to attend a special pre-show cocktail function, with a cake cutting ceremony, before the opening performance of the show Kelly.  This event was also attended by current staff, former staff and other local arts personalities who had enjoyed a long history or affiliation with the Centre.

 

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Figure B.2.2a : Graphs indicating venue usage by genre and locality in 2014-15

Canberra Theatre Centre - Venue usage by genre

Canberra Theatre Centre - Venue usage by locality

 

MARKETING AND AUDIENCE DEVELOPMENT

What we want to achieve :

A loyal and growing audience

Strategies to achieve this :

 

·         Loyalty, engagement and repeat attendance are promoted by : all areas of the business working together to create a high quality experience for patrons; increased sophistication of patron knowledge to drive repeat attendance; use of social media and other means to engage audiences; value-adding through meet-the-artist, director forums etc.

·         Market data is used to target audiences and influence programming

·         Research is commissioned to better understand our existing audiences and target others

Action for 2014-15

Results during the year

·         Provide value-adding opportunities that enhance the overall patron experience, including :

-          pre-show forums, post-show question and answer sessions;

-          “meet the artist” opportunities, including on opening nights; and

-          participation in cultural precinct planning, to ensure the quality of the overall patron experience.

·         In 2014-15, the following value-adding opportunities were presented :

-        pre-show forums for Patyegarang,  S, The Importance of Being Earnest, La Fille Mal Gardee, Mother & Son, Circa’s Beyond, Monkey … Journey to the West, and Storm Boy;

-        a post show Q&A for The Importance of Being Earnest, The Wharf Revue 2014, Mother & Son, Black Diggers, Monkey, Storm Boy, Frame of Mind, and Kelly;

-        panel discussions at Parliament House for The Magic Flute, As You Like It, and Black Diggers;

-        an open class for La Fille Mal Gardee;

-        Wombat Stew included a “Mums & Cubs” craft session at the National Zoo of Australia and post performance craft sessions at CMAG;

-        Quantum Leap Youth Dance Ensemble’s Boundless included two pre-show forums for their school matinees;

-        State Theatre Company of South Australia’s The Importance of Being Earnest included a post-show Q&A with the cast for the school matinee;

-        Bell Shakespeare’s The Dream included two pre-show forums for their school matinees; and

-        CDP Theatre Producers’ The Gruffalo included story-reading sessions at CMAG’s Book Week Open Day; a “Mums & Cubs” craft session at the National Zoo of Australia; appearances at Westfield Belconnen and Floriade; and pre-performance arts and craft activities in the foyer of the Centre.

·         Ensure customer/patron satisfaction with their visit to, and experiences of, the Centre’s venues and presentations, including by surveying audiences.  Use information gained from surveys to improve facilities and services.

·         The Centre achieved a 95.1% approval rate with patrons, based on post-performance surveys for a range of productions during 2014-15.

·         Post-performance surveys were conducted with the school groups attending four children’s performances, resulting in a 95% approval rating.

·         Survey results indicated that activities associated with children’s performances were highly regarded and this will be considered for future shows.

·         Ensure Front of House business operations and customer services are kept at a high standard. 

·         Analyse Front of House data and act on this, both to increase commercial returns and to improve the patron experience. 

·         During the year, the Centre’s Front of House manual for Patron Service Officers was updated and revised, to ensure a continued high level of service to customers.

·         Six additional terminals were purchased, to facilitate bar and merchandise sales away from the main bar area.

·         Front of house data was analysed during the year to improve stock offerings and facilitate operational efficiencies.  

·         Maintain and develop Box Office services by ensuring that ticketing system capabilities are fully utilised to meet business and customer needs. 

·         Ticketing services were provided to the following external venues :

-        ANU Arts Centre (Legally Blonde);

-        Parliament House (Floriade events);

-        National Arboretum Canberra (Voices in the Forest);

-        Belconnen Theatre (Cinderella); and

-        Grounds of Government House (Canberra Symphony Orchestra Shell Prom Concert).

·         Use the Centre’s venue branding to promote the productions presented at the venue as being of a consistently high and reliable quality, and to support venue hirers in marketing their product.  Ensure all connections with the Centre’s brand are authentic, including use of external signage.  Maintain brand presence including through social media and digital marketing.

·         The Centre’s marketing team undertook brand advertising through media buying associated with the various productions in print (The Canberra Times, City News, Canberra Weekly) and on television (WIN-TV, Prime, Channel 10); maintained a flow of information and branding through various venue screens; and branded all advertising and promotional collateral produced.

·         The Centre maintained brand consistency and credibility in the promotion of its 2014 and 2015 Subscription Seasons.

·         The Centre provided marketing support to assist third party presenters of contemporary music to achieve higher patron attendance and sold-out shows.  This is expected to lead to the potential to attract larger name acts in future.

·         The Centre’s social media was bolstered by interacting with bloggers with large followers, and with online social groups including 101Humans.

·         Targeted Google Ads campaigns were implemented as an integral element of overall marketing campaigns.

·         The Centre’s policy on access to, and use of, marketing resources, is available at https://canberratheatrecentre.com.au/about-us/who-we-are/

·         Develop e-business through web-based marketing and undertake research to assess audience attendance patterns. 

·         The Centre’s database was updated and used in targeted e-business activity. 

·         The Centre’s website was updated to allow the Centre to market shows more effectively, including by linking the patron database with the website and with emails, to allow for a tailored patron experience.

·         Research questions used by the Centre were re-evaluated and refined, and research was undertaken across all performances to assess attendance patterns and satisfaction levels.

·         Post-show survey responses were evaluated, to assess patrons’ preferences and media habits, and therefore to provide greater insight into audience characteristics.

·         Implement a groups booking initiative to enhance income and support venue hirers.

·         During 2014-15, group sales focused on social groups, bus companies, playgroups and corporations. 

·         Group bookings were implemented through internal marketing and sales staff, as well as external group sales specialists, on selected broad appeal shows such as Sweet Charity and Mother & Son.

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COMMUNITY INITIATIVES

What we want to achieve :

A connection between the whole community and the performing arts

Strategies to achieve this :

 

·         Initiatives that address special needs in the community

·         Programs that reach out to those who might not otherwise have the opportunity to experience live theatre

·         Connections with the education system and schools

·         Workshop facilitation

Actions for 2014-15

Results during the year

·         Implement access initiatives including through facilities and services such as:

-        captioning services and audio loops for patrons with hearing impairments;

-        audio description and tactile tours for patrons with vision impairments;

-        the Companion Card scheme, whereby a carer attending theatre with a patron can access a complimentary ticket; and

-        designated spaces in the auditoriums for wheelchair access.

·         Encourage venue hirers to provide targeted access for patrons with special needs.

·         Participate in access recognition programs that recognise and promote accessibility of venues for people with disabilities.  

·         The following access initiatives were facilitated during 2014-15.

Tactile tour, audio description and captioned performances

-        A tactile tour, audio description and captioning were provided for a performance of The Importance of Being Earnest, The Dream, Mother & Son, Black Diggers, As You Like It, Monkey … Journey to the West, The Importance of Being Miriam, and Kelly. Captioning was provided for Storm Boy.

Audio loops and Companion Cards

-        Audio loops (FM Radio Assisted Hearing System), and Companion Cards (National Companion Card Program) for people who require their carers to be present when visiting the theatre) are available for all productions presented at the Centre.

·         The Centre also provides designated spaces in the auditorium for wheelchair access.

·         During the year, the Centre’s marketing team continued to promote access facilities through all marketing channels including a large print brochure and a specific access flier.

·         Implement the Social Capital Program whereby tickets purchased by the Centre are distributed to special interest organisations, providing scope for people who would not normally attend live theatre the opportunity to do so.

·         During the year, the Centre’s Social Capital program distributed 294 tickets to the value of $13,301 to the following charities and organisations :

-        Wiradjuri Echoes Dance Company

-        YWCA of Canberra

-        Menslink

-        Arthritis ACT

-        Smith Family

-        Bosom Buddies

-        Belconnen Arts Centre Parkinson Dance Group

-        Music at Midday email list patrons

-        Black Mountain School

-        Crescent School, Goulburn

-        Barnardos

-        Canberra Legacy

-        CanTeen

·         Host the Music at Midday series of concerts, which allow older patrons, including nursing home residents, to attend live theatre.

·         Twelve Music at Midday concerts were held in the 2014-15 year raising a total of $11,651 for the following charities :

-        MS Australia ACT/NSW/VIC

-        Menslink

-        Doris Women’s Refuge

-        Australian Federal Police Legacy Inc

-        Austism Asperger Act Inc

-        Bosom Buddies ACT Inc

·         Support theatre education resources through fundraising activities as part of the 2014-15 Fundraising Strategy.

·         Maintain and grow links with schools.

·         The Centre’s Donation Appeal was continued, seeking support for the Centre’s theatre education programs.

·         Hindmarsh, one of Australia’s leading property and construction companies, continued as a principal sponsor of the Centre in 2014-15, with a three-year commitment to help progress the Centre’s education activities.