3 December 2020

We’re planning for next year’s Finance Conference, our largest virtual event yet. Silvia Corradini, Conference Production Manager at the NHF, outlines what this conference can offer housing associations at a time when the finance function is as vital as it’s ever been, and as we all consider what the future may hold.

Our conferences and exhibitions this year have been a journey like no other – for speakers, sponsors, delegates and for all of us at the National Housing Federation. In the spring, we were faced with a huge challenge, the likes of which we hadn’t had to deal with before. But we soon realised that you don’t have to be in the same room to make valuable connections, so in June we launched our NHFVirtual programme.

Since then, our portfolio of virtual events has gone from strength to strength and we are now confident we can take on the next challenge and launch our largest virtual event: Housing Finance Conference and Exhibition 2021. This will take in 102 speakers, 30 hours of content (live and on demand), 13 sponsors, 600+ delegates, and five days of virtual networking.

In times of unprecedented crisis, finance becomes a critical function to help companies address both the immediate requirements to maintain business operations, and to ensure that organisations are stronger than ever once we emerge from the crisis.

During the last nine months the sector has learnt to move faster, getting closer to residents and making connections and new partnerships. When I speak to our members, I’m always impressed with how the sector is taking up this new challenge and how members are adapting to this changing landscape with great resilience.

We are living in a time when it’s more important than ever to give residents more immediate and more personalised support, and when we think about the finance and treasury functions we have to remain focused on the concept of connectivity with residents. Flexibility, reliability and immediacy have to be built in to the sector’s core competencies and connectivity.

I’m excited about what we, as a sector, are doing, and we are fortunate to have amongst our speakers people who have recognised the importance of the role the finance and treasury functions play in safeguarding organisations, and connecting the dots between financial and operational impact.

We have structured the agenda in such a way to help you make the most out of the collaborative nature of the sessions, as well as ensuring you get the full immersive experience through our keynote speakers, panel debates and case studies.

The opportunity that you, as a group, have to drive meaningful change in your organisation and the sector, as well as sustainable value to our businesses, should not be underestimated, and during this conference we will be discussing many of the ways in which we can take advantage of these opportunities.

As always, I’ll be looking for ‘what’s next’ and I’d challenge you to do the same. We know what the past looks like, what the immediate future is, but finding out what those game-changers are that will differentiate is what matters. There’s always the chance to ask the question that might change everything.

I look forward to meeting you all virtually in March.

Silvia Corradini

Silvia Corradini is Conference Production Manager at the National Housing Federation.

How we can drive meaningful change in the sector and plan for the future