Human Tissue Authority

The regulator for human tissue and organs

Resources - people and finance

Our people – workforce and leadership






Starting count – payroll





Starting count – non-payroll





Expected transfers in – payroll





Expected transfers out – payroll





Changes in non-payroll staff





TOTAL at end quarter





As a small, expert regulator, the HTA has long recognised a strategic risk related to staff recruitment and retention – in particular our vulnerability to the loss of experienced staff undertaking our frontline regulatory work. In response to this risk, we implemented our People Strategy, which has gone some way towards mitigating our human resource risk through initiatives such as flexible working and a career development scheme. However, retaining staff expertise, the ability to recruit high quality candidates and the time to induct and train new members of staff have been identified as key areas we need to address to improve our resilience and sustainability.

In line with our strategic vision to be operating in a more sustainable, resilient and agile way by 2021, and as part of our organisational transformation programme, we will introduce key changes to our People Strategy in 2018/19. These will include a greater emphasis on remote working by design, a new approach to induction and training and a renewed focus on line management and developing our staff.

In further support of this vision, we intend to implement some structural changes aimed at ensuring we lead our people effectively through this period of change. We will consider the introduction of a new senior inspector role, focussed on providing technical expertise and leading on induction, training and quality assurance.

During 2018/19, it is expected that:

  • the HTA will have 3.5 FTEs who are classified as executive senior managers, within the total of 51 FTEs;
  • there will be one FTE Human Resources member of staff within the full complement of 51 FTEs;
  • the training budget will equate to around 1.5 per cent of the pay bill; 
  • we do not anticipate any non-payroll staff.

Efficiency and productivity 

We understand the impact that licence fees have on the establishments we regulate. However, after several years of making efficiencies, holding budgets steady and absorbing new work, in 2018/19 we have introduced an increase in the income from fees to maintain the high quality of our regulation and make the necessary improvements to our operations and infrastructure.

We continue to work hard to keep fee increases to a minimum, and seek opportunities to offset inflationary costs with income from other sources such as sub-letting part of our accommodation.

As an organisation, we remain committed to continuous improvement and delivering value for money for both the public and the establishments we license. We also recognise that following many years of making efficiencies, we are a very lean organisation. We remain committed to delivering our core functions to a high standard, finding further efficiencies in the way we work where possible, and the importance of focussing on outcomes that really matter to the public and professionals.

To achieve this we will undertake work to develop a deeper understanding of those outcomes and the impact that they have on patient safety and public confidence. We will use the data we generate to inform our risk-based approach, identify trends and to share learning with our licensed establishments and the sectors we regulate.

In 2018/19 we will also consider how we can carry out further performance related work including how we make appropriate comparisons to know that we are delivering value for money.

The HTA has long-established links with other health arm’s length bodies, including a shared staffing arrangement with the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority where our Director of Resources and Head of Finance work across both organisations. A recent review of the shared services arrangement concluded that the functions are delivered appropriately, however there are a number of recommendations centred on improving communication, rebalancing the weighting across roles and areas where further collaborative work could benefit both organisations. In 2018/19 we will implement the recommendations – continuing to make the most of opportunities to deliver value for money, and improving our resilience by building on our strategic partnerships with other organisations.

Digital delivery and technology

The organisational transformation programme provides an opportunity for us to critically review how we use business technology to support our day-to-day work, and explore the contribution that systems and data can make to improving our agility and resilience as an organisation.

In 2018/19 we will update our information and communications technology strategy to reflect the changes required to deliver the programme. We recognise that effective use of technologies will be essential for success; in particular, we need to make the right technology choices about our IT infrastructure, cloud storage and application hosting, electronic document management and records management systems, telephony, conferencing technologies and shared virtual spaces.

We will map the data and information we need to conduct our functions efficiently and effectively, keeping the burden of regulation to the minimum necessary. We will also improve our digital offerings, updating our website content to make it easier to find the information our users need and streamlining our licence applications, variations and data submissions via the HTA portal.

Our program of work aimed at engaging with licensed establishments told us that Designated Individuals, and those working under a licence, would value opportunities to network, engage and share best practice. In 2018/19 we will launch an online community, aimed at providing those who work with human tissue with a platform to interact with each other and us as the regulator.

We take our responsibility for data protection and information security seriously. In 2018/19 we will implement the necessary controls to ensure compliance with the provisions of the General Data Protection Regulations and the Data Protection Act 2018. We will also continue to strive to meet our obligations under the National Data Guardian’s data security standards and relevant UK Government cyber security frameworks.


Our operational transformation programme is at the heart of the HTA’s Strategy 2018-21. The first year of the strategy will focus on more detailed planning, and as such we anticipate the bulk of capital expenditure relating to the programme to fall into subsequent years. During 2018/19 we require a £100k of funding for capital investment in order to lay the foundations for the future years of the strategy. 

  • System upgrades relating to cyber security risks and packages that are no longer supported by suppliers;
  • Routine refresh of technology and equipment;

The purchase of home office equipment to ensure staff working from home have an appropriate working environment.


The HTA receives funding from two main sources. The majority (75 per cent) comes from licence fees, with the remainder provided as Grant-in-aid from our sponsor, the Department of Health and Social Care. We also receive a small amount of income for undertaking activities on behalf of the devolved administrations and from sub-letting part of our office space.

The licence fee income pays for a range of activities associated with our licensed establishments:

  • evaluating licence applications;
  • making licensing decisions and issuing licences;
  • processing variations to licences;
  • conducting site-visits and following up shortfalls;
  • taking regulatory action;
  • providing advice and guidance to licensed establishments.

Grant-in-aid funds our role in assessing living organ donations and bone marrow / peripheral blood stem cell donation cases and a proportion of our overheads that are not directly associated with our work with licensed establishments 
We place great importance on ensuring that our finances are managed efficiently, effectively and in a way that minimises risk. We have robust financial procedures and policies in place and strict controls in relation to authorisation of expenditure

The high-level budget for 2018/19 is shown below:



Total Staff costs


Other costs


Total Corporate shared service costs


Total Costs


Total Income


Last updated on: 23 May 2018