Is the best cure for poor financial management having the floor drop out from under you?
The BBC would certainly be understood if it took that position. The broadcaster, still under investigation for the Jimmy Savile sexual abuse scandal, finally has seen a ray of sunshine, as Britain's National Audit Office says the company has improves its money management and even saved money.
However, it still thinks the BBC could strengthen its financial reporting to ensure that its spending matches up with its editorial and strategic priorities.
The National Audit Office published its report this morning. Its function is to analyze public bodies and their use of finances, reporting the results back to the U.K. parliament. But who watches the watchmen?
British households contribute to the BBC's finances via the license fee they are charged as taxpayers. People were furious last week when it was revealed that outgoing BBC director general George Entwistle would receive $715,000 following his resignation after three-months on the job. The National Audit Office's report did not cover that.
"The BBC has strengthened its approach to financial management, which has helped it meet savings targets," said Amyas Morse, head of the National Audit Office. "(Monitoring changes) will put it in a better position to decide how best it uses its shrinking resource[s] in a way that offers value for money for the license fee payer and still delivers the performance viewers and listeners expect."