What makes a successful CIF funding application?

Updated for 2021/22 Outcomes.

Eddisons have analysed the Government data to identify the trends in successful CIF applications.
See the locations, stages of education and even the words used in successful bids.

We analysed the government’s CIF Outcomes data to see what we could learn about the most successful CIF funding applications.

Eddisons has worked on Condition Improvement Funding with schools, academies and sixth-form colleges across the UK. We’re dedicated to helping schools find the best way possible to secure funding for their capital projects. With this in mind, we’ve analysed the CIF outcomes data to identify the trends in successful applications. Find out more about our CIF services >

We found three key trends: 1) Local education authority, with some authorities securing ten times more projects than average. 2) Level of Education; showing that Primary schools make up more than half of all successful applications. 3) Types of work, which also showed us other words that commonly occurred.

Local Education Authorities

Which LEAs have the most successful CIF bids?

We wanted to know if the local area, or more specifically the Education Authority had an impact on CIF applications. We know there probably too many factors to calculate a precise figure; it would need to take into consideration population density, number of institutions, other sources of funding and historic centralised and decentralised funding; so we’ve used some simple metrics to highlight trends in the data.  Most notably we can see that just 3% of local authorities make up almost 15% of all successful projects. The top performing authority (Maidenhead) has more than double the number of successful bids than the average LEA.

Which LEAs have the most successful CIF bids

The 20 LEAs with the most successful CIF Applications

South Leicestershire Local Education Authority tops the table with 18 successful applications for Condition Improvement Funding.

LEAs with the most successful bids Projects
Compared to average
Maidenhead 15 221%
Camborne and Redruth 14 206%
West Worcestershire 11 162%
Plymouth, Moor View 11 162%
North West Leicestershire 11 162%
Hornchurch and Upminster 11 162%
Chesham and Amersham 11 162%
Bromley and Chislehurst 11 162%
Ashton-under-Lyne 11 162%
West Ham 10 147%
Gainsborough 10 147%
Bedford 10 147%
Ashford 10 147%
Stratford-on-Avon 9 132%
Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport 9 132%
North Cornwall 9 132%
Macclesfield 9 132%
Leicester South 9 132%
Ipswich 9 132%
Harlow 9 132%

Primary, Secondary or Sixth Form

Which stage of education has the most successful CIF bids?

We know that secondary schools tend to be larger builders with a bigger cohort and so we might expect to see those buildings need more maintenance. Every school is different, so it’s hard to say who needs more funding but we can see very clearly who gets more funding. Primary is still getting more than half, but has dropped by a 2%. Some of that has gone to sixth form colleges which have increase from 1% of successful applications to 2%. 

Successful CIF applications categorised by educational stage.

Primary Education accounted for more than 57% of successful Condition Improvement Funding applications. A distant second was Secondary education at 32%.

Phase of Education No. of Projects Percentage of all projects
SFC 24 2%
Secondary 558 38%
Primary 805 55%
Not applicable 74 5%
All-through 15 1%
Grand Total 1476 100%

Types of Work

What type of works are the most commonly approved CIF applications?

The heart of condition improvement is warm, dry and safe; so we know we’re going to see lots of mentions of projects like heating, roofs, windows and fencing.  However, we are surveyors at heart, so we measure rather than guess. This has not only shown the types of projects but also the types of words people use.

The words most likely to appear in a successful CIF application

We used software to search for the most commonly used words in successful application titles. We included connected words so ‘Roof’ also includes ‘Roofs’ and ‘Roofing’.  This highlighted the most popular types of work but it also showed with adjectives came top.  Whilst ‘Urgent’ and ‘Safety’ appeared in the top five, ‘Critical’ didn’t make it into the top twenty.

Word Word Count Percentage of Bids
Roof 348 24%
Fire 299 20%
Safety 227 15%
Urgent 218 15%
Heat 169 11%
Boiler 147 10%
Safeguard 129 9%
Compliance 96 7%
Electric 77 5%
Refurbishment 76 5%
Build 59 4%
Alarm 53 4%
Repair 44 3%
Windows 43 3%
Security 41 3%
Essential 32 2%
Light 32 2%
Asbestos 28 2%
Toilet 15 1%
Kitchen 13 1%
Drainage 12 1%
Critical 12 1%

We can help with your CIF application

We offer no-fee support to all schools in England. Ask for our no obligation advice on successful CIF applications.

We offer free CIF application advice, we write bids free of charge and also offer current condition surveys.

If you need help with your condition improvement funding or have some questions about our service, tell us a little about your application and we’ll get back to you shortly.

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