Please read the full application guidance for Major partner museums 2015-18 for more information on the following points.

Strategic framework

On 30 October 2013 we published our refreshed strategy, Great art and culture for everyone. We strongly recommend all applicants read this document, as applications will be assessed in relation to the mission and goals in our strategy, so it is very important that you think how your organisation relates to this strategy and what it will do to advance our mission and goals. More information can be found in the Major partner museums 2015-18 application guidance.

We strongly advise that all applicants to the Major partner museums programme with a focus on Goal 5 of our strategic framework (arts and cultural provision for children and young people) also read our Arts Award and Artsmark briefing note. This document gives an introduction to the programmes, explains how we expect National portfolio organisations to support both programmes and signposts to places for further information. You can download the document to the right of this page.

Fair pay, equality and diversity

Arts Council England is committed to ensuring proper and fair payment those who work in the cultural sector. We require organisations receiving funding from Arts Council England to ensure that salaries, fees and subsistence arrangements are as good as or better than those agreed by any relevant trade unions and employers’ associations.

We also observe the public sector Equality Duty 2011 and the protected characteristics as defined in the Equality Act 2010. We are also committed to promoting equality across differing socio-economic groups. Applicants for Major museum partner status that proceed successfully to the stage where a funding agreement is negotiated will be expected to submit a three-year equality action plan at the same time as they submit their three-year business plan.

We expect that applicants will not only observe minimum legal standards but will demonstrate a willingness to set high standards of practice. In particular, we wish to see how applicants’ obligation to promote organisational equality is complemented by a commitment to diversity in their work.

More on these points can be found in the Major partner museums 2015-18 application guidance.

Organisational resilience

All successful applicants will be expected to demonstrate their resilience. Resilience is the vision and capacity of organisations to anticipate and adapt to economic, environmental and social change by seizing opportunities, identifying and mitigating risks, and deploying resources effectively in order to continue delivering quality work in line with their mission.

During the funding agreement negotiating stage, which will take place between July 2014 and February 2015, applicants who have successfully progressed to a funding offer will have to provide a clear business plan setting out how the organisation will strengthen its resilience. We will also require clear plans for equality and environmental sustainability. You can find out more about our environmental programme here.

In the current economic climate we are particularly keen to improve the resilience of Major partner museums. The best applications will show their capacity for a demonstrable improvement in resilience between 2015 and 2018.

Working with a relationship manager

Successful applicants will be expected to work within Arts Council England’s relationship management framework and fulfil specific monitoring and data reporting requirements so that we can track the progress of our investment programmes and strategies, and show stakeholders the value of what we do.

You can find out about our existing relationship management framework here, however it is worth noting this will be refreshed for the 2015-18 period.