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HEFCE closed at the end of March 2018. The information on this website is historical and is no longer maintained.

Many of HEFCE's functions will be continued by the Office for Students, the new regulator of higher education in England, and Research England, the new council within UK Research and Innovation.

The HEFCE domain - - will continue to function until September 2018. At this point we will close the site entirely and all its information will only be available from the National Web Archive.


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About the Business Impact Target

Under the Enterprise Act 2016 HEFCE and all other statutory regulators have a duty to report against the Government’s Business Impact Target

We are required to assess the direct impacts on higher education providers (‘businesses’) of any new regulatory activity or changes to our current activity, using an approved methodology. We must publish these assessments and report annually from 2017 on the total cost of our regulatory changes. This will enable the Government to know whether it is on course to meet the Business Impact Target.

Reporting against the Business Impact Target

HEFCE must assess the cost of changes to its regulatory provisions and of any new regulation that it introduces. These regulatory activities are known as the qualifying regulatory provisions (QRPs). An impact assessment must be produced for each QRP, independently verified by the Regulatory Policy Committee (RPC) and published.

The total cost of the regulatory change must be reported annually and HEFCE is required to calculate three metrics for the BIT assessment. The metrics are:

  • the business net present value (NPV) which is calculated as the present value of benefits minus the present value of costs
  • the equivalent annual net direct cost to business (EANDCB) which is related to the business NPV but based only on direct costs and benefits to business
  • a BIT score which is a multiple of the EANDCB.

We must also publish a list of our regulatory provisions that remain unchanged in the reporting period. These unchanged provisions are known as non-qualifying regulatory provisions (NQRPs). NQRPs do not need to be costed.

HEFCE's non-qualifying regulatory provisions

Download the NQRP_summary_reporting as PDF (265 KB)


HEFCE’s qualifying regulatory provisions

Table 1: Qualifying regulatory provisions that came into force during the first Business Impact Target reporting period (8 May 2015 to 26 May 2016)

Title and description of measureCommencement dateBIT score (£ millions)RPC reference number

Monitoring the Prevent duty of relevant higher education bodies

Relevant higher education bodies must have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism and provide evidence to support this to HEFCE.

21 August 2015 27.0 RPC-4042(1)-BIS-HEFCE

Gateways: HEFCE activity in connection with the entry of new providers into the higher education sector

Providers that wish to enter the regulatory framework operated by the Department for Education must apply through one of the gateways now administered by HEFCE.

8 May 2015 9.0 RPC-3860(1)-DfE

Download QRP Prevent duty monitoring 

Download the Monitoring_Prevent_duty as PDF (309 KB)

Download QRP Gateways

Download the Gateways as PDF (214 KB)

Table 2: Qualifying regulatory provisions that came into force during the second and final Business Impact Target reporting period (27 May 2016 to 8 June 2017)

Title and description of measureCommencement dateBIT score (£ millions)RPC reference number

Higher education quality assessment

HEFCE-funded providers are required to participate in the new approach to quality assessment, which replaces the four or six-yearly Higher Education Review process.

1 August 2016 23.5 RPC-3657(1)-BIS-HEFCE

Student information

Changes to the data collection underpinning the Unistats website require higher education providers to present information on course structure, delivery and costs on their own websites rather than on Unistats. Alternative providers are also now required to return student data to the Higher Education Statistics Agency and to take part in the National Student Survey, Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education survey and Key Information Set data collection.

6 March 2017 9.0 RPC-3951(1)-BIS-HEFCE

HEFCE's policy on the Business Impact Target

Download the BIT_policy_statement as PDF (184 KB)


Contact information

For queries please contact


Page last updated 29 September 2017