Of the Department's seven Executive agencies, four are designated as Trading Funds and are therefore funded primarily through fees. For the remaining agencies, Department officials provide a sponsorship role in reviewing and challenging agency plans in light of the funding available to the Department and to adjust the plans where necessary.
Each of the Department’s Executive agencies then completes a Business Plan that is published before the commencement of each financial year setting out the direction for the agency’s activities and the resources required to deliver them. Department officials also review these Business Plans to ensure that they include the Department’s policy requirements and to align the plans with delivery of the Department’s own objectives. The plans are then subject to agreement with Ministers.