A not-for-profit organization was extremely mission based and, as can be typical, had the financial responsibilities in the hands of a person who wore several other hats. Reporting to the Board of Trustees and other interested parties was often delayed 60-90 days and was in a rigid format that was not understood by the users. Divisions of the organization were keeping some of their own financial records, some of which were manual systems. The Board suspected that one of their programs was losing a substantial amount of money each year but the reporting was not in place to verify this hunch.
The person responsible for the finances had been with the organization for a long time. She had lots of institutional knowledge but none of it was documented, and she was contemplating retirement. There had been no outside look at the organization’s finances for almost twenty years. The Executive Director of the organization had a strong mission focus and was neither interested in, nor qualified to properly train and manage an internal financial position.
- Have an outside set of eyes review the finances during the personnel transition.
- Upgrade and integrate the various internal systems
- Establish work flow processes to allow for substantial improvement in the timing of reporting.
- Implement a long term, sustainable solution for their personnel transition
- Performed a comprehensive review of internal financial controls; presented recommendations to the Board and assisted in their implementation.
- Performed an audit of the organizations’ financial statements.
- Collaborated with a board committee to evaluate industry specific software solutions.
- Directed the implementation of an integrated, cloud based software solution.
- Took responsibility for the entire accounting function through an outsourcing arrangement.
The Board and membership of the organization has the peace of mind that their financial reports accurately reflect the true picture. Appropriate controls have been implemented. The Board and Committees now have financial reports in their hands by the 10th of the following month rather than three months later. The cloud based software solution allows many reports to be real time.
The outsourcing arrangement was done at net reduction in cost. This arrangement also allowed for additional segregation of duties which otherwise would not have been possible. In addition, the arrangement eliminates the need for the organization to be involved with training and supervision.