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 sixty to ninety days and was in a very 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.