User Review( votes)
“DMBA has been impacted in a number of ways by COVID-19. Like most organizations, we began working remotely in March of 2020. This caused us to adjust our policies around transportation, travel, meals, and other expenditures. We were able to save money in some areas and then apply that savings to other important initiatives that would have required additional funding from our customers. We hope that this will save our customers money in the long run, because many of them were impacted financially during the pandemic. We administer a health benefits plan for our customers, which saw significant decrease in benefits paid due to a variety of factors, including healthier participants. This allowed us to waive health premiums in January 2021 to help our participants financially.”
The Koret Foundation is committed to strengthening the Bay Area and supporting the Jewish community in the U.S. and Israel through strategic grantmaking to outstanding organizations. Under the leadership of CFO, Marlena Wong, the Koret Foundation finance team moved to the cloud prior to the pandemic, automating and integrating key financial systems. Today, they are even able to work with their auditors remotely.
“Fortunately, we laid the foundation for digital transformation when I started at Koret Foundation about five years ago. We wanted all our systems to talk to one another. To that end, we implemented Sage Intacct cloud accounting software, and integrated it with Nexonia for expense and time reporting, and with our banks. By the time we went under shelter-in-place orders for COVID-19, we were also live with our new grant management system, Fluxx, and started building an API between it and Sage Intacct.
Those grantmaking foundations that had not transitioned to the cloud prior to the pandemic, would have had to go into the office to process checks. During the shutdown, that would have meant delays in critical funding for their grantees. We could process everything online and used ACH to make grant payments twice a month. Thanks to our automation we were able to process over $40 million in grant payments last year, with a total staff of nine.
Our consultants and auditors at Armanino were even able to conduct our audit remotely. They said, ‘You have everything, and Sage Intacct made it so easy for us to audit you.’ This year, we got our draft audit financials ready a month ahead. Challenging times like the pandemic have the potential to either break everyone down or lift everyone up. And I think for us, because we had so many digital systems in place, it lessened the impact on our staff.”
Archdiocese of Cincinnati serves nearly half a million Catholics living in western and southwestern Ohio. The Archdiocese runs schools, hospitals, parishes, social service agencies and other ministries. COVID-19 impacted each and every aspect of the ministry in some way. In the accounting department, being mostly paperless and using cloud-based Sage Intacct made a big difference.
“COVID didn’t actually change non-profit accounting. What COVID did was change the way we go about doing the accounting. COVID also dictated changes to many of the processes that we account for. COVID acted as an accelerant. It forced us to try things we might not have considered before. We were lucky in the fact that we had installed Sage Intacct in 2017. Well before the pandemic hit, we upgraded hardware, software, and processes. Prior to our conversion, EVERYTHING was manual — paper files, paper-based approval systems, paper reports, etc. Using Sage Intacct, we were able to go mostly paperless well before the pandemic.
When the governor shut down the state in March 2020, we took our laptops, scanners, and printers home and didn’t miss a beat. Weekly staff meetings as well as board and committee meetings were maintained using ZOOM. Some of our staff did need to continue coming to the office, but for reduced hours and only to complete tasks that could not be handled remotely. Our audit was done 100% remote. Our auditors never set foot on the premises.
Fundraisers were held as remote events. For years, our parishes had been moving to online giving platforms. In our Archdiocese, we saw virtually every parish adopt this platform in a very short time frame. Those that had only been thinking about it, saw it as a necessity. As a result, overall giving did not decline to the extent we thought it might.”
We hope you’ve enjoyed hearing how these six nonprofit finance leaders managed over the last year and how they plan to lead their organizations forward after the pandemic. Most of our Nonprofit Advisory Council members expressed how important technology and automation have been in helping them pivot quickly during this challenging time, so their organizations can continue delivering on their missions. The digital transformation investment these organizations made in nonprofit accounting technology have already paid off and will continue to position them well for the future. To see why having access to the right data and the right technology benefits nonprofit accounting teams, download our eBook, The Nonprofit Finance Team Survival Guide.