With new nonprofit financial software and specialized help from AcctTwo, the accounting team at Boys & Girls Club of Greater Dallas have automated complex scholarship tracking, a simplified their chart of accounts, and now have the insights and visual dashboards they need to demonstrate the impact and financial health of their organization.
Legacy System Was 30 Years Old
When Rivas arrived at BGCD, she and Anita Goble, an accountant who’d been with the organization for about 3 years, both realized there were several potential improvements they could make with more modern nonprofit technology and by moving to a modern cloud-based system.
The organization was running its finances on an older legacy version of Blackbaud’s Financial Edge platform. The system had seen little change or improvement in more than 30 years. Rivas also saw process and internal controls improvements she could implement alongside the new accounting system.
- 30-plus-year-old accounting system with performance issues and limited access
- Forced to manage Fixed Assets and Bank Reconciliation processes outside the accounting system in Excel
- Unwieldy Chart of Accounts to accommodate multiple locations, grants, scholarships, and other dimensions
- Lack of integration with other systems
Before partnering with AcctTwo, BGCD was conducting Bank Reconciliations outside of the accounting system in Excel. This was time consuming and error prone. And, because the organization had established strong segregation of duties, if an error was made on the AP side, the AR resource was forced to resolve those issues via email and phone calls, a tedious process. That workflow is now a breeze, saving BGCD two hours per month.
Fixed Asset management was another process that had to be managed in Excel. BGCD had to rely on their auditors to manage the process and their depreciation schedules. AcctTwo recommended AssetEdge, a marketplace solution, to bring that process into Sage Intacct, saving BGCD money each year on their audit.
ACH functionality was not yet set up because of the complexity involved in managing that through the legacy system. AcctTwo helped make that setup simple - a big win for Rivas’ team.
Another area of improvement seen with their new nonprofit management software has been around setting up approvals in the system. Sage Intacct’s approval functionality has increased communication and interaction between various approvers and has allowed BGCD’s AP resource more flexibility in getting her work done. Rather than having to catch up on a huge backlog whenever she’s in the office, she can process invoices anytime and from anywhere.
All in all, Rivas and her team estimate more than 50 hours per month of time saved from the elimination of duplicated effort, the reduction in paper-based filing and processes, with better and more accurate reporting with no required Excel manipulation.
“We all see the light at the end of tunnel,” she says. “We all see more reasonable working hours coming soon. Anita’s office is piled high with paper – just getting rid of all the paper processes and reducing the necessary filing is a huge thing for us.”
COVID Makes Finance Transformation Go from optional to Urgent
Updating their accounting and finance technology was part of a larger organizational initiative at BGCD to modernize their systems. Other aspects of that initiative include moving to a new payroll system, migrating to Microsoft Office 365, and starting the process of architecting a new club attendance management system on the Salesforce platform. The effects of the COVID pandemic only increased the urgency and timeline of these initiatives.
“Our Operations Director recently commented to me that because of COVID we’ve compressed five years of technology advancement into a single year’s timeframe,” says Rivas.
A Partner with Industry Experience Was Key
Stephen Strack, a Solution Architect at AcctTwo and BGCD's project lead, was instrumental in gathering the organization’s biggest pain points, making best practice recommendations, and mapping the solutions into the new accounting system.
“We can’t say enough good things about our experience with Stephen,” says Rivas. “Stephen would often answer our questions by providing best practices which we found very helpful.”
Rivas explained that when it comes to implementing nonprofit technology solutions, she finds industry expertise and an understanding of nonprofits to be extremely important. “The folks at AcctTwo really are nonprofit finance experts. That’s clear to me from going through this process with them as a guide.”
- Dimensional accounting streamlines chart of accounts and allows for better data capture
- Improved processes/Fewer processes in Excel
- Ability to implement ACH functionality
- Better anytime, anywhere access to the system
- Integration with donor system
Read more in the full case study.