Finance for Good: Four Non-Profits Transforming the Finance Function
Jun 15, 2022, 7:25:00 AM
Can Finance make the world a better place?
When most people think about world-changing activities, they likely don’t think of FP&A, budgeting, or forecasting. But Finance leaders know that all the above can be powerful tools for improving business outcomes. And in non-profits, where every penny counts, Finance can be a powerful driver for success.
Prophix is proud to support non-profit Finance teams in helping their organizations change the world. From fighting hunger to protecting the environment, they’re improving people’s lives through the power of data-driven, forward-looking Finance.
Here are four inspiring stories from non-profit Finance leaders.
Feeding America: Keeping Donors Informed & Guiding the Business
oversees a network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries, helping to fight hunger in the United States. They estimate that more than 42 million people may face food insecurity right now, including 13 million children.
“We use Prophix to identify where donor dollars go,” says Tim McCarthy, Finance Manager at Feeding America. The team can even show donors how their donations led to a specific number of meals served or pounds of food delivered.
This transparency and accountability make donors feel more comfortable not only with their own donations, but also with recommending the organization to others.
The Finance team at Feeding America also uses Prophix for scenario planning to identify opportunities, obtain a higher ROI for fundraising, and discern how best to invest funds.
Ultimately, the Finance team is an indispensable part of helping Feeding America fight hunger. David Raso, Senior Financial Analyst, brings it home: “At the end of the day, my analysis can help feed more people.”
Silver Chain: Faster, Smarter Budgeting and Analysis
is an in-home provider for senior citizens with over 100 years of experience, currently serving over 100,000 people. The organization provides 2 million hours of care every year.
The Finance team at Silver Chain turned to Prophix to revitalize their budgeting process. Before their transformation, they relied on spreadsheets and exports from a wide variety of reporting tools. The team would take multiple days at the end of every month to compile the data into an Excel-based report. The process was not only inefficient, but it also kept the team from doing more analytical, predictive work.
With a CPM solution in place, the team can now produce reports in minutes rather than days. Says Clinton Bright, Finance Project Specialist: “Prophix frees up the time for the accountants to analyze the results, as opposed to spending as much time as they were just putting the numbers together.”
The Wilderness Society: Saving Hundreds of Hours in Staff Time
Founded in 1935, the Wilderness Society
is a conservation organization working to protect the wilderness and inspire advocacy. They have been able to permanently protect over 100 million acres of wilderness, as well as promote better management of America’s shared natural lands.
The organization’s largest expense is the salary budget. It’s essential to their operations to have a reliable and accurate forecast for labor, as well as the ability to allocate labor funds to specific projects.
With Prophix, the Wilderness Society’s Finance team can create a centralized budget more efficiently, monitor the budget against actual expenses, and re-forecast in the middle of the year to ensure accuracy.
The Finance team is using their time saved to make data more searchable and available for the organization’s leaders. They can now quickly and automatically compile a monthly digest that contains all the data the executive suite needs, without having to search for the most relevant numbers.
American Library Association: Detailed Planning and Forecasting
In 1876, the United States of America celebrated its 100th birthday — and the American Library Association (ALA) came together for the first time. This non-profit organization is on a mission to, “provide leadership for the development, promotion and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.”
To pursue that mission, the ALA’s Finance team needed to streamline and automate its budgeting and forecasting processes. A proliferation of spreadsheets led to problems with version control, with disparities in the numbers between departments.
For their digital transformation, the Finance team sought to create a single version of the truth, one set of numbers that could guide the entire organization. They adopted Prophix to consolidate data and automate the annual budget process. Once the solution was in place, they were able to adopt a more detailed mid-year reporting and forecasting process as well.
“It’s enabled us to do a more organized and detailed projection process at the midpoint of the fiscal year,” says Brad Geene, Director of Budget and Planning. “Before, it was much more informal, with the executive team saying ‘well, how’s it going?’ Now we’re making a projection template showing them the 6-month forecast.”
Finance Is Vital for Non-Profit Businesses
Non-profit organizations must be just as financially savvy as their for-profit counterparts. Moreso, in fact — every dollar spent on administrative overhead is one fewer dollar that is doing good in the world.
The Finance teams we’ve highlighted have each helped their organizations make the best use of donor money, ensuring more of it goes to the people who need it most.
Prophix is proud to partner with these organizations that help do good through the Finance function. Want to learn more? Watch a demo video now