Xero Offers Helping Hand to Lift Not-for-profit organisations to the Cloud
Leading Online Accounting Solution Offers Discounted Services to NFPs
Milton Keynes, UK, August 28, 2012 – Xero, a provider of online accounting software, today pledged its commitment to help organisations that help others. Xero is offering a 25% discount on its Business Edition accounting software through xero.com to better serve not-for-profits (NFPs) and help them stay fiscally organised. More details at http://www.xero.com/nfp.
Xero, which serves customers in over 100 countries across the globe, recently reached out to a global panel of non-profits and their accounting counterparts to learn more about the business issues that impact them the most and how cloud accounting and Xero can help. Xero found the number one problem NFPs and their financial advisors face is the management (or mismanagement) of cash flow, often as a result of lack of financial capability.
Pancreatic Cancer Action is a UK charity using Xero. Said Ali Stunt, Founder & Chief Executive, “We’ve put all of our system on to the cloud because we believe it is the way to go, in terms of saving money and being more flexible and efficient. So moving to cloud-based online accounting was a logical progression, particularly because we can expand our use of Xero as we grow: there will be no need to invest in other accounting systems.”
“We’ve only been using Xero a few months, but already it is helping us to manage our finances more efficiently. We can send invoices direct from Xero, we are setting up bank reconciliations and the dashboard means we can see our financial situation at a glance, which will help us to run an even tighter ship than we do already. I can automatically generate reports without spending hours analysing our figures. As someone who is not an accounting expert, I’ve found Xero very intuitive to use: we were up and running with Xero very rapidly. It means we can focus on what is really important – raising awareness of pancreatic cancer – rather than operating our accounting package.”
Xero has compiled the following tips based on the series of questions they put forth to NFPs and their accounting professionals on how to manage their finances.
Standardise your NFP’s reporting system
As most non-profit staff and volunteers likely will not have a background in accounting it is important to keep and use financial reports and systems that can be understood by all. Implement a standardized format that is easy to read. Keep reporting consistent over time so that anyone from a volunteer to a board member can pick up where the last person left off.
Be transparent with your board
Allow board members and senior managers full visibility into the numbers and educate them about how to read non-profit financial reports. NFPs have a responsibility to inform their principals about their fundraising methods, how much is being raised, how it’s spent and what is owed.
Diligence is critical for NFPs
It is essential to keep good records no matter how small or large your organisation, or how minor or major the amount of money. NFPs cannot afford to be sloppy or inaccurate with financial records. Employ an easy-to-use, easy-to-read recordkeeping system to make record keeping more manageable.
Do your mission a favour, and budget for administration
Put together a strategic plan, budget and monitor against it. Allocate for costs that might not appear to be directly associated with your ‘mission’, including financial administration, marketing and IT. Set aside a portion of funds to build in as a reserve from the beginning.
Online accounting was made for non-profits
NFPs have multiple projects being managed and executed simultaneously by many different people (typically volunteers). The cloud makes it possible for users to submit expenses, track spending and run reports anytime, anywhere. The cloud also makes it easy for accounting professionals working offsite to provide timely and effective council for non-profits.
“We know staff members at non-profits may not be experienced accountants as they wear many different hats to keep admin costs down,” said Gary Turner, Managing Director of Xero, “Xero makes it easy for anyone to get a handle on their cash and financials so they can focus on their cause, not their books.”
To learn more about how Xero can directly help NFPs read our blog post:
Xero.com is a beautiful, easy to use online accounting software for small businesses and their advisors. The company has over 100,000 paying customers and 240,000 users in more than 100 countries around the world. Xero’s UK team is based in Milton Keynes