Budgeting specialist with over with 20 years experience helping all types of organizations with budgeting and forecasting, strategic planning and management reporting challenges.
Deep expertise in budgeting and planning for nonprofit organizations, delivering projects across international and cultural boundaries.
For large nonprofits that give out grants, puts in place reporting systems to ensure that funds are aligned with strategic objectives and can be accurately measured and assessed.
Founder of Rapid Performance with operations in the U.S. and Africa, implementing enterprise performance management (EPM) solutions for some of the largest nonprofits in the U.S., including Catholic Relief Services, The Red Cross and Lutheran World Relief.
All nonprofits and foundations have the following key requirements:
Creation of internal budgets, such as programs, grants personnel, capital.
Reporting on their performance, such as statements of activities, cash flow, objectives.
Foundations and large NGOs often have an additional requirement, which is making sure that the recipients of their grants can accurately account for how monies are spent and also measure if their objectives are being met.
But too often organizations rely on relatively unsophisticated methodologies and software for budgeting, reporting, and performance measurement. For example:
Budgeting and forecasting fails to take into account complicated factors in order to predict the various scenarios that could be lurking around the bend.
Organizations rely on Microsoft Excel for all of their financial planning and reporting, when often their processes are far more complicated than Excel can handle.
Organizations fail to recognize that when it comes to measuring success, the most important and relevant data lie in outcome metrics, not operational metrics.
Organizations are daunted by the prospect of performance-based budgeting, which ascertain the true costs and can best demonstrate program effectiveness.
But by embracing more sophisticated strategies for budgeting and reporting, including implementing the right software, organizations can get a far better handle on how they are doing and where they should be going. They can increase their efficiency and effectiveness, reduce their costs, and validate their missions.
It's crucial to recognize the connection between sound budgeting and reporting methods and fundraising -– donors obviously like seeing that their funds are well-spent, and they'll be more likely to give if they can easily gauge the impact of their donation. Overall, the trend toward greater accountability regarding how funds are spent makes becoming more savvy about budgeting and reporting imperative.
Finally, if you're a grant-giving organization, when you implement good budgeting and performance measurement practices, you can pass along and share your new standards and even your software with your grantees, which will often dramatically improve their effectiveness.