• Excerpts from the "Nonprofit Finance Automation" Webinar chat.

    Posted by Jason on March 5, 2024 at 12:25 pm

    The following are selections from the chat from the webinar “A Tactical Approach to the Automation of Your Nonprofit Finance Function,” hosted by the Nonprofit Financial Commons on February 27, 2024. Below, you’ll find our forum members working out solutions to problems they had and recommending tools to others. But this conversation’s not done! If you can answer some of the unanswered questions, or have recommendations or queries of your own, join in and keep the thread going.

    Experience with Expensify and Integrations

    Gabe: Would be curious if anyone has experience with Expensify and/or experience integrating Xero and Salesforce.

    Siobhán: Gabe, we’ve been using Expensify for a few months. It’s been a great tool, pretty intuitive and a big time-saver (previously using spreadsheets).

    Trish: In response to query re: Expensify: Bill recently purchased Divvy – a great option for Credit Card reporting & employee expense reports.

    Gabe: Thanks @Siobhán! And @Trish.

    Katie: I will second Divvy/BILL over Expensify… fewer data errors related to sync issues or manual entry error by employees.

    Gabe: Great, thanks @Katie.

    Lisa: I like Ramp & Bill.com. Ramp has great options & is basically free. Use Bill.com for the A/P side.

    Gabe: Thanks @Lisa.

    Katie Steele: I believe Ramp and Divvy are very similar, but credit limits may vary.

    Credit Card Platform for Chase?

    Jessica: Credit card platform that will work with my existing Chase account? I don’t want to switch bank to Ramp or Divvy to get the workflow.

    Katie: Jessica, platforms like Tallie or Expensify should work.

    Jennifer: @Jessica, you should be able to use Ramp and Divvy regardless of your banking, they are just the platform.

    Katie: Ramp and Divvy are both the expense tracking platform and the credit card issuer. Things like Tallie and Expensify just pull in credit card transactions from other credit card issuers.

    Quickbooks Online and TechSoup

    Hafoc: Does anyone know a QuickBooks Online option that is more focused on nonprofits?

    Tabetha: There is a QuickBooks Nonprofit edition.

    Maria: We just set up our QBO to work best for us as a nonprofit. What options are you looking for?

    Hafoc: Yes, I was wondering if there was something better? It’s good, but the online version is bothersome.

    Jaclyn: A fund accounting software is going to be better than QBO (like Blackbaud, Sage Intacct, etc.), but unfortunately they are WAY more expensive.

    Andrea: We use the QuickBooks desktop version.

    Hafoc: Andrea, Desktop was great! Sadly, my ED wanted to go online. I was spoiled with the desktop version.

    Cheryl: QuickBooks Online for Nonprofits is really Plus or Advanced with the nonprofit terminology set up for you. There are other options, but as @Jaclyn said, they are either very advanced/expensive or so simplistic you may outgrow it quickly.

    Cheryl: If you’re a nonprofit eligible for TechSoup membership, you can get QBO Plus for $75/year. If you’re not working with TechSoup, you are missing out on amazing software/hardware savings.

    Hafoc: Thanks Jaclyn. I’ll check those out. QBs

    Jennifer: +1 for TechSoup!

    Maria Ta: ++ on techSoup

    Hafoc: ***** TechSoup!

    Holly: Agree – TechSoup. We’ve been on QB Desktop but they are phasing out – will move to QBO via TechSoup.

    Andrea: QB Desktop is phasing out?! Oh no!

    Cheryl: @Jessica — that’s something TechSoup should know! I don’t see an accessibility button on their site, either.

    Robyn: Yes, Eventually QB Desktop will go away.

    Mark Hager: Welcome everyone! I’m one of the NFC moderators, and I’ll join webinar at two points to ask panelists a few questions. Bring any of your reactions or queries here.

    Dana Britto: Hi Everyone! Like Ruth mentioned, I’m Dana and I work alongside Mark as a moderator. Please keep your questions coming!

    Jessica Stelzer: How to choose platforms? I find many and feel like I’m picking at random. RE: credit card & expense management, project & task management, client comms & dialoging on specific transactions (need doc, need coding, what is this, etc.) Importing bank transactions, not just one by one in the bank feed.

    Budget Planning

    Cynthia: Can Bill.com or Divvy be used as budget planning software?

    Katie: Cynthia… Divvy does have budget monitoring features, but it wouldn’t be where you build your whole budget. It would be where you see how you’re doing on spending against certain budget lines.

    Budget Forecasting/Scenario Automation

    Christopher: Could you plz share reasonable budget forecasting scenario automation tool/app/software?

    Tee: Yes Christopher

    July: I recommend budget software Martus

    Stacie: Thanks for the Martus recommendation. Never heard of it. Looking now and its focus on nonprofit budgeting has me intrigued.

    Amazon Business

    Christopher: plz what vendors allow individual staff accounts…amazon I hope

    Nancy: Amazon business prime

    Rita Mae: You mean to import Amazon transactions? That would be so helpful.

    Nancy: For staff to be set up with approvals and ordering their own

    Christopher: I mean to order not import

    Rita Mae: Our Amazon purchases import from the credit card right now. Is Amazon business a separate integration?

    Alexa: Amazon business can be auto imported into QBO.

    Alexa: Amazon business can import the full invoice into QBO and then it will match to the payment. It is different from a regular Amazon account.

    Bill.com and Training

    ERICA: Does bill.com give training on how to implement or is it good to get a consultant to help?

    Fay: Yes, Bill.com have technical support always there to answer questions you have. In addition, they provide training to finance staff and help on drafting instruction for the approvers on how to review and approve bills.

    Emma: @erica We started using BILL.com this year and used a consultant to get us setup, but otherwise I’ve used their help site to troubleshoot and learn. It’s not the best, but it is intuitive enough that it’s doable.

    The Quickbooks for Nonprofits Facebook Group

    Gabe: Even with our accounting platform, the actual budget projecting (on a program level, staff line items and OTPS categories) is done in spreadsheets. Any recs? And we’ve looked into Sage but it seemed quite expensive.

    Tanya: @Gabe, if anyone has them please send them my way too….manage 15ish federal, state and local grants each fiscal year and do it all via spreadsheet (and then put into the spreadsheet the grantor sends us) and would love to have something to budget and do actuals

    Gabe: @Tanya lol noted!

    Jessica: @Tanya have you joined FB group QuickBooks for Nonprofits? Wide range of orgs, and lots of useful guidance on grant management. Especially Megan Genest Tarnow’s methodology. You have Quite A Lot tho!

    Jaclyn: @gabe some folks have cited budgyt and martus earlier in the chat. there are a bunch on the market (they’re called FP&A software solutions). I haven’t tried any yet, but I started to research them for the coming budget year

    Alexa: Second this suggestion: Megan and QB for Nonprofits on Facebook is a fantastic resource.

    Assorted Recommendations

    Jackie: We use Foundant’s CommunitySuite for the easy fund accounting and CRM pieces, but it doesn’t do payroll (just a JE at the end) and is quite expensive.

    Janice: We use araize.com. Very cost effective and checks off all those automation features.

    July: We did our AP automation with airbase.com, best of its kind.

    Jeff Ganung: Relatively inexpensive (compared to the big boys!) budget tool — budgyt.com

    July: Soon will be migrating from NetSuite to Sage intact to integrate ADP, Martus budget and other tools for full automation.

    Unanswered Queries

    Rebecca: What systems do you use for purchasing/procurement approval and what financial database are you using to integrate?

    Wing: Curious if anyone has gone through implementing AR and connections to other platforms such as BILL, Stripe, and Salesforce

    Federica: What do you all think of a Software Platform like Rippling?

    Jessica: Name some Budget Process Automation tools please?

    Katherine: Most of our work is international – does anyone know how Expensify or other software is with processing receipts in other languages?

    July: Has anyone done Procurement automation that comply with Gov funding?

    Siobhán: Does anyone have experience using the approval workflow and bill pay within QBO? I believe it used to be through a third party vendor and recently became an internal function.

    Michele: Is there an automation process/software that will assist for cost allocations?

    Fay: Can anyone share experience on using PO system?

    Nancy: What software was the dashboard from?

    Tanya: Can we get a webinar that discusses the options available for automation like Bill.com, QB desktop versus QBO (since desktop will be going away), other systems that other have mentioned so that we can see how many systems are needed, what type of services they offer, looking into it alone gets confusing

    Parting Remarks

    Jessica: whoo lord struggling with leadership’s “unclear vision”! and I don’t mean yellow and white!

    Jessica: i cant fix leadership’s unclear vision ;-(

    Nancy: @Jessica – I think we may need that louder in the back. Asking for a friend….

    Robyn: Oh, I feel that.

    Jessica: I’m spending a lot of time researching right now. And I’m concerned that no matter how much I prep, there will be things we only find after we implement, and folks will be upset and blame me.

    Fay: I feel you Jessica. but nothing is perfect and it can fit all needs. Just think about what is “Must Have” (learned this today) as priority.

    Jessica: Yes! her list came right after i said that and it is useful 🙂

    Fay Li: I struggle a lot too at my organization every time when I want to launch new system.

    Jason replied 1 month, 1 week ago 1 Member · 0 Replies
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