Dashboard reports help analyze results

| Audit and Accounting

By Chris Mennel, CPA & Tyler Hayes     Data, data, data!  Nonprofits and for-profits alike have more data than ever to track, understand and utilize in carrying out their goals.  It’s easy to quickly become overwhelmed. To help get the process started, consider creating dashboards. Dashboards are short (normally one page) graphical representations of data that can provide the key measurements to make informed decisions. They can show program results, financial results, or any other Read more [...]

Building an effective audit committee

| Audit and Accounting

By Sarah Gregory & Chris Mennel     If your nonprofit has an external audit, a dedicated audit committee can promote better financial reporting, lead to fewer fraud incidents, and help create a smoother audit process. For example, take the recent headlines regarding the Key Worldwide Foundation. It served as a front for the bribery scandal admitting children of wealthy parents into elite universities. Appropriate oversight might have identified the fraudulent activity early on, rather than Read more [...]

How can I make our 401(k) audit run smoothly?

| Audit and Accounting, Business Miscellaneous

Part 2 of 3 in the “How to survive a 401(k) audit” series By Justin Schwartz, CPA   Preparing for a defined benefit or profit sharing plan audit may seem like a daunting task; however, understanding which key areas the auditor may be testing should help put your mind at ease.  Auditors typically focus on three main areas:  participant data, employee/employer contributions and withdrawals from the plan.  We will focus on participant data and employee/employer contributions below. Auditors Read more [...]

Why must our 401(k) be audited?

| Audit and Accounting, Business Miscellaneous

Part 1 of 3 in the “How to survive a 401(k) audit” series By Evan Rauch, CPA     For generations, defined benefit pension plans were the retirement plan standard for just about every employer. However, these pensions became financially draining for employers as the life expectancy of their retired employees increased, making way for a new type of retirement plan – the defined contribution plan or a profit sharing plan.  Nearly 40 years later, defined contribution plans have become the Read more [...]

Nonprofit functional expense reporting and how to make sure it’s accurate

| Audit and Accounting, Business Miscellaneous

By Natalie Hopkins and Chris Mennel     One of the fun parts about offering auditing and accounting services to various nonprofits (that’s right, we used fun and auditing in the same sentence #accountingnerd), is getting to see the operations of different types of organizations.  There are some amazing missions, people and passions in the nonprofit community.   While every organization is different, there are certain parallels in the composition of an organization’s audited financial statement, Read more [...]

Make Your Audit Count

| Audit and Accounting

By Natalie Hopkins      Governance, Fraud, Conflicts of Interest and 990 Reviews are among the hot topics that have circled the not-for-profit world the last couple of years.  Finance committees, tax preparers, and boards of directors can all provide critical information related to these areas and aim to help an Organization achieve the many goals it has surrounding fiscal responsibility. However, the annual independent audit process can also be a crucial benchmark Organizations use to measure Read more [...]

Accounting for Your Volunteers, Literally!

| Audit and Accounting

By Tyler Kleinschmidt     Not-for-profit entities rely heavily on volunteers and a variety of contributed goods and services to fulfill their mission. The Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”), which sets the rules regarding accounting and financial reporting, outlines criteria that govern whether or not a contributed service should be recognized in the financial statements.  However, there is still debate as to whether these guidelines allow for the most accurate reflection of the Read more [...]

Mid-Year Check Up

| Audit and Accounting

By Natalie Hopkins    Many of our clients are currently closing out their fiscal year-end financial records and keeping up with the many to-dos that go along with that strenuous process. However, we have many nonprofit clients who are hitting their halfway mark of their fiscal year and are ready for a mid-year checkup. Finance Committees should be evaluating cash flows and what is anticipated during the second half of the year to understand shortcomings and how to invest additional cash that Read more [...]

Accounting & Reporting Standards for Privately-Held Businesses – the FASB Needs to Step Aside….

| Audit and Accounting

By Mike Alerding     In 42 years of public accounting, I have fought the “Public vs Non-Public” battle of accounting and disclosure principles to no avail.  The FASB continually and consistently has stuck to its guns that “GAAP is GAAP” like not unlike the “Right is Right” concept.  However, regardless as to what those at the FASB believe, when it comes to reporting for closely-held businesses, Right is not always GAAP and certainly GAAP is not always RIGHT. In early June 2013, Read more [...]