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The SARS-CoV-2 virus and incidence of COVID-19 are forcing nonprofits to reinvent processes and service delivery at an unanticipated pace. As organizations react to these new challenges in an unpredictable economy, management’s day-to-day operations also must evolve. Organizations have been forced to shutter physical office spaces, and maintaining effective financial operations has become a major challenge. This has been especially problematic for organizations with accounting departments that rely on physical documents and manual processes. The right technologies serviced by a reliable accounting firm can make outsourced accounting a viable solution and enhance financial operations. 

1.    Financial Efficiency

The shelter-in-place restrictions imposed as a result of COVID-19 have forced numerous organizations deemed nonessential to close their offices. While cash inflows may have slowed, accounting functions must continue. Bills must be paid, payroll must be processed and grants need to be billed and collected. Financial analysis also is now more paramount than ever. Organizations that are equipped with an outsourced accounting solution are well positioned to keep financial operations running smoothly amid local restrictions and remote work environments.

2.    Agility

While the pandemic has wreaked economic havoc on the nonprofit community, many organizations are experiencing significant increases in demand for essential services. The current situation presents a great opportunity for organizations that are adaptable to new funding sources and proactive in managing and projecting cash flows. The ability to be agile to meet the evolving demand will be a leading indicator of survival and success. A trusted accounting outsourcing provider with diverse knowledge and experience can help organizations focus on their mission and remain agile while evaluating possible alternatives.  

3.    Resource Savings

Now more than ever, nonprofits need to evaluate costs and trim nonessential spending. Outsourcing through a firm allows for the flexibility to purchase “just-in-time” services when an organization needs support and cut back on services when budgets are tight. A nonprofit also can benefit when services are provided by a mix of experience levels and skill sets found within an outsourcing firm, allowing access to high-level financial advisors on an as-needed basis. This support can provide additional capacity for nonprofit leaders to focus on the organization’s mission.

4.    Adaptive Communication

The move toward technology-based communication has accelerated through programs like Zoom, Teams and Skype. These technologies have temporarily replaced face-to-face meetings with virtual meetings. Although there’s still inherent value associated with in-person meetings, it seems apparent that additional technology-based communication is here to stay. The finance and accounting outsourcing industry is experiencing a similar technological trajectory. Organizations already engaged with a trusted outsourced accounting provider are reaping the accounting, finance and communication benefits. 

5.    Technical Expertise

One of the most critical considerations when choosing a respected outsourced accounting provider is the firm’s technical expertise. The advantages to this have rarely been more evident than in the current environment amid an abundance of new legislation, including the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. The unprecedented volume of new rules, regulations, loan options and grant funding has presented finance and accounting opportunities for organizations but also has created a level complexity that has led to some uncertainty. Nonprofits are relying on their trusted advisors’ expertise now more than ever. Our clients have relied on us as individual advisors and on BKD for relevant news, changing guidelines and new regulations through our COVID-19 Resource Center. To learn more, check out our webinar “The New Normal – COVID-19’s Impact on the People, Processes & Technology of Finance Departments.”

As with most topics related to COVID-19, changes are being made rapidly. Please note that this information is current as of the date of publication. To connect with a BKD Trusted Advisor or learn more about BKD’s Nonprofit Advisory Services, fill out the Contact Us form below.

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