5 Ways Fund Accounting Simplifies Financial Reporting for Community Health Centers

With multiple points of accountability and dynamic funding sources, accounting professionals in community health centers face complex challenges.

Not the least of those challenges is the fact that there is never enough time in the day to get everything done.

The right technology can be like an assistant, automating tasks and putting important data at your fingertips. Using technology to streamline even some processes can free up a tremendous amount of time, so you spend less time on manual reporting and tracking and more time analyzing and elevating actionable information that drives bottom-line financial impact.

Fund accounting software with sub-fund capabilities makes it easy to manage multiple budget scenarios, understand encumbrances, and automate your internal controls for the highest level of accuracy and transparency.

Approval workflows that automatically enforce compliance

Grants are the backbone of many community health centers. And with that form of funding comes significant compliance requirements.

A fund accounting system with a segmented chart of accounts enables you to build systemic controls into each specific grant to ensure any booked financial activity is compliant with available budgets and contract restrictions. When expenses are automatically allowed or declined based on the parameters you’ve established in the system, you can feel confident knowing that you won’t overspend against your grants.

No more juggling multiple spreadsheets and wondering if everything was entered correctly. Imagine running monthly reports without having to scramble to make last-minute corrections and changes in a pivot table.

Built-in encumbrance tracking

When your software allows you to encumber expenses at the grant level and automatically relieve those encumbrances when the expense is booked, you always know the exact status of funding availability in real time. And you no longer need to spend time manually manipulating your financials offline or with mock expenses and additional journal entries.

With fund accounting software, you get an extra level of control over grant expense tracking and reporting. Everything in the grant record is available in a dashboard or built-in report. No need to export information to spreadsheets, manipulate the data, and then make it presentable.

Separate budgets and multi-scenario budgets

With dynamic funding and multiple lines of service, your budget is never final. You need software that offers the flexibility of multi-scenario budgeting and forecasting by funding source. And grant-specific budgets aren’t reliant on your organization’s fiscal year, so you can plan more appropriately by the grant term instead.

Plus, you can create multiple scenarios and keep them separate from your approved budget until the grant is awarded and you’re ready. You can easily pull a lost grant out of your budget and automatically see the funding gap that has just been created. In the time it would take you to reformat the budget and do the calculations, you can have the report sent to your leadership with recommendations on how to replace that funding.

Intuitive dashboards and reports

When your software is built for the unique challenges of community health centers, the dashboards and reports include all the information you need without extra work. You can compare billing between service lines or locations, plus you can quickly identify anomalies and trends in areas like cost per patient.

With clear data on your financial performance, you will be able to quickly and proactively surface crucial information to make business decisions and recommendations to your board. For example, you can identify if a particular location isn’t billing enough to offset its cost so your leadership can decide if it needs to be consolidated with another location.

Simplified document management

In the world of community health, details matter for both your patients and for your accounting. Many of your funding sources come with restrictions and fine print. You don’t want to lose a grant because you missed a reporting requirement.

With the right fund accounting system, you can attach non-financial information, such as a grant award letter and reporting requirements, directly to the project. With the details for each grant at your fingertips, everyone on the team knows what is needed and when.

Get More Control Over Your Day with Blackbaud Financial Edge NXT®

The right fund accounting software can make a big impact on how you spend your time. Instead of updating multiple spreadsheets and spending hours formatting reports, you can dig into dashboards built specifically for your community health needs to identify trends in your spending and community needs. Expense management processes become automated, instead of you chasing down approvals every time someone is out of the office. With Blackbaud Financial Edge NXT, you get accounting software built for organizations that are working to make their communities better. Let the system do the work so you can make more impact.

Are you ready for a fund accounting system that will eliminate manual processes while also providing clear accountability? Check out our on-demand Financial Edge NXT product tour and start taking control of your day.