Implementing accounting software is essential for any organization, whether a large business or a small NGO. However, there are several steps involved if you are in the process of implementing a new accounting system. This article will take you through each step to help you implement your new fund accounting software successfully.
As you’re considering your accounting software needs, there are several questions you should ask yourself:
- What are the accounting software needs of your organization?
- What is the purpose of accounting software?
- How much control do you want over the accounting software?
- What is your budget for the accounting software?
You’ll also need to consider support requirements. For example, do you want a provider who will provide ongoing training and support as needed or do they expect NGOs to be self-sufficient with their own internal resources and knowledge base?
Blackbaud experts say it helps you “Govern your financials—from user-specific access rights to powerful approval controls—so you can rest assured that your data is secure.”
- Prepare a project plan:
Before you start looking for your accounting software, you need to prepare a project plan. The first thing that you need to do is define the roles and responsibilities of all the stakeholders involved in this process. Once this is done, you can proceed with other steps, such as setting up a training plan and identifying the training needs of each stakeholder, creating an audit trail for every activity, setting up communication channels for collaboration between different departments within your organization and more!
- Identify Training Needs:
Once all the roles have been defined, it’s time to identify their respective training needs through either internal or external resources like our experienced trainers who specialize in accounting software implementation at NGOs across various industries like healthcare, retail, etcetera!
Once the tender has been awarded to a preferred bidder, the software system must be installed without any issues. The testing of the accounting software system should be carried out both during and after installation to ensure that all features work as expected. The following points will help improve your chances of success:
- Test for functionality, usability and reliability by performing a mock transaction on paper or using an existing system if available. Any changes made during this test should be noted so that they can be implemented in future processes.
- Test for compliance with regulatory requirements such as SOX (Sarbanes-Oxley Act) in case you are working with financial information. Check whether or not your chosen vendor has been certified by CPA Australia or other relevant bodies around data security, such as ISO 27001 or SOC 2.
After the implementation, you might feel that the job is done, and you can move on. However, it is essential to understand that your accounting system will be part of your business operations for years to come.
During this period, some common issues may arise:
- Inconsistency in reports (for example, incorrect balance sheet)
- Lack of proper monitoring and control over cash flow
- Inadequate management information
The key to success is to be prepared and well-informed when implementing a new accounting software system. You can easily do it with the help of our blog post, which will guide you through all the steps needed for successful implementation.