Let’s talk accounting! It’s probably not the most exciting topic when it comes to church ministries. But it is one of the most important. Great churches need a great accounting platform to keep ministries on track and on budget. In this case, a “great” platform is one that’s created for the church and integrated with your church management software (ChMS). There are basic similarities of course – money comes in, and money goes out. But churches aren’t businesses. And when churches use accounting software designed for businesses, it’s a missed opportunity on many levels. Since ShelbyNext Financials is designed with churches in mind, we can share six specific ways that a ministry-driven accounting program will strengthen your ministrie Made-for-the-Church Accounting Software Helps Save Time. An accounting platform designed for ministry can streamline a church’s financial processes and actions. This means reduced administrative work and more efficiency for your church. And church accounting software will save time; it means you won’t have to convert processes from a traditional business standpoint to fit within Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) principles. As an example, if you compare Shelby Systems accounting to QuickBooks, you can see why it’s important to use a program specifically designed for churches. Ministry-Driven Accounting Lets You Manage Church Funds from Anywhere With a cloud-based accounting program, you can gain secure access to your church finances from anywhere, at any time. You can view data and reports in real-time. And with automatic data backups, you’ll have peace of mind. If someone on your team isn’t in the office but needs to balance the books or check the budget, they can do so from any device with internet access. Church-Focused Accounting Offers Reporting That is Tailored to Your Church Systematic financial reporting that is designed for ministries can give you an in-depth look at your church’s performance. It also helps churches adhere to their budgets. Monthly or quarterly reports can keep ministry teams aware of spending and budget variances. Reconciliation reports give you a great summary of bank statements and transactions. Having access to financial reports is extremely important, because churches have such a wide range of donors, clergy, and financial councils that need to view specific reports. Integrated Software Lets You Give Your Members Personalized Giving Statements Providing giving statements to donors can help update members about the progress of your church’s vision. You can emphasize the mission and impact that your organization is having on the community. This is a great way to show how donated funds are being used. You can build greater trust with your congregation by showing transparency among church operations and finances. When church accounting is a cohesive part of the complete church management system, collecting info for giving statements is simple. You’ll also be able to easily track who has given what amount and then send them an update to their address or email on file (and remember to include a “thank you” message so people will feel appreciated!). Great Accounting Software Protects Your Church from Fraud It’s heartbreaking, but financial crimes like embezzlement do happen at churches. Sound accounting ensures that there are proper controls of church assets. Careful tracking of purchase orders, accounts payable, and other functions bring accountability and transparency to your books. And the reporting features mentioned above can help you keep track of funds and quickly notice any discrepancies. Church-Based Accounting Simplifies Payroll It takes a great team to run a church and make a difference in the community. With a payroll system designed for ministry, managing payroll, deductions, benefits, special allowances, and personal time for your staff members is easier because it is made with ministries in mind. ShelbyNext Financials guides the user step-by step through the payroll process. It handles special allocations and benefits. It saves costly checks by printing direct deposit receipts on standard copy paper. And it meets your data needs with a versatile reporting system. Churches have incredibly unique needs regarding how they handle their fund management, receivables, payables, and ledgers. You likely know this from experience! Shelby Systems has developed our Ultimate Guide to Church Accounting Software to illustrate how software designed with the church in mind can be extremely helpful. Find out how Shelby Systems can help you – get in touch with us here for more information about accounting that’s made for the church.