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Topics of Discussion for Nonprofit Presentation

If you were asked to give a two-hour discussion on nonprofit accounting and finance to a group of people in a nonprofit who may or may not have experience in finance and accounting, what topics would you cover? I had the honor of speaking with a national nonprofit's state chapter last year at an all-staff event. I am presenting again this year. I intend to present some of the same information as I did last year because it's still relevant, but I want to introduce new material that might be more useful. What topics would you cover with a nonprofit's staff?


Topic Expert
Wayne Spivak
Title: President & CFO
LinkedIn Profile
(President & CFO, |

That they really are no different from Profit organizations. Restricted funds are like sinking funds, they have income that may be exempt and income which is not.

Otherwise, they have payables, receivables, payroll, possibly inventory, budgets. management, boards, etc.

Chris Shumate
Title: Accounting Manager
Company: Dominion Development Group, LLC
LinkedIn Profile
(Accounting Manager, Dominion Development Group, LLC) |

What would present to the people in the audience about budgets, management, and boards?

On the AP and AR side, I tend to include those as brief discussions to the large cash flow management topic.

Topic Expert
Wayne Spivak
Title: President & CFO
LinkedIn Profile
(President & CFO, |

NFPs, especially the smaller to mid-size work out of their hip pocket. They don't take budgeting seriously, management tends to be weak, so are systems and procedures and Board membership is more about donating and connections that governance.

Why not talk about those types of issues.

John Cook
Title: Independent Consultant
Company: Consultant
(Independent Consultant, Consultant) |

I find a lot of interest in split-interest agreements (especially with the larger NFPs). It's something that a lot of people haven't come across but is valuable to know the rules for. I would also suggest just going to ASC 985 and looking at other topic areas where for profit and NFP rules are different if that is what you want to hi-light.

Also, the new revenue standard has a broader scope and so you might want to look at that as well.

Len Green
Title: Performance Improvement Consultant and E..
Company: Haygarth Consulting LLC
LinkedIn Profile
(Performance Improvement Consultant and ERP Strategist, Haygarth Consulting LLC) |

How about:
1. improving insights into program expenditures so that program managers can see budgeted, committed and incurred $ year to date and lifetime to date (without using Excel and shadow systems)
2. is the NFP looking at using the cloud, social media and new forms of fund raising (e.g. crowd sourcing, text donations) and how does that affect their revenue/income processes?

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