When you’re running a charity, it’s really important to make sure you have the right systems in place to keep on top of your accounts.
Without setting up suitable processes, you run the risk of overlooking any potential errors which could have a large impact on the way your charity works.
That’s why you should consider looking at the many software packages available for your accounting needs.
Not only could the right package help you avoid any pitfalls, but it could also help strengthen your structure. Here are some reasons why you should explore your options.
Software package pricing
A number of software providers offer their products at discount prices for charities like yours.
One example is Sage’s not-for-profit software, which is discounted by 50% for charities. That means the most basic package will only cost you £6 a month, or £12 if you want the full range of functions from Sage.
QuickBooks also offers a discount for charities depending on the package you choose.
While only some of these software providers offer discounts, the majority of the others provide free trials for your charity, so it’s worth testing a few out to see which offers the most for the best price.
Choosing the right features
One of the many useful things about modern accounting software is the ability to add bolt-ons to the more basic packages.
While you will want your chosen software to cover all the basics of bookkeeping and data entry, you can also consider a far more comprehensive bundle which will serve as a one-stop-shop for all of your accounting needs.
A prime example of this would be the offerings from Xero. There are three main prices:
- Xero starter – £14 a month and includes being able to send five bills and 20 invoices.
- Xero standard – £28 a month and includes unlimited cashflow, bills and invoices.
- Xero premium – £36 a month and does everything standard does but also handles multiple currencies.
If you were to pay for Xero standard, you would have complete control over your charity’s accounts. This means you could pay bills, connect to a bank account, send invoices and even take payments. Xero can link to external apps for donor management and fundraising, as well.
Also, when choosing a software package, you must ensure it is compatible with Making Tax Digital (MTD). Some bundles are officially recognised by HMRC, so choose one of those.
When working as part of a charity, you must adhere to the Charities standard of recommended practice (SORP).
These rules dictate how to keep financial records when working in a charity. This means accounts preparation, organising your invoices and receipts and providing a clear picture of your income and expenditure.
Staying compliant with your SORP will be made much more straightforward with a comprehensive accounting software package, as you’ll easily be able to streamline all of your financial data and prepare reports in a digestible format.
Here to help
At JCS, we work closely with charities and not-for-profit organisations to help them get the most out of their online accounting. If you have any questions about which software will work best for your charity, we’ll be happy to support you in making a decision.