Recommendations

Recommendations for Efficient and Effective Financial Management

  • TechSoup — discounted software for non-profits
    • Register for a free account by providing information about your 501(c)3 status
    • Purchase software licenses (Adobe, Intuit, Microsoft, etc.) for a fraction of the retail cost
    • The price for QuickBooks Premier (which includes QB Non-Profit) is currently $50 — this is the best available deal and works well for congregations!
  • QuickBooks Pro Desktop — bookkeeping software
    • Intuitive interface:  on the screen, the user fills in a check or a deposit slip, while in the background, QuickBooks enters the proper debits and credits
    • Economical:  about $200 every three years — even cheaper from TechSoup.org
    • Payroll can be incorporated easily.  Tax withholding calculations and tax reporting are available for an additional cost
    • Note that the online version of QuickBooks is a different product, and does not include the custom reporting that is essential for a non-profit organization to track its restricted funds.
    • The special features of the QuickBooks NonProfit version are not applicable for congregations, who do not file an IRS Form 990, and whose contributions often are received in weekly or monthly installments.  A congregation can use QB NonProfit, but it’s not necessary if it costs more.
    • Be sure to compare prices on intuit.com, TechSoup.org, amazon.com, and office supply stores.
  • Splashtop.com — remote access to the church computer
    • Helpful for the Treasurer, as well as for staff training
    • We offer access to our clients as a part of our services.
  • ServantKeeper — software for tracking membership and contributions
    • Desktop, Network, or Cloud versions
    • Membership: mailing lists, groups, classes, membership status, attendance, etc.
    • Contributions: contributions, pledges, donor statements meeting IRS requirements
    • Multiple user levels, allowing some staff to access membership information, keeping contributions information confidential
  • Vanco Payments — on-line giving on your website
    • On-line giving via checking accounts, one-time or recurring weekly or monthly, with very low fees
    • On-line giving via credit and debit cards via website, give-by-text, or Give+ app
    • Set up a giving page on your own website
    • On-line pledges on your website, with or without electronic payment, weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annual
    • Let them know that Congregational Finance LLC has referred you to them!
  • PEX Cards — Visa®  debit cards for staff and volunteers
    • Pre-funded Visa® debit cards for your staff and volunteers
    • You manage the funding of the cards and can move funds to individual cards as needed
    • Eliminates the need for volunteers to spend their own money and then submit a reimbursement request
    • No set up or monthly fees if you sign up through the link below
    • Streamlined application process that does *not* require the account to be linked to an individual’s personal credit rating.
    • Click here for the November 2014 CFLLC post, “Paper or Plastic?”
    • Click here for an outline of the set-up process, including sample debit card agreement for staff or volunteers.
    • Training videos are being developed including Pexcard setup in QB, downloading Pexcard activity into QB.
    • If you would like to set up an account, click here to sign up, which relays my referral code AMB99798  (Note that if you sign up directly on www.pexcard.com, you will not receive the preferred program.)
  • Church Finance Today, monthly 4-page newsletter and e-mail with important IRS and legal information.
  • CutePDF Writer — a free download that allows you to print anything to a pdf file (useful for financial reports)
  • DropBox.com — a free cloud storage application that allows you to share files with congregational leaders (useful for financial reports)
  • Sendthisfile.com — a free file transfer program that allows you to send large files
  • Zed Axis Software — to import, export, modify, or delete transactions  easily from QuickBooks.  Ask for the 20% non-profit discount.
  • Compuchecks.com — customized financial supplies
    • This is the most inexpensive source that we’ve found for supplies:
      • Printable checks
        • Voucher style gives you a check stub to give to the recipient, as well as a check stub to attach to the paperwork for your files.
        • QuickBooks requires the “Check on Top” style.
        • Check your printer to determine if you should request your checks in reverse order.
      • Printable deposit slips
        • Print a deposit slip and deposit summary directly from QuickBooks
        • Check with your bank to identify the proper routing and account numbers (may be different than the routing /account numbers on your checks.)
      • Envelopes — the self-seal window envelopes are well worth the cost, saving you the time it takes to address envelopes.
      • Endorsement stamps — “for deposit only”
    • You can send a free logo — your own organization or denomination — to print on your checks
    • Look for the 10% off $100 or 5% off $50 coupon codes in the lower right corner of the webpage.