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The New Era in Small Charity Accounting and Bookkeeping

Triodos Bank and Charity Business launch Accounts in a Box

23-09-2010 | Charity Business, the leading provider of outsourced financial back office solutions to the charity and not for profit sector, in partnership with Triodos Bank, today launched Accounts in a Box, a new bookkeeping and accountancy solution that aims to overcome the issues posed by Cameron’s creation of a ‘big society’ and the spending cuts and accountability in the third sector.

In order to help cope with the cuts being imposed across the third sector, while simultaneously helping charities become part of the ‘big society’, Accounts in a Box provides a unique package specifically designed for smaller charities with an income of £250,000 or less. This revolutionary new service will enable small charities to focus on delivering a positive impact on society and the work they contribute to the local and wider community, rather than getting caught up with time-consuming bookkeeping and accounting.

Transparency and accountability are becoming increasingly important, with an ACEVO taskforce reporting that there should be a drive towards a more transparent sector that is focused on public impact. An independent survey, conducted on behalf of the Charity Commission demonstrates that the public are ‘placing increasing importance on knowing how charities spend their money and what they achieve’ (Charity Commission: July 2010). In fact, 96% of respondents stressed the importance of charities making their spending public. The third sector therefore needs to continue focusing their attention on providing the public and their members with detailed accounts and budget reports.

Mark Freeman, CEO of Charity Business, commented: “We have been looking at the issue of how smaller charities could benefit from better information that is cost effective while not complicated -hence the development of Accounts in a Box.  The solution will allow smaller charities to have all their bookkeeping, management of debtors, supplier and payroll for between 1% to 2% of income where it normally costs around 7.4%”.

”Our goal at Charity Business has been, and will continue to be, to make the not for profit sector more efficient and effective in the finance function and Accounts in a Box will achieve this for the smaller charities inline with the services we provide for larger charities”

“We are delighted that we are also able to offer a banking solution via Triodos Bank that will simplify, modernise and improve the effectiveness of cash management for smaller charities at the same time.” 

Dr Bevis Watts, Head of Business Banking at Triodos Bank, added:  “Triodos already works with a large number of charities and third sector organisations so the merits of creating a standardised package designed specifically for smaller charities were clear to us. We are delighted to be working in partnership with Charity Business to develop this cost-effective and sustainable solution and look forward to helping increasing numbers of smaller organisations focus on delivering their charitable missions to help society and the environment at large.”

Accounts in a Box uses a predominantly online service, something advised by Andrew Hind at the Conference of the Association of Charity Independent Examiners in which he urged charities facing funding cuts to begin looking at the possibility of capturing the power of online technology. It is a cost-effective way of ensuring all accounts are kept in check without the need for an in-house clerk and will simultaneously provide an accessible report that denotes exactly where money is going thereby solving the accountability issue. Having a clear set of monthly reports will assist charities in managing their finances while at the same time providing them with comprehensive information to make decisions with.

For more information about the Accounts in a Box service please go to www.accountsinabox.co.uk .

Editor Notes:

1. Charity Business was developed from within the charity sector by Mark Freeman in 2000 based on a survey of 7 large charities that would be able to save annually £2 million.  Charity Business currently works with 150 plus charities in the UK through the provision of outsourced financial processing solution.

2. Triodos is the UK’s leading bank for social enterprise, and a fast-growing force within the charities sector. It currently has lending and commitments in excess of £150 million to a hugely diverse range of clients – from local village halls to major regional, national and international organisations – all working towards lasting positive change and a more sustainable future for all. For more information on Triodos Bank visit www.triodos.co.uk or contact Lisa Stanley on 0117 980 9721 or 07983 002 013 or e-mail lisa.stanley@triodos.co.uk

3. Mark Freeman previously worked for the Health Foundation as its Director of Finance and at Marie Curie Cancer Care as it Head of Finance and was Chairman of CFDG before setting up Charity Business in 2000.

4. Accounts in a Box is a separate entity to Charity Business and was developed to address the smaller charity accounting needs and requirements

5. Further details can be obtained by attending the launch on the 23rd September at 3pm at Charity Business office, Suite 37 – 40, Cherry Orchard North, Kembrey Park, Swindon SN2 8UH or by contacting Philippa Buckley on 01793 554 230 or e-mail Philippa.Buckley@charitybusiness.com.

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