Running a non-profit organization (NPO) is a lot of work. On top of the day-to-day operations, managing the needs of members, and working within the constraints of tight budgets and specific funding agreements, there’s the whole matter of bookkeeping and accounting—which may not exactly be your favourite part of the job.

The size and complexity of your NPO will dictate your organization’s needs, making a pretty strong case for working with an accounting firm.

Here’s three reasons a CPA firm could be a good fit for your NPO’s accounting needs.

1) You want supplementary support on an as needed basis

Many NPOs don’t have the budget to hire a CPA firm to do everything for them. Most often, we work with nonprofit clients who have an internal bookkeeper who handles their day-to-day needs. They tend to come to us for help with specific questions or problems they can’t solve on their own.

This is the beauty of working with a firm—you don’t necessarily have to outsource everything, but you’ll have reliable access to advice when you need it. 

2) You want to set your organization up for success

If your organization is just starting out, or if you’re undergoing a period of growth or transition, a CPA firm can help you get set up for long-term success.

For example, we provide education to nonprofit leadership and boards so they can better understand CRA requirements, funding agreements, and bookkeeping processes. When you have a limited budget, it’s always worth asking CPA firms if they offer one-time consultations and/or educational workshops.

Whether you choose to continue to outsource your accounting needs in the future or have an internal bookkeeper take it from there, consulting with experts early on can save you time and resources down the road.

It can also help ensure your paperwork is in order in the event of an audit or review from the CRA.

3) You find the ins and outs of your accounting needs confusing

As you probably already know, nonprofit accounting can be complicated.

Your needs depend on what type of NPO you run, the value of your assets, where you get your funding from, and whether or not you’re whether or not you’re required to have your financial statements prepared as part of a review or audit engagement.

Without an accounting background, sorting through all these details can be tricky and time-consuming. And, every minute you spend trying to self-learn the intricacies of nonprofit accounting is a minute you could have spent on the day-to-day operations of your organization.

Working with a firm means you get an expert set of eyes on your books, ensuring everything is done correctly the first time around.

Need nonprofit accounting support?

If working with a CPA firm sounds like a good fit for your organization, we’d love to chat with you!

RHN is a full service firm that offers specific services for not-for-profits like yours. Whether you need support to supplement your internal bookkeeping, want advice on best practices, or need help with a particular question, we’d be happy to help.

Contact us for more information.

This post has been prepared for general information purposes. It is not advice. The information presented may not fit your unique situation, please consult one of our trusted business advisors at RHN CPA for further clarification and interpretation of your circumstances.