Helping the helpers at Wellington City Mission
Wellington City Mission is a large organisation with complex needs. The charity helps hundreds of struggling Wellingtonians every day, providing everything from food parcels and hot meals to social work, education, and rest home care. Switching to MYOB Advanced has helped simplify and streamline day-to-day management and financial reporting, making it easier to keep vital services running smoothly.
The challenge: Complex requirements, preparing for disaster
After successfully using Greentree to manage their finances for years, the Mission needed a new software solution. Although Greentree worked well, it was server-based in the organisation’s premises, so staff couldn’t access information remotely if access to the building was compromised. This made things difficult in times of crisis and hindered the ability for us to offer flexible working conditions and for staff to work from any location from any device. Peter Hooker, from Endeavour: "During the Wellington earthquake, they had no access to office and servers for a couple of weeks."
The new system would also need be able to handle reporting for different business areas, record profits and losses for the entire organisation, and offer remote data storage.
“Our strategy led us to believe that we should go to an online subscription model for our key software requirements. That was the client management system, finance and fundraising,” says Corporate Services Manager Chris Gray.
The solution: Flexible and cloud based
After working with IT consultants and setting requirements Wellington City Mission set out to find their new cloud-based system. Like most charities, they don’t have a huge budget, so they also needed something affordable.
Chris explains: “We did a search and looked at the smaller solutions from MYOB and Xero, that are great options for small businesses but from a reporting sense they didn’t quite stack up for a larger complex organisation.”
Endeavour have worked with Wellington City Mission for many years with Greentree and after the consultations, suggested MYOB Advanced. Because it’s a flexible, cloud-based system with the capacity to handle reporting for all the different parts of the business, Advanced turned out to be the ideal solution.
Peter Hooker from Endeavour says: While Wellington City Mission are a lean organisation, complex reporting across their organisations and in particular the GST requirements for their Rest Home facility made them ideally suited to MYOB Advanced.
Chris says, “What it does is run proper cost-centre reporting, and that’s where we can easily code through to different parts of the business. And then users can log in and see that themselves, which is very beneficial.”
He explains that having all the financial information in one place that’s accessible to all managers offers “fantastic flexibility.”
The Wellington Mission management team worked with Endeavour to implement MYOB Advanced for financial management and reporting. In future, they may add modules in other areas such as fundraising and client management.
The outcomes: Flexibility, finance, and future-proofing
For Wellington City Mission, moving to MYOB Advanced helped simplify tracking and financial reporting in a complex, multi-faceted organisation.
The different parts of the business can be monitored, giving the management team a good overall view as transactions can also be coded and linked to different areas – including the Mission-run rest home, which has 80 staff. Managers at these facilities can log-in to the system to track their own progress and check monthly financial reports, so they don’t need to rely on other team members.
Chris explains: “So if I’m out at the rest home on the other side of the city, I can log onto any computer and check in on things. And of course, from a disaster recovery point of view we don’t have to rely on a server to store our information anymore.”
Because MYOB Advanced is based in the cloud, it also gives staff access anywhere, at any time. In a business with multiple offices and facilities all over the city, this is vital. As Chris puts it: “Fundamentally all we need now is an internet connection, and we’re away laughing.”
Staff can input data or check numbers from anywhere, which helps speed up processes and saves time better spent helping clients. Better yet, all their critical information is secure, no matter what.
The software has the flexibility and capacity to adapt to the Mission’s future needs as well. They’re eyeing up other modules that could add efficiency to their fundraising, donor communication, and client management activities. For what they’re doing currently, Chris says they’re pleased with the value that’s been delivered.
Chris explains, “as a charity we don’t have lots of money for back office functions, and MYOB Advanced does a great job. With the Endeavour team we had a remarkably fast and affordable transition that got us up and running, has kept things simple and made everything operational with very little down time.
We needed a lot from the system, and it was all done for a great price. So that is really positive.” Another great feature is the ability to make changes to structures, charts and codes yourselves in the knowledge that you’re not going to break it, this is great as if you have business changes you can easily accommodate them.