CancerCare: Engineering a Complete Accounting Upgrade on a Tight Schedule
CancerCare has been providing support, services, and information to cancer patients and their families since 1944. The organization employs a team of social workers with specialized oncology expertise to help anyone affected by cancer navigate the treatment and recovery process. Financial and co-pay assistance are also available, as well as a wealth of free information and resources. CancerCare programs have helped people in all 50 states and directly touched the lives of over 185,000 people.
In late 2016, CancerCare was using FundWare for accounting and finance and largely loving it. Chief Financial Officer John Rutigliano describes the system as an “old Volvo” – something familiar, reliable, and entirely adequate. The only problem was that the owner of FundWare had decided to suspend support, permanently leaving the old Volvo without any place to take it for service and repairs. Faced with a solution that would quickly become unusable, CancerCare went looking for other options.
Looking for a Replacement and an Upgrade
Most nonprofits replace their accounting software because it’s underpowered and inadequate. CancerCare was in the unique position of having to replace a solution it didn’t particularly want to give up. Therefore, one of the priorities during the software selection process was finding something that could replicate the functionality of FundWare plus add meaningful new features and capabilities designed specifically for nonprofits.
Moving to the cloud was a priority so that accounting could become less dependent on the IT department to manage on-premises servers. Digitizing data and automating reporting were also crucial so that the five-person accounting team could become more efficient and productive. The final goal was giving managers and other non-financial professionals access to self-service reporting tools and in-depth financial data.
“The onboarding process was really the crowning achievement. They knew where we were coming from, they approached things in a logical way, and they pushed us just enough to stay on schedule. After it was done, I couldn’t imagine doing it without them.”
CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER
CancerCare considered several accounting solutions built specifically for nonprofits before selecting Sage Intacct. According to Rutigliano, the fact that the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) endorsed this product seriously influenced their final selection. That and the fact that it came so highly recommended by JMT Consulting – a partner that CancerCare had already come to know and trust.
Optimizing Implementation on a Deadline
Rutigliano had worked with JMT Consulting once before on a FundWare project. He also knew that we worked exclusively with nonprofits and valued the experience and expertise we have in this space. Confident that Sage Intacct and JMT Consulting were both the right choice, CancerCare chose to move forward with the implementation…as long as it could be completed ASAP.
Since FundWare was going to become intentionally obsolete, time was of the essence. CancerCare also needed to have a new accounting solution in place before the start of its fiscal year in early July. That left less than nine months for JMT Consulting to get the solution implemented, customized, and optimized.
“The onboarding process was really the crowning achievement,” says Rutigliano. “They knew where we were coming from, they approached things in a logical way, and they pushed us just enough to stay on schedule. After it was done, I couldn’t imagine doing it without them.”
Evaluating the Upgrade in Action
CancerCare got a new accounting and finance solution, but did it deliver an actual upgrade? Rutigliano reports that Sage Intacct has delivered everything the organization wanted.
The cloud orientation allows accounting to operate independently instead of having to continually turn to IT for support. Automated reporting has saved time and energy while making it easy for stakeholders outside of accounting to access in-depth financial insights. Most importantly, CancerCare got the upgrade it wanted without sacrificing anything in the process.
When asked what kind of impact Sage Intacct has had on the nonprofit mission, Rutigliano says that it’s “not a detractor.” That sounds like faint praise, yet it perfectly describes what most nonprofits need from accounting – something that always facilitates the mission without ever compromising it.
Rutigliano is similarly satisfied to keep working with JMT Consulting. “They have an incredibly responsive help desk. Really, their ongoing support is amazing.” The fact that we are a preferred reseller for Sage Intacct has also helped. Since we have a close relationship with the developer, we can pass on comments and concerns expressed by our clients. Sage Intacct takes this feedback as seriously as we do and uses it to refine the solution regularly.
In the short time that Rutigliano and his team have been using Sage Intacct, he has already seen the solution become more relevant. “We’ve made suggestions, then seen them show up in the actual solution. The close relationship between JMT Consulting and Sage Intacct really works in our favor.”
CancerCare wasn’t eager to give up its old accounting solution. But after working with the replacement, they have no regrets.
Replacing a much-loved accounting solution that would no longer be supported by the developer. CancerCare wanted an upgrade that could offer the same features while adding automated reporting and a cloud orientation.
Working with JMT Consulting to implement the Sage Intacct financial management platform.
Accounting is less dependent on IT, and non-financial users are less dependent on accountants. The entire organization benefits from having a smart and seamless accounting department equipped with all the tools for financial stewardship.
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