Knowledge and Insights

Assessing Near-Term Nonprofit Challenges

Assessing Near-Term Nonprofit Challenges

Friends and colleagues,

I am writing this on the train ride home from Washington D.C., where Kyle, Lovepreet and I attended the annual AICPA Not-for-Profit Conference.  The three-day getaway gives us a chance to step back and reflect on the changes that our firm and clients need to know about, and better yet, to convene with our peer CPA firms and nonprofit organizations to hear about their challenges and what they are doing from a best practice perspective.  The top nonprofit challenges noted this year are:

  • Threat of donor data being breached
  • Finding the money to accomplish the mission
  • Building public trust
  • Complying with federal and state requirements
  • Retaining/engaging donors
  • Staffing/resources
  • Strategic planning/setting priorities
  • Obtaining or incorporating technology needed to accomplish the mission
  • Sustainable business model

Do any of these challenges sound familiar?  You could sum them all up under the veil of enterprise level risk management, although I don’t think buying an insurance policy will be an ample risk mitigation strategy for some or even all of these threats.

In addition to brushing up on our audit knowledge, Kyle took classes on auditing complexities of nonprofit accounting, new accounting standards updates and the implementation thereof, a sneak peek into what the Financial Standards Accounting Board (FASB) is up to and tax compliance and charitable registration issues. Lovepreet attended classes related to single audit, uniform guidance, YellowBook changes, focusing on best practices for strong internal controls, while I took a predominately tax-based curriculum.  In future newsletters, we will elaborate on some of the knowledge we gained in specific areas that are relevant to the vast majority of our clients.  We are already planning our next nonprofit enhancement seminar on the new reporting standards.  We will work closely with our technology company to educate you and your employees on cyber threats and what traps and phishing schemes to look for in your daily use of technology that can help protect your organization.

Kyle, Lovepreet and I agree that one of the best parts of the conference was the keynote address by Jason Dorsey of the Center for Generational Kinetics, which conducted a study on multigenerational issues in the workforce.  The session was amazing.  Through their study, they believe that Gen Z will be very much like the baby boomers.  They also said that the Millennial Generation may split into two unique groups.  Gen Z will most likely surpass the Millennial Generation in the workforce (because they are motivated to learn and just want a chance to succeed). Click here to read the white paper prepared by Jason and his company.

As always, our goal is to ensure that our staff understands the threats that our clients face and the effective risk management strategies needed to combat them.  Mercadien’s service offerings are designed to assist clients with identifying risks, and then to create and implement a plan to minimize them.  We always encourage clients and friends to visit our website or call and ask us about how we can help you make sound financial decisions.  Contact me at or 609-689-9700 and stay tuned for more!