Visualizing Your Finances: How Dashboards Convey their Meaning
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While your organization is generating all kinds of financial reports on a regular basis, are you confident that they are fully understood by the board and senior staff? Are sound and realistic business decisions being made based on the correct interpretation of this financial information?
It’s not uncommon for nonprofits to produce reports while failing to leverage their meaning to advance strategic decisions. Many nonprofits are successfully using dashboards to effectively manage their organization’s financial affairs and make “metrics-driven” decisions.
Dashboards are reports that illustrate key pieces of data through easy to understand graphics, enabling you to “visualize your data.” Just as we understand the value of story-telling in our marketing and fundraising, we should recognize that the graphs and visuals used in dashboards enable our data to tell stories too. They can explain variations, raise questions whose answers significantly impact operations, promote shared understanding and engagement and help define what success means in your organization.
Nonprofit accounting specialist Your Part-Time Controller, LLC will lead you through the process of understanding the difference between data and information to help you determine if dashboards will make reporting more understandable and thus more useful and worth the time, effort and expense.
Date: November 10th, 2015
Location: Duane Morris, LLP
Address: 30 S. 17th Street, 12th Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Eric Fraint, CPA, founded Your Part-Time Controller, LLC. in 1993 to provide nonprofits with controller services on an as-needed basis. They now have offices in Washington DC, New York and Philadelphia. His extensive experience with nonprofits includes serving as treasurer or as a board member for numerous organizations including the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, the Grand Canyon Association, the Young Playwrights’ Theater of Washington, D.C., the Philadelphia Foundation, the Philadelphia Jewish Archives Center, the Jewish Publication Society, Creative Access, the Kellman Brown Academy, and Temple Beth Sholom. He has taught nonprofit financial management courses in Drexel University’s Graduate Arts Administration