- Financial Administration: Every organization is accountable to its members, donors, funders and the governing board. The organization must be able to show whether it is making a profit, breaking even or suffering a loss. In order to do this, the organization must authorize each payment and record all transactions. A bookkeeping system such as nonprofit treasurer software, can facilitate all of this. An efficient bookkeeping system like MoneyMinder will ensure that the organization’s financial information is always at hand. In smaller organizations, the treasurer actually performs all bookkeeping duties; in larger organizations these duties may be delegated. The treasurer is also responsible for managing bank accounts. In small organizations, the treasurer may be required to make deposits and withdrawals. It is the duty of the treasurer to promote good banking practices. Other important administrative duties of the treasurer include ensuring that the organization complies with government laws and tax regulations, as well as protecting the organization against theft and fraud.
- Financial Management: Financial management involves planning, budgeting and reporting. It is the role of the treasurer to prepare a budget. A budget predicts expected expenses and estimates income. It makes allocations for unforeseen expenses, hence minimizing risk. The budget must be approved by the board if there is one. It is likely that members of the board do not have financial expertise. It is the role of the treasurer to explain the budget in simple and plain terms without the use of confusing financial jargon. The treasurer must present regular reports on the organization’s financial position. Prepare accounts for audits and provide advice on possible investments.
- Liaison with The Auditor: All accounts must be audited at least once per year, by an auditor if there is one. The auditor is normally elected. It is the role of the treasurer to provide the auditor with all Assets (Cash in Bank, Accounts Receivables and Fixed Assets), Liabilities and Revenue. A non-profit organization may ask a qualified individual to serve as honorary auditor, this is cost-effective and will save the organization a great deal of money each year.
- Fundraising Advice: It is the role of the treasurer to advise the organization on its fundraising strategy. The treasurer may also be required to prepare proposals for sponsorships and grants. Depending on the nature of the organization, they might even develop a fundraising committee; the treasurer must work closely with this committee to ensure that fundraising activities comply with government policy and legislation.
- Report to The Board: It is the role of the treasurer to provide regular financial reports to the board. This report must always include an explanation for any discrepancies between the budget and current expenditure. In the event that there is a major discrepancy, it is the role of the treasurer to recommend an alternate course of action.
Tip: Check out this handy year-end treasurer’s checklist
The role of the treasurer is a huge responsibility. Duties may vary depending on the nature of the organization. For smaller organizations, some of the duties we’ve listed might be overkill. Duties may be delegated to members or volunteers; however, the responsibility is always that of the treasurer. The way in which duties are shared is dependent on the skills of the treasurer as well as how much time he has to offer. An efficient treasurer will ensure that their organization is operated like a well-oiled machine. Records will be transparent and current, the organization will be protected from fraud and theft, and the funds generated will be well managed and invested.
*image source: cupcakebusinesscards.com