Welcome to the Non-Profit Recession Watch blog site

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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
The Non-Profit Recession Watch blog has been developed by ReStructure Non-Profit Consulting (www.restructure.ca) as a means to provide leaders of non-profit organizations with a central repository of information on the recession as well as strategies, tips, and resources to manage the impact of the recession on the organizations they lead. Information relating to the recession and its impact on Canada, US and UK will be updated daily in the "Recession Watch Data & Informaiton" sections below, and blogs will be written to provide information on how the recession has impacted the non-profit sector specifically. Please feel free to share information, news and resources with me - Betty Ferreira at blog [at] restructure.ca.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Cost Allocation

Cost Allocation

The full-day "Enabling Resilience: How to Restructure and Revitalize Your Non-Profit Organization" workshop produced by ReStructure Non-Profit Consulting includes an in-depth practical section on understanding how to allocate true costs, understanding direct / indirect costs, as well as a section on financial analysis and reporting.

This excerpt is taken from the NFPAccounting Blog regarding the importance of strategic cost allocation for Non-Profit Organizaitons.

Cost allocation is a method for apportioning shared expenses or shared costs (also called common costs, or directly allocable costs) across functional areas.

Cost allocation is important because, done accurately and consistently, it can provide a realistic picture of what different programs and other activities cost.

There are a number of cost allocation methods out there, and several of the most common are:

- Payroll. Allocations are based on a percentage of the total actual time worked or the total payroll dollars charged by all employees in each functional area. For example, four employees’ time sheet data shows that they spent 15 percent of their aggregated time during the last payroll period on Program A, 35 percent of their aggregated time on Program B, 25 percent on program C, 15 percent on Administration and 10 percent on Fundraising.

- Cost-to-cost or direct cost. Allocations are based on the previous year’s percentage breakdowns for each functional area.

- Square footage. Allocations are based on the proportionate space occupied by each functional area in your office or worksite. For example, Program A occupies 10 percent of your office space, Program B occupies 20 percent, Program C 50 percent, Administration 5 percent and Fundraising 15 percent. This method is useful for allocating rent, utilities and other occupancy-related costs.

Friday, October 2, 2009

San Francisco Foundation's Nonprofit Transitions Fund Accepting Applications for "Intentional Change"

As part of the San Francisco Foundation's emergency response grantmaking, the foundation created the Nonprofit Transitions Fund to help nonprofit organizations rethink and regroup in response to the downturn in the economy.

The goal of the Nonprofit Transitions Fund is to help nonprofits reduce costs and time spent on administrative work, as well as increase productivity.

The fund will provide a total of $350,000 to support: serious planning efforts, consultants, due diligence, and other expenses related to the following activities: back office collaborations between two or more organizations (including rent, equipment, and group insurance joint purchasing, as well as centralizing human resources, payroll, benefits administration, and financial and grants management); service delivery joint ventures between two or more organizations; merger/acquisition/consolidation; post-merger integration or closure costs; dissolution (voluntary/involuntary); and bankruptcy.

This fund is intended for activities such as strategic planning and fund development. It is not intended for organizations engaging in staff transitions, capacity building work (such as streamlining internal operations), and/or establishing fiscal sponsorship.

Applicant organizations must have 501(c)(3) nonprofit status (or a fiscal sponsor) and must primarily serve residents in at least one of the five Bay Area counties served by the foundation: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, and San Mateo.

Requests will only be considered from organizations that have received programmatic or operational support from the San Francisco Foundation within the last five years.

Grants will generally range from $10,000 to $30,000 each.

Visit the SFF Web site for complete program information.

Contact:Link to Complete RFP

Funders and Non-Profit Organization's response to the Recession

As most of us are back to work from our summer vacations, information and research regarding the contiued impact of the recession on funders and non-profit organizations is becoming increasingly available.

ReStructure is completing an informal survey of existing research regarding the non-profit sector's response to the recession and will post this synthesis of information from time-to-time on this blog. Some fo the research we are reviewing consists of individual and synthesis research from various geographic regoins in Canada, USA, UK and Australia.

The information that will be collected, synthesized and reported to you will be information that has been made public by various funders and non-profit associations and organizations and can be found on various internet websites. As there is a lot of information on a number of sites, we will look to synthesizing this information to provide you with a summary of this research!

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