CMDS offers support to non profits and funders that is built on:

  • Simple, effective accounting, bookkeeping, payroll and financial management systems advice and support.
  • Professional and supportive mentoring and guidance.
  • People-centred systems for putting finances in good order and keeping them that way.

 

We recognise that each organisation has its own unique needs and that those needs will probably change over time.  At CMDS we use simple, people-centred models that really work to help non profits put in place the systems and strategies needed to achieve and maintain financial health and fitness.

 Financial planning

Financial fitness and health come through effective planning both in the short term and in the long term

"If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail"   Benjamin Franklin

 

Facilitating the development of long-term strategies for both the programmes and finances of the organisation. Preparing and presenting activity based budgets. Costing of projects and programmes.

Scenario planning, financial modelling and business planning, advice and development.

Assisting with the presentation of a clear programme logic in funding proposals together with the relevant financial and organisational information.

Advising organisations on the building and investing of reserves for future growth and protection against financial instability.  This advice includes:

  • Ways to build reserves
  • Prudent use of reserves
  • Allocation of costs to projects and programmes

Developing and implementing cash flow management tools to maximise cash inflows, monitor balances and manage outflows.

Financial monitoring & reporting

If your organisation does not have the resources to employ a financial manager,  we offer ongoing financial management support relating to the effective planning, reporting and monitoring of financial and other resources.  

CMDS consultants have specialist NPO experience and are able to advise and support organisations, and their funders, in the following areas:  

Assisting with preparation for the organisation's annual audit and/or compiling the AFS.  Once drafted, we can review the AFS to ensure that they present a clear picture of the organisation’s financial health and fitness.  We can also present the AFS to the governing body, annual general meeting and funders.  

 

Designing systems and charts of accounts that provide accurate and complete financial recording in a format that enables clear comparison against budgets for effective monitoring as well as reporting to all relevant stakeholders.

Designing and analysing useful and accurate reports that include all the financial information necessary for sound decision making.

 

Helping governing body members to understand their financial responsibilities, monitor and manage risks, report to stakeholders and implement best practice in effective governance.

Financial systems and controls

Without effective systems and controls, your organisation could be losing significant resources.

CMDS is able to assist with the design and documentation of financial systems and controls that take account of the seven key principals for good internal control. (See also Reviews and Interventions).  

 

Bookkeeping & payroll

Outsourced or in-house bookkeeping using leading accounting packages, spreadsheets and experienced bookkeepers and payroll administrators.

Payroll administration can be complex and is frequently changing as new legislation is introduced and SARS strengthens compliance.   CMDS's payroll administrators prepare accurate payroll reports, payslips and IRP5's based on the current tax legislation.

Our standard bookkeeping service includes:

  • Accurate and comprehensive monthly/quarterly bookkeeping
  • Financial reports prepared for management in the desired format each month/quarter
  • Regular feedback on areas for improvement (covering systems, controls and paperwork)
  • Funder report preparation where required
  • Submission of VAT returns by e-filing where required
  • Audit preparation and drafting of annual financial statements

All our bookkeeping work is peer reviewed to ensure accuracy and the identification of areas of concern.

  • Capturing backlogs (prior financial years or periods)
  • Stop-gap relief (filling in while someone is sick or on maternity leave)
  • One-on-one training in the use of Pastel Partner/Pastel Express at the organisation's premises
  • Design and set up of a relevant chart of accounts in Pastel and Quickbooks
  • Registration for VAT and the calculation of post input tax claims
  • Set up of the organisation on Pastel Payroll
  • Processing of the monthly payroll based on current tax legislation
  • Addition of new employees and removal of terminated employees
  • Advice on tax treatment of medical aid, pension fund and retirement annuity contributions
  • Preparation of monthly payroll reports for management and for accounting purposes
  • Preparation of payslips for employees
  • Preparation of annual IRP5's and related reconciliations
  • Submission of monthly EMP201 returns and the bi-annual EMP501 returns on e-filing
  • Advice on salary structuring
  • One-on-one training in the use of Pastel Payroll

Reviews & Interventions

CMDS can address the concerns that funders, governing bodies and/or staff members have about the effectiveness of the organisation's financial management and compliance with regular, periodic or once-off reviews.

 

Assessments of accounting records, systems, financial reports, funding proposals and organisational structures – either for the non profit itself or on behalf of funders.  Organisations also benefit from the regular independent checking or internal auditing services that CMDS provides.

  • Internal auditing: We can investigate accounting records and systems and conduct regular independent checks or internal audits.
  • Monthly/quarterly review: We offer regular checking of financial information that provides management with assurance that the reports are accurate and complete and that systems and controls are being followed correctly.
  • We prefer to work with non profits to stop a crisis ever occuring but, if the worst happens, we will be there to help.  We can assist with:

    • Fraud investigations
    • Error correction
    • Fixing incomplete records or systems breakdowns
    • Preparation of reports to management and funders

    Training, mentoring and capacity building

    The CMDS team is passionate about training and capacity building.

    As well as mentoring the staff of non profit organisations, we also offer training at the request of non profits, customised where necessary, on relevant financial management, governance and other topics.

    CMDS runs open workshops on some of  these similar topics for non profits each year.

    Performance reviews and the training and capacity building of finance staff are services we also offer.

    • Basic Financial Recordkeeping & Systems
    • Introduction to NPO Financial Management
    • Preparing Successful Funding Proposals - the Financial Aspects
    • Effective Cash Flow Management
    • Financial Planning - Basic & Advanced
    • Understanding Annual Financial Statements & Financial Reports
    • Financial Sustainability (and the Tax Implications)
    • Budgeting & Costing
    • Good Governance - Financial Oversight and the Responsibility of NPO Boards
    • Effective Financial Monitoring
    • Cash & Accountability
    • Financial Approval and Monitoring of Grants
    • VAT & NPO’s
    • Risk Management
    • Financial Risk Scenarios
    • Business Models for NPOs
    • NPOs and Employees
    • Understanding Tax for NPOs
    • Section 18A Benefits& Obligations

    Finance staff screening & assessment

    CMDS can help to identify finance staffing needs and prepare job descriptions with key performance indicators.  We can also assist in the recruitment of finance staff through:

    • The development of advertisements
    • The short listing of candidates
    • Interviewing and testing candidates
    • Obtaining references

    Tax compliance & benefits

    Advice on tax benefits and compliance for non profits, including:

    • Income tax exemption
    • Section 18A status
    • VAT - (voluntary) registration
    • Employees tax
    • Other tax matters (such as Skills Development Levy).

    Services to Funders

    Funders increasingly require assurance that the work they support is effective and sustainable.  This requires a great deal of expertise and knowledge and many funders have found CMDS's support invaluable as we can:

    • Assess the financial management capacity and  health of current and prospective partner organisations.
    • Provide capacity building and training to the staff of funding organisations with regard to budgets, financial statements and other financial reports.
    • Carry out independent monitoring and review on a once-off or ongoing basis.
    • Support partner organisations to improve governance and reporting through mentoring and training.
    • Provide tools for the effective financial monitoring of organisations.
    • Review the annual financial statements and/or other financial reports of current and prospective partner organisations.