Our latest article, published in the official Xero Magazine.
“There is no money to be made in charities.” “Working with charities is too difficult.”
These few sentiments we hear regularly from accountants and business consultants. While I agree it sometimes can be difficult working with volunteer’s availability, the complexities of charity work and regulations but the rewards by far outweigh the difficulties…
The charity sector is one of the fastest growing sectors in the world. More and more charities, Business for Purpose or For Social Enterprises are being started daily. Even for a small country like New Zealand with 4.7 million population there are over 27,638 charities. That’s about 1 charity for every 170 people. Contributing $6 billion to the economy (NZ statistics June 2016). There are more than 185,000 registered charities in England and Wales and the number is rising by 5,000 a year. There are probably more than twice that number of unregistered charities bring the total to more like 400,000.
Why is the charity sector growing?
With technology, information and social media, world situations are often reported before news agencies have the opportunity to investigate. Everyone from world leaders to children, in remote parts of the world are posting their thoughts, ideas, and the challenges they are currently facing. Thus, we are more aware.
More than ever before, today’s generation do not want to just work and earn as their parents did but they want to contribute to society, save the planet, and have a good work life balance. They are looking beyond to the bigger picture: seeing massive inequality, homelessness, rising population, climate change, and lack of healthcare, and wanting to bring change.
Ethics, purpose and meaning are coming first.
New types of business are emerging. We no longer have Not for Profit and For Profit businesses but also Business for Purpose and Social Enterprise. Businesses looking past profits to how they impact people through their products and services will ultimately be winning because customers select these types of businesses to purchase from and work with.
Charities need you!
Whilst it is easier for charities to keep good financial record through software like Xero, and charity focused apps like infoodle, they need passionate and skilled accountants and business managers to help them navigate the vast number of regulations. Financial professionals who work in the charity sector claim that job satisfaction, a good work life balance and the chance to give something back to society are just a few of the many perks that keep them motivated and happy in their roles. The sector offers a huge variety of organisations with different working environments, some of which can be just as demanding and fast paced as the commercial sector.
Apps like infoodle provide tools to help you to administrate the charity you work with.