Hampshire Cultural Trust Implements AccountsIQ Across Both Trust and Trading Entities
Hampshire Cultural Trust (HCT) was formed when two Councils decentralised Hampshire’s museums and cultural centres. Previously posting its financial transactions to the Councils’ centralised SAP system, the newly-formed Trust needed to find an affordable solution which could handle its complex accounting needs across 23 locations, consolidate two legal entities and produce sector-compliant and meaningful reports from Head Office. With the help of advisors BDO, the Trust chose Cloud accounting and consolidation software AccountsIQ to handle accounting across the estate which comprises 23 museums and art centres.
HCT’s Director of Finance and Resources, Charlie Inigo-Jones, joined the Trust in 2016. Charlie says, “In 2015 the Trust needed to set up its own accounting system very quickly. Under my predecessor, we simply took AccountsIQ out of the box, imported the general ledger and cost centres from the Council’s system, and started to process its own transactions. That was it! We have since set up monthly accounts reconciliation and reporting processes, and are now beginning to explore the software’s full potential using multi-dimensional coding to meet our reporting needs.”
Working with AccountsIQ’s charity implementation team, Hampshire Cultural Trust’s project consists of two phases: designing and implementing the system infrastructure and reporting across their 23 locations and at Head Office; and completing a number of integration projects with ticketing, EPOS, payroll and other systems which will bring consistency and efficiencies across the group.
Phase I: Reporting Across the Trust
As well as 23 locations, the Trust has two separate legal entities, and a number of restricted or programme-based funds which need to be separately accounted for and reported. Each transaction needs to be posted to the correct location, entity, and fund.
AccountsIQ has enormous potential to produce Management Information Reports. In order for us to create those automated reporting packs and make dashboards meaningful, we have been working with AccountsIQ’s very flexible coding structure to ensure it is optimised for our purposes. The ability to define user access and create custom reports will allow us to cascade reporting throughout the Trust in a relevant way. Charlie Inigo-Jones
AccountsIQ is particularly suited to supporting a charity’s need to account for restricted funds. Charlie says, “AccountsIQ solves the accounting for restricted funds problem by using a third dimension of coding. The use of project codes make the information easy to grab. We could actually set up more layers of coding to extract sub-project information if we needed to.”
Phase II: Integration and Automation
Many locations across the estate sell entry or event tickets and some incorporate retail outlets and cafes. HCT has installed two systems on a trial basis which will provide automated ticketing and Electronic Point of Sale (EPOS).
Charlie says, “Introducing ticketing and EPOS systems will help us implement codes at the point of sale, so the system captures what it is we have sold, what for, and the other information we require in order to provide meaningful retail management reporting. Integration with AccountsIQ will fully automate the process of posting sales from both retail sales systems, and help us to transform our financial and stock control processes. It will be a massive win when data from each venue can be reconciled to the tills, the bank and amounts received from card payments – all on a daily basis and with clearly defined reporting.”
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