Chart of Accounts (part 4 of 4)

Large churches can have a complicated accounting structure but I strongly recommend a simple one. Fortunately all good accounting software allows for flexibility. The greatest area which needs flexibility is in expenses. For instance, some churches have large children’s departments with budgets for the different age levels (preschool and children) or even further sub-groupings (infant, preschool, early elementary, elementary, and middle school, and high school).


Some churches have even further needs for classification because they are multisite churches. For instance, they may want to track expenses across campuses for each classification (how much did we spend on craft supplies for our children across all campuses?) but also expenses within a campus (how much did we spend all the preschool program at campus X?).


This can be accomplished by adding a three digit department number at the front of the five digit accounting number. The accounting department can do an inquiry to get the financial info requested for each campus and/or budget line. Multisite accounting can be as simple as assigning a department number to a campus so that inquiries are made easier.


The critical path is to assign account and department/multisite numbers in a logical pattern which later makes it easy to retrieve data. If there isn’t a good pattern, then getting information will be difficult and that works against what you’re trying to accomplish: getting financial data to help you make better financial decisions.


Lead On!