Grantmakers: Here’s Your Year-End Checklist! 8781

Grantmakers: Here’s Your Year-End Checklist!


Making a list and checking it twice? If you’re like me, you’re making a list of your holiday to-do’s. Here’s a list I’ve made for our community: The all-important Blackbaud Grantmaking™ Year-End Checklist.

Full disclosure, I’m a compulsive list-maker, much to the dismay of my family and friends. Getting organized and checking items off my to-do list gives me a sense of accomplishment and helps me sleep at night. So, for those of you with the same affliction (as well as those who scoff at list-making!), here are our recommendations for powering through your to-do list so you're set up for success in the new year.
  • Get Organized: Who Needs What?
Before you dive in, know what you need and who needs it. Your Tax Department may require a 990 report for the Schedule of Appropriations and Payments. Is your board meeting to wrap-up the year? They may want a final grant payout list in the board book. What about your Program Officers? They might want to see a list of upcoming or overdue requirements and send reminder emails to grantees. Reaching out to your partners will keep you on track when you’re ready to run your year-end reports.
  • Establish Your Baseline Numbers
Keeping good records is the key to data integrity. Making graphs and charts in your year-end dashboard will help you to track how your records change year to year. What kind of baseline reporting do you track? Number of organizations, requests and other record types can all be key indicators of your database integrity.
Tip: To find the number of organizations in Grantmaking:
  1. In the Search bar, select Organizations
  2. Type % in the search field
  3. Click Enter to run the search
  4. Record the number of Organizations returned
This can be repeated for any record type.
  • Cleanup
No matter how diligent you are about your records, there are always some pesky duplicates that sneak into your database. Fortunately, Grantmaking has automated duplicate reports that you can run to de-dupe those stray records.
Tip: Duplicate reports are available in the Reports library: Duplicate Organizations (by Name); Duplicate Contacts (by Last Name); Duplicate Contacts (by Social Security Number).
Another important year-end cleanup task is to run the Batch Tax Status Verify feature in Grantmaking to search for organizations that are missing tax status or ID. You can use the links to GuideStar, Internal Revenue Service, or Canada Revenue Service to verify an organization's tax exemption status.
Another record type to clean up is Requests; look for missing codes or grants with unscheduled balances. Cleaning up your records will make your year-end reports and dashboards even more reliable and give you a great start to the new year.
  • Close-Out
Are you in the habit of closing out open grants or requirements that have already been fulfilled, or marking payments as paid? You can close multiple “open” grants that have all payments and requirements satisfied, as well as identify “unpaid” balances and ensure that they are marked paid as appropriate. Do you have outdated pending requests clogging up your database? Something that could have been entered as a placeholder by your Program Officers? Check with your team to determine whether the request is valid, then approve or decline the record. These final steps can be overlooked so it’s a good idea to check them periodically; what better time than at year-end?
  • Get Ready for Next Year
Time to update those dashboards and prepare the grant budget for next year! Ensure that your dashboards are current and contain all the information they need. If you use the Grantmaking Budget Module you can keep track of your organization’s pre-planned giving budget at the beginning of each year, and then track your actual giving and payments against this budget as the year progresses.
Tip: To prepare your new budget year:
1: Plan your budget
2: Create a new budget year
3: Allocate funds
4: Open the budget year
Now that your new budget year is open, you can resolve all payments against the budget. At the end of the fiscal year, once your payout for the year is complete, you can close the Annual Budget.

For more year-end checklist tips and a how-to demo, go to the Grantmaking On-Demand Resource Library to access the video Complete Your Grantmaking Year-End Checklist.

Happy Year-End Check-Listing! Please comment on this blog to share your year-end checklist items with our community members!
Kathleen Ward
Principal Customer Success Manager, Foundations

Come say hi and connect with me on my community profile!
News Blackbaud Grantmaking™ Blog 12/15/2022 12:30pm EST

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