August 12, 2020 – Cleveland Music Foundation, a nonprofit organization that runs the GRAMMY Museum® Mississippi, has achieved impressive benefits by implementing Sage Intacct cloud accounting software. The system’s robust financial management capabilities laid the groundwork for a modern back-office that could effortlessly manage the new music museum’s diverse income streams. With Sage Intacct, the organization’s finance team increased its efficiency 30 percent and gained visibility that helped grow facility rental profits 64 percent—even as museum admissions doubled and grant funding quadrupled in 2019.
Located near the birthplace of American music, the museum’s mission is to educate and inspire the next generation of music innovators through interactive exhibits, public events, and education programs. After raising over $20 million to build the museum in 2016, the Cleveland Music Foundation needed to graduate from Intuit QuickBooks to an audit-ready solution that could report on key metrics including membership dues, program fees, general admissions, gift shop proceeds, facility rentals, sponsorships, a local tourism tax, multiple grants, and donations. “We chose Sage Intacct’s award-winning platform over Oracle NetSuite, Microsoft Dynamics, and Blackbaud Financial Edge because it was the easiest to use, and every accountant and auditor we talked with absolutely loved the system,” said Chace Holland, director of programming and business operations at GRAMMY Museum Mississippi.
By deploying Sage Intacct, the nonprofit quickly established mature financial operations and achieved transparency into initiatives that fuel its educational mission. For example, the foundation:
● Scaled its back-office processes to better increase flexibility: Prior to the onset of COVID-19, the museum was able to easily scale to handle a four-fold increase in grant funding and admission rates that were doubling. The museum leveraged Sage Intacct to establish all of its accounting processes from ground zero, including purchasing and accounts payable, order entry, accounts receivable, bank reconciliations, cash flow management, and report preparation. Going forward, this will provide automation and best practices that are light years ahead of similar early-stage companies and offer added flexibility as the museum navigates the pandemic.
● Increased efficiency 30 percent across daily bookkeeping, monthly reporting, and grant accounting: With streamlined workflows, Sage Intacct helps the finance team keep up with its transactional and reporting needs across several income streams. For example, by applying contextual dimensions to every entry, the software captures spending on grant projects automatically, so the foundation can show each grantor where their restricted and unrestricted funding goes.
● Slashed monthly close and audit cycles: Using Sage Intacct, it takes the team 75 percent less time to close the books, and their reporting is 20 percent faster. The system’s sophisticated internal controls and read-only access options also help the organization maintain high accounting standards, so it easily passes all annual state and federal audits in under half the time.
● Gained priceless visibility that led to a 64 percent boost in facility rental profits: Sage Intacct’s personalized dashboards provide a comprehensive view of key performance indicators. Holland said, “We make better business decisions on a daily basis because Sage Intacct gives us insight to determine the optimal staffing and programming levels for the museum. For example, this helped us decide when and where to add event coordinator hours for our facility rental department—a move that in 2019 grew rentals by 56 percent, with a profitability increase of 64 percent.”
“With Sage Intacct’s visual reports, dashboards, and trend indicators, we can easily see all our revenue sources and understand the differences between them, so that we allocate resources thoughtfully,” said Holland. “Standard reports straight from the system show which programs are making or losing money, which has been very beneficial in planning how we can reach our goals while maintaining healthy financials.”
For more information on how the Cleveland Music Foundation benefits from the use of Sage Intacct, read the full case study here.