Nonprofit News

Q&A Time | Bender JCC Greater Washington talks about the Microix Budget Module

Microix Budget ModuleThe Microix Budget Module integrates seamlessly with your MIP Fund Accounting system and provides advanced budgeting features such as:

  • Multi-level approval processes
  • View only access for executives
  • Variable budget periods
  • Budget by job position
  • Open job position budgeting
  • Pull distribution codes from MIP or create new ones
  • Access to up to 5 historical years
  • Budget on historical percentage actuals
  • Audit trail for each worksheet
  • Automatic email alerts

Soft Trac already has existing customers successfully using the Microix Budget Module with their MIP software. Today we are going to profile one of Soft Trac's MIP Fund Accounting customers and a happy Microix Budget user.

Bender JCC of Greater Washington's (formerly Jewish Community Center Greater Washington) › mission reads:

"For over 100 years, the Bender JCC of Greater Washington has been committed to a single mission: promoting and creating Jewish continuity, identity, and community in an atmosphere of warmth and meaning.”

They recently implemented the Microix Budget Module.  We talked with Ruth Carski who had been using Abila MIP Fund Accounting since 1992! She was the Chief Financial Officer at Bender JCC of Greater Washington during the Microix project, and the person who oversaw their Microix Budget Module project.

1. What prompted you to invest in the Microix Budget Module?   

Our budgeting process is very granular.  Our overall budget is about $10.5 million and is comprised of 100 individual budgets. MIP’s budgeting module simply did not serve our needs.  We were looking for an alternative to developing budgets via Excel spreadsheets then manually entering the budget into MIP or importing the budgets and adjusting the spread based upon historical results. This was a very labor intensive process for our organization.

  1. How many people at your organization use Microix Budgeting and what are their roles in the budgeting process?

34 employees have Microix logins. Their roles range from program level requesters to division head approval, followed by Chief Officer approval and accounting office approval and import into MIP. 

  1. Do all users have the same level of access to budgets or do some have only limited access?

Access to Microix is dependent upon one’s role within the organization. Program Directors and Supervisors were setup as budget requesters meaning they create budgets for their programs.  Division heads may also prepare certain budgets such as the administration budget for their overall division and approve the budgets prepared by their direct report employees. Chief Officers of the organization may create certain budgets and approve budgets prepared by their division heads, directors or supervisors.  Within the accounting department 2 other employees have the rights to review budgets approved by our Chief Officers and import the budgets into MIP. Our CEO has the ability to view all budgets.

  1. How is your MIP Chart of Accounts integrated with your budgets? 

The integration of our Chart of Accounts is perfect. We were able to budget each program based upon the actual COA level used to record actual transactions throughout the year. I have been looking for a budget tool with this capability since I first started using MIP in 1992. 

  1. How does the module assist your organization when budgeting for personnel? 

The salary worksheet was easy for our Human Resources Director to prepare. She was able to input the cost of our benefits and taxes into a master table then apply that information to each benefit eligible employee. Within Microix she was able to set the employee’s allocation to multiple programs if applicable. When the taxes and benefits were processed, those items followed the employee’s allocation. This was a major timesaver. Separately, other budget requesters were able to budget their session workers such as personal trainers and teachers.

  1. Do you use allocations in your budgets and, if so, how?  

We use allocations extensively throughout our organization. During the year, we issue both direct and indirect  reports to our Board of Directors. Being able to import our budget based upon the allocation codes used during the year for actual expenses is a great benefit to us.

  1. Is there a particular field, function or annotation that you have found especially useful in the Microix Budget Module?

The narrative detail option is an excellent tool for the review process. Budgeting is much more than just putting numbers on paper. We required staff to enter narrative detail for their budget requests. The budget approvers were able to compare the narratives to the organization’s strategic goals and objectives for the coming year.

  1. You have used several other budget modules with MIP.  What is the biggest value you found by using the Microix Budget Module? 

The ability to export prior year actual results and budgets and refresh the data monthly is an invaluable tool during the budgeting process. We especially liked the current year projection option. 

  1. Is there anything you don’t like about the software? 

I am still trying to figure out how to extract data into meaningful reports for our Board of Directors and Chief Officers. For example, I would like to provide our Chief Marketing Officer with the narrative marketing detail in each of our 100 program budgets. So far, the best I can do is generate a report by program, export it to Excel, delete the non-marketing narratives then append the next budget. I’ve been told Microix may be receptive to discussing my request. I just need to follow up with them.

  1. Would you recommend the Microix Budget Module to other MIP users and why?

Definitely!  The Microix Budget Module is everything we were looking for in a robust budgeting tool.  The learning curve for our budget requesters was quick and easy. The requesters and budget approvers were able to view historical data and prepare detailed budgets in one tool. The interface between Microix and MIP is fantastic. The ability to import the new budget based upon prior year historical percentages or actuals is a tremendous time saver.

Please visit our webiste, if you would like to learn more about Abila MIP Fund Accounting › and Microix Budget Module ›. And, if you'd like assistnace reviewing the Microix Budget Module, please Contact Us!

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Soft Trac is a woman-owned business and accomplished team of nonprofit software consultants. We believe in making nonprofits "do good" better.