How one NGO is using technology to drive transformation and increase program impact and transparency
Posted by Emma Keates
Watch the video to hear how Heifer International is using centralized best-in-class enterprise technology from Unit4 to diversify revenue and to maximize international program impact.
Heifer International is a global non-profit whose mission is to help end world hunger and poverty while caring for the earth through self-reliance and sustainable intervention strategies. It currently serves 25 countries with 1200 employees, and this year celebrates 75 years of operations.
Before investing in Unit4 Business World, the organization was struggling to keep up with the speed of change that was happening in the world. Its financial visibility was poor with data stored in country offices and financial consolidation was a manual process. Donors, private foundations, other NGOs, government, and communities required more detailed and frequent reports.
Heifer realized it had to do something about its inability to scale-up and increase the impact of its projects more quickly, while improving transparency and reducing G&A costs. They chose to build an infrastructure of best in class systems to support growth, diversification of revenue, and increase scale of program impact. Its global systems had to support large-scale projects and meet the demands of accountability and transparency required by sophisticated donors.
Unit4’s Business World sits at the heart of Heifers enterprise systems architecture. It is supporting Heifer to diversify revenue, maximize program impact and ensure more transparency. They are benefiting from access to real-time data across all operations through central administration, which has replaced five different systems and pockets of data that made it impossible to consolidate in an insightful way. It used to take 15 staff around 2 months to complete a financial consolidation. Now consolidation is managed by one person every month across all international offices. Business World brings everything together, so Heifer can see their program impact and where adjustments should be made in real-time.
For any non-profit, realizing efficiencies and saving money is vital. Heifer can apply these savings directly to its projects and mission. Its design means the powerful system can be deployed as building blocks, so Heifer remains agile and responsive to change, using it to their best advantage.
Having the right systems in place has made an impact on Heifer that's recognized, sustainable and meaningful. It’s a balancing act for Non-Profits. Every dollar counts, and Heifer wants to focus spend on its charitable work and save lives. Investing in a modern ERP solution has proven to save time and money.