On Friday, April 26th the Human Impacts Institute’s Executive Director and Program Coordinator participated in a Citi Skills Marathon, facilitated by the Taproot Foundation. The “marathon” is a daylong pro bono meeting between non-profit organizations and Citi executives to co-develop critical capacity building needs for the non-profit while also exposing Citi executives to non-profit operations. HII was honored to be chosen for the Marathon amongst other groups such as National Resource Defense Council and theLower East Side Ecology Center.
Before the Marathon day arrived, HII had numerous phone calls with Citi and Taproot to discuss their desired accomplishments for the event. The group established a list of project completion criteria that they hoped Citi executives could help them fulfill by the end of the Marathon. These were to:
· Assess current financial management tools and procedures
· Make a set of recommendations for the ideal financial management tools, infrastructure and processes needed to support long-term organizational growth and reporting
· Create a user-friendly budget model to help the organization:
-Track revenues, expenditures and overall progress against the budget
-Manage and project organizational cash flow
After 8 hours of working with Citi executives and Taproot staff that Friday, HII left gaining the knowledge and tools they need to continue growing the organization. This included: a revised timesheet for employees, interns, and volunteers to help track what program areas they are spending most of their time on throughout the year; a revamped annual budget spreadsheet; and a spreadsheet for future income and expense projections. HII’s Program Coordinator explained, “Financial assessment, annual projections, budgeting…these are the valuable tools that non-profits and start-ups need from the corporate sector but often cannot afford. That is one of the many reasons HII was excited to be part of this Citi Marathon.” HII is eager to put these spreadsheets and words of advice to good use and looks forward to partnering with Citibank and Taproot in the future.
By Melissa Mitchell, Program Coordinator, Human Impacts Institute