Money & Mission
Volume VI, Issue 4 - November 18, 2015
The October 15 issue of Salvationist included an article entitled “Talking to Canadians” which reported on a survey of 1,002 Canadians from across the country, conducted by the Vision Critical research firm. The article summarized an interview with Andrew Grenville, chief research officer at Vision Critical, and a member of the Army’s National Advisory Board.
Two statistics really impressed me:
- 84% of those surveyed said they know enough about the Army to be able to rate us. Grenville comments “That’s huge because there are not many organizations or brands that 84% of Canadians would say they could rate.”
- 30% have donated to the Army in the past year – almost 10 million people. To quote Grenville again “Most people are not donating very much and they’re donating through the kettles. So the kettles are the perfect outreach platform, as a way to help people connect to the Army. They make the Army very visible, and it’s a chance for people to say, ‘I think you guys are doing a great job. Here’s some money to keep doing what you are doing.’ So the kettle campaign has an impact on the public that’s far greater than just the amount of money that’s raised.”
If you are attending a kettle this month, please remember that the Army’s reputation depends on the image projected by you and thousands of others from Bonavista to Vancouver Island. So, even if your feet hurt or your back aches, try to have a smile and cheery greeting for all, including those who do not donate, and perhaps especially those who might make a disparaging comment about the Army. Think of what General Booth would have done - or even better, what Jesus would do.
Christmas Kettles - Keeping Our People and Our Funds Safe
With the Christmas kettles season now upon us, we thought it timely to remind you of the procedures that help to safeguard our workers and the donated funds:
- Ensure that every kettle worker has a contact number to call if difficulties are encountered.
- Secure the kettle bubble to the stand so that no one can grab it and run.
- Lock the two halves of the bubble with a padlock; keep the key on Army property, and don’t open the bubble until back there.
- Never leave a kettle unattended; if workers are scheduled to be on duty for a long time, arrange for periodic relief.
- If a donor can’t reach the bubble and asks the worker to make the deposit, the worker should do so right away, while the donor is there.
- Make sure that the collection, transportation and delivery of kettles is done by two persons.
- Consider using a security service for making large bank deposits.
- Ensure that the kettles are opened and counted by two unrelated persons, on Army property; the totals should be recorded and signed by those counting.
- Keep funds in a safe until they can be counted and deposited; deposits should be made no later than the next business day.
Agresso Implementation Tip #2
When an invoice is registered in Agresso, it is automatically assigned a transaction number. For each transaction there are one or more tasks. A task is assigned for each line of coding required for a transaction. If a transaction is allocated to different departments or accounts, a coding line is required for each allocation, resulting in multiple tasks.
Let’s take the example of a Bell Canada invoice to a ministry unit where the charge is to be split between Corps (Department 2000) and Community and Family Services (Department 3000). Agresso will assign one transaction number, but two tasks are sent to the reviewer and approver for action. Similarly, an invoice to the same unit from Home Depot might contain items for Program Supplies (Account 72009) and Office Equipment and Furnishings (Account 73019); both coding lines will share the same transaction number but there will be two separate tasks.
If the tasks were created but not approved before 8.00 pm Eastern Standard Time on the same day, an e-mail notification is automatically sent to the owner(s) of the tasks.
In the above examples, a user would see four tasks for action in his/her task list - two for Bell Canada and two for Home Depot. When task(s) are brought up for review or approval, the system will group tasks belonging to the same transaction together and the user will see only two transactions on the approval screen, each with two lines of coding.
There are two approval modes - Simple and Advanced. Simple mode allows you to approve or reject all lines of the transaction with the click of a single button. Advanced mode requires you to approve or reject each line of the transaction separately. We recommend using the Simple mode since, with the Advanced mode, a transaction cannot be completed and posted until all lines of the transaction are approved. If additional lines of coding for the invoice are required, users will need to select the Advanced mode to enable the Split row function.
When the sum of all tasks from the transaction does not equal the “To be approved” amount in the supplier invoice information, wait 15 minutes and see if the “trailing tasks” catches up to present a complete transaction. If the sum of all tasks still does not equal the “To be approved” amount, reject the transaction with the comment “Transaction is incomplete”. Finance staff will investigate and send back the complete transaction and the related tasks for approval.
Travel and Expense Management System (TEM)
This article is the third of a series covering different aspects of TEM. It summarizes the role of approvers.
Role of Approver:
Within TEM, a user with approver access can approve claims of other users to whom they have been assigned approval rights. There are three ways a user can be assigned claims to approve.
- They are the mandatory approver for a responsibility centre or THQ department.
- They are the approver for a group of employees who belong to an employee group.
- They are a backup approver for one of the above types of approvers.
Approvers in the first two groups will receive a daily e-mail if they have claims to approve. The e-mail provides a direct link to the TEM log-in page. Back-up approvers need to log in to TEM to determine whether they have invoices to approve.
Upon log-in to TEM, there is a message and link to expenses awaiting approval. Back-up approvers have a separate link for pending items to approve as a back-up approver.
Approvers can scroll through the expenses pending approval and can approve or reject the claims, but cannot change them. All rejections must have an explanatory note with the reason.
Some quick tips:
- Always activate a back-up approver with a start and end date before going on holidays or otherwise being unavailable to approve claims.
- Make sure that your back up is aware of the need to log in to TEM to check for items to approve (i.e. there will be no notification e-mail).
- If you are a back-up approver, log in regularly to see if invoices are pending approval.
- Always give a clear reason and action required on rejection of claims.
- Deal with expenses pending approval quickly.
- Check the attachment to ensure it is valid and supports the claim.
- Review the appropriateness of the financial coding (e.g. does it belong to this ministry unit?).
Money & Mission Editorial Team
Design Editor & Production Manager:
The Salvation Army Translation Department