Rock Brook Church’s Revenue Increases 43% After EMK Implements AccuFund
From a humble beginning in 1997 to a thriving congregation, more than 20 years later Rock Brook Church is built on helping people come to salvation and live out God’s purpose for their lives. The church itself provides several different purpose-driven departments where approximately 400 people volunteer on a regular basis. To ensure they were meeting the needs of this purpose-driven approach in the right way, Rock Brook needed a more accurate and modern finance and reporting system. They found their financial salvation in EMK, Inc. and AccuFund.
As a brand new church, Rock Brook started with a basic, simple accounting system used for home and small businesses.
“We were—and still are—a growing congregation. By 2010, we had grown from 92 people to about 750. I knew that by the time we reached 1,000 congregants we’d need professional quality software systems in place to manage running the church.”Bob Terry, Administrative Pastor at Rock Brook Church.
For Rock Brook and Bob, it came down to the ability to better manage the departments of the church to make sure money was going where it was supposed to and being used responsibly to achieve the outlined purposes.
“We’re a purpose-driven church with five specific purposes. But with our old system, it was difficult to identify what money we were spending on which purpose,” Bob recalled. “We had line items for each of the five purposes but not enough detail to have clarity.”
With only a vague idea of how much was being spent in each area, the church experienced substantial difficulty in creating and managing budgets. Bob knew it was time for something new.
“I’m part of a national church administrator group,” he said, “so I was able to get a lot of information from real users about different systems.”
After comparing at least a dozen systems, Rock Brook noted the system AccuFund continued to float to the top of the pile in terms of the features they both needed and wanted.
Bob and his administrative assistant, Kathy Ferro, knew they had to completely revamp their chart of accounts. “Accounting systems are complex. Elisa had the knowledge we needed to set up AccuFund so it would operate the way we needed it to.”
With their new AccuFund system, Bob and Kathy were able to set up each of the purpose-driven departments individually and apply separate budget account categories. “Now each department lead can develop their own budget, and we can discuss their individual budget without having them see what everyone else was doing.”
As soon as Rock Brook Church decided to implement AccuFund, they were connected to EMK, Inc. for consulting and implementation. “We needed an expert in accounting and software to help us and EMK was our answer,” Bob recalled. “Elisa [Kearney] got us up and running with the software and it was her financial expertise that made a huge difference. I have a financial background, but I’m not an accountant, so I was not coming from the perspective of someone who’s intimately knowledgeable about accounting systems. EMK bridged the gap between the software and our accounting processes that ultimately lead to a successful implementation.”
AccuFund isn’t only helping with the present and future planning. It’s also enabling Rock Brook Church to balance past records. “Right now, our CPA is doing an audit of earlier years,” Bob said, “which means that some adjustments have to be made in the system in order to balance AccuFund records with what the CPA’s records are.” Leveraging both Kearney’s expertise and AccuFund’s capabilities, Rock Brook Church is now able to settle the adjustments and bring the information back together.
Perhaps what most excites Bob and his team about AccuFund is its ability to help the church align funds with the founding mission of the church to ensure money is going to the right purpose. “It’s really aligned the mission of the church so that the money supports the mission,” Bob agreed.
Some of the successes Rock Brook Church has experienced since implementing AccuFund include:
- Specially designed reports for the church’s unique reporting needs
- Models and formats for department heads to formulate budgets and project ahead
- Improved accuracy of accounting information
- Easier budget development process
Since implementing AccuFund, Rock Brook Church’s total revenue increased by 43%.
“AccuFund has become a great management tool for Rock Brook Church,” Bob concluded. “It’s obviously going to be able to grow with us for many, many years.”