FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

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FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

Introduction

The purpose of these policies is to establish guidelines for developing financial goals and objectives, making financial decisions, reporting the financial status of the Nigeria Network of NGOs, and managing the Organisation’s funds.


2. FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITIES

It is the responsibility of the Board of Directors to formulate financial policies and review operations and activities on a periodic basis.

The Board delegates this oversight responsibility to the Treasurer of the Board and the Finance Committee of which the Treasurer is the Chair. This responsibility is shared through delegation with the Nigeria Network of NGOs Executive Director and the Head of Finance.

The Nigeria Network of NGOs Executive Director acts as the primary fiscal agent, implementing all financial policies and procedures. NNNGO Executive Director, with oversight of The Finance Committee is responsible for the coordination of the following: Annual budget presentation, management of the Endowment and other fund investments, selection of the outside auditors, and approving revenue and expenditure objectives in accordance with the Board approved long-term plans.

The Head of Finance with oversight by the Finance Committee has the day-to-day operations responsibility for managing NNNGO funds, ensuring the accuracy of the accounting records, internal controls, financial objectives and policies, financial statement preparation, and bank reconciliation review and approval.

The Accountant is directly supervised by the Head of Finance and is responsible for the preparation of the Chart of Accounts, Reporting Formats, Accounts Payable Processing, Payroll input and Payroll processing, Cash Receipts input, Journal Entries for General Ledger, Form reporting, as well as Bank Reconciliations.


3. CONFLICT OF INTEREST POLICY

Members of the Board of Directors are prohibited from activities that might present conflicts of interest. The powers of directorship may not be used to personally benefit the Director at the corporation’s expense. If a Director has a financial interest in a corporate transaction, the Director must fully disclose the interest and abstain from voting. Loans to Directors are prohibited. (See NNNGO Conflict of Interest Policy)


4. BUDGETING PROCESS (The entire board must approve the budget)

The Nigeria Network of NGO’s Executive Director, the Head of Finance, and the Treasurer shall be responsible for presenting to the Finance Committee and other Board Committees an annual operating budget draft sixty (60) days prior to the end of the fiscal year and thirty (30) days prior to its submission to the Board of Directors.

The Finance Committee shall review and approve the recommended fiscal year budget revenues, expenditures and cash flow, and submit it for approval to the Board of Directors. The budget shall contain revenues and expenses forecasted by month. A chart describing monthly cash flow shall be included.


5. FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

The Nigeria Network of NGO’s financial statements shall be prepared on an accrual basis in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standard (“IFRS”) or the more recent approved accounting FIRS. The presentation of the Financial Statements shall follow the recommendation of the Financial Accounting Standards No. 117, “Financial Statements of Not-For-Profit Organizations” (SFAS No. 117).

Under GAAP, net assets and revenues, expenses, gains, and losses are classified based on the existence or absence of donor-imposed restrictions. Accordingly, the net assets of the agency and changes shall be classified as unrestricted, temporarily restricted and permanently restricted.(re-work)

Separate from Unrestricted Funds, resources for various purposes are classified for accounting and maintained for each fund. Several funds are in place for this purpose including but not limited to: Endowment Fund, Restricted Funds, Cash Management Fund, Property and Equipment Fund, etc.

The Head of Finance shall prepare and present Monthly Financial Statements in a format approved by the NNNGO Executive Director and Finance Committee. The statements shall be presented to NNNGO Executive Director, senior management, and the Finance Committee for review.


6. CASH FUND

A cash fund of one-quarter to one-third of NNNGO’s annual operating expenses shall be maintained. When the fund balance falls below this minimum, the Finance Committee and the Board shall develop a plan and budget for rebuilding it. The Head of Finance is saddle with task of holding cash to meet travel expenses or other cost associated with traveling outside and within work station depending on the existing circumstances.


7. AUDIT

The Nigeria Network of NGOs will have an audit of its financial statements annually, within 4 months of the end of each the fiscal year. The audit shall be completed by a firm of Independent Certified Public Accountants. NNNGO Executive Director and the Head of Finance shall have direct responsibility in overseeing the implementation of the Annual Financial Audit. The Audit Committee shall have board oversight. In no cases shall the number of Board Members holding seats on the Audit Committee be less than the number of agency staff and management.

The Nigeria Network of NGOs Executive Director and the Head of Finance shall recommend to the Audit Committee for approval, the selection of a firm to perform the annual audit. In addition, the Audit Committee shall assist when necessary in the audit preparation, and report the final results to the Board of Directors. A representative of the audit firm shall be invited to attend the annual presentation to the Audit Committee, and shall be required to make a presentation to the Board if the audit report is other than unqualified, or if the auditor report material weaknesses in internal controls or reportable conditions.

The audited account must be reviewed by the Head of Finance and the NNNGO’s Executive Director, and the Finance committee before submission to the appropriate regulatory bodies.


8. REVENUE AND INCOME PROCEDURES

The Nigeria Network of NGOs Executive Director and the Head of Finance, develops and proposes revenue goals and objectives and discuss them with member staff prior to Board discussion and approval.

All contributions shall be recorded in accordance with IFRS (see more involve), with specific attention to standards FASB 116 and 117. Contributions are recorded as pledged or received in accordance with FASB 116, and must be credited to the appropriate revenue lines as presented in the annual budget and coded with the appropriate account number as designated in the Organisation’s Chart of Accounts.


9. RECORDING RECEIPTS

The following procedures for cash received through the mail or given to a staff person shall be in place: Mail should be opened by a staff person that is not involved in the accounting function. All checks shall be endorsed with the NNNGO’s official stamp. All cash and checks received through the mail shall be forwarded to the designated staff in the Fund Development Department, or other staff not involved in the accounting function. This person records all checks and cash by date, name of company or individual, designation, and amount.

After recording checks, or cash, they are forwarded to the accountant who records it for accounting purposes. An individual deposit ticket shall be prepared with triplicate copies, bearing a different designation of each account. That record shall include date of deposit, name of sender, amount, and designation. A copy of the bank deposit slip is retained in chronological order with copies of the deposited checks. All cash and checks shall be deposited the same business day if possible, and no later than the next business day into the NNNGO’s Bank Account. The same procedures followed for cash receipts shall be followed when monies are received by employees as contributions for special events.

Gifts received electronically, such as stock transfers or on-line contributions should be properly recorded by a staff person in the Fund Development department, and by the Accountant. Transactions should be periodically rechecked by the Head of Finance.

The Accountant shall make the appropriate entries in the General Ledger books. The Accountant shall reconcile all logs of incoming cash/checks with the deposit slips, and with the record of receipts maintained by the Fund Development organization.


10. RECEIPTS TO DONORS

The Vice President of Fund Development shall ensure that all donors and contributors shall receive proper acknowledgement of their contributions in accordance with appropriate regulatory Guidelines.


11. EXPENDITURE PROCEDURES

All expenditures shall be approved by the Nigeria Network of NGOs Executive Director or a Vice President. All expenditures shall be coded by account number using NNNGO’s Chart of Accounts. The Accountant maintains standard accounting records containing all aspects of the NNNGO’s financial operations. They include but are not limited to: A general ledger, a check register, and a payroll register.

Invoices shall be approved by either the Organisation’s Executive Director or a Vice President. Following the review and approval, check payment vouchers shall be prepared and the invoices shall be distributed to NNNGO’s Accountant for check payment preparation. Upon payment of a bill, a copy of the check or duplicate of stub shall be stapled onto the bill and payment date and check number shall be printed on the invoice. The paid invoices shall be filed alphabetically according to company/individual name and shall be kept on a fiscal year basis on file.


12. SIGNATURE POLICY

The Nigeria Network of NGOs Executive Director and the Head of Finance (two signatures) shall unless otherwise decided by the Board, sign all checks, drafts, or orders for payment of money, contracts, and commitments for services issued in the name of NNNGO. In the absence of either individual, the signature of the Chair of the Board must be obtained.The Nigeria Network of NGOs Executive Director and the Head of Finance (two signatures) shall unless otherwise decided by the Board, sign all checks, drafts, or orders for payment of money, contracts, and commitments for services issued in the name of NNNGO. In the absence of either individual, the signature of the Chair of the Board must be obtained.


13. COMPENSATION AND PAYROLL (Important point: Ensure Board approval of ED salary and ranges)

Payroll is executed periodically. Paychecks or direct deposits will be provided to each employee by the Accountant.

Monthly payroll expenses shall be verified by the accountant against payroll reports and direct deposit reports and reconciled with checking account reports.

The compensation of the Organisation’s Executive Director shall be determined by the Board of Directors or their designees and the Executive Director’s compensation is based on a board-approved process that considers comparable data and ED performance. The salaries of all other employees shall be determined by the Organisation Executive Director. Compensation ranges for all staff positions shall be approved by the Organisation’s Executive Director. No employee of the Organisation may be compensated outside of the approved range, without the approval of the Organisation Executive Director.


14. LOCAL TRAVEL AN EXPENSE REIMBURSEMENT

Employees must abide by the Nigeria Network of NGOs Travel and Expense policy. Travel and expense reports for mileage, meals, hotel, supplies, etc., will be maintained by each employee and then submitted to the supervisor for approval and payment on a weekly basis by the Accountant.

Mileage to and from the employee’s residence to the place of work will not be paid by the Organisation. Reimbursements will be based on the travel rate established by the Organisation Executive Director and the Head of Finance and approved through the budgeting process. Travel reimbursement shall not be above IRS Guidelines.

All parking and other expenditure receipts must be attached to the expense voucher as a condition for payment. (See NNNGO Travel Policy)


15. CREDIT CARD EXPENDITURE

The Head of Finance will approve the issuance of a company-issued credit card (if any) for employees who travel frequently. Employees must utilize that card only for business travel. Employees must submit a voucher that explains the business reason for items purchased using the credit card. The direct supervisor must approve the voucher, which is then submitted to the Accountant for recording and reconciliation.


16. PURCHASING

Any expenditure in excess of an amount determined by the Board of Directors for the purchase of a single item should have bids from three (3) suppliers if possible. These bids are reviewed by the Head of Finance and the bid award must be specifically approved in advance by the NNNGO’s Executive Director and the Head of Finance.

Purchase of less than the approved amount may be made at the discretion of the Organisation’s Executive Director or Head of Finance without competitive bids. However, for fixed assets, reasonable diligence should be exercised to comparatively shop for available sources. Any purchase made by a Board member on behalf of NNNGO will require prior approval by the Organisation Executive Director.


17. LEASES AND OTHER CONTRACTUAL AGREEMENTS (Important points: These procedures do not include procedures for building ownership. If the organization owns a building the separate section should be written)


The Nigeria Network of NGOs conducts a major part of its operations from leased facilities. Leases and other contractual agreements are negotiated by the Head of Finance and executed with the approval of NNNGO Executive Director. New leases in excess of an amount determined by the Board of Directors require the approval of the Finance Committee.

The Nigeria Network of NGOs Executive Director and the Head of Finance are authorized to develop and enter into contractual agreements with vendors, bankers, and third parties for the purpose of ensuring NNNGO’s general operations. The Finance Committee shall review such agreements and make recommendations when necessary.


18. NOTES, LOAN, ETC

All notes, loans and other indebtedness to be contracted in the name of the Nigeria Network of NGOs (except open accounts and all other routine banking transactions), shall require the signature of NNNGO Executive Director, unless otherwise specified by the Board or established in the present management policies and procedures. All indebtedness must be approved by the Organisation’s Executive Director.


19. DEEDS, CONVEYANCES, ETC

The Nigeria Network of NGOs Executive Director and the Head of Finance shall execute all Deeds, Conveyances, Mortgages, Leases, Contracts and other instruments in the name of the organisation.


20. BANK ACCOUNTS

The Head of Finance shall maintain and oversee Bank and Investment accounts, and ensure the Organisation’s day-to-day financial operations. Several accounts may be maintained by the organization as follows:

  1. Membership Account

  2. Projects Account

  3. Domiciliary Accounts

These accounts may be changed as NNNGO’s financial conditions and requirements change.


21. CHECKING ACCOUNT

All checks, cash, money orders, and credit card deposits, are reviewed by the Accountant and deposited in the appropriate Accounts. Fund raising events, foundations and corporate donations and miscellaneous contributions, shall be deposited into the accounts. Monies shall be transferred from the Checking account into the Money Market Account or the investment account when necessary, by the Head of Finance. Checks are written weekly to meet obligations, or ongoing operational expenditures.


22. BANK RECONCILIATION

Bank reconciliations shall be completed monthly by the Accountant and cross-referenced with the cash and receipts logs and the monthly Financial Statements. The Financial Statements shall be compiled by the Head of Finance. The Statements shall be then reviewed by NNNGO Executive Director and presented to the Finance Committee.

All Bank Statements, Credit Card Statements, and Endowment Fund Reports will be reconciled every month by the Accountant, and records will be kept in the Finance office.


23. CASH AND CASH EQUIVALENTS

Cash and cash equivalents include all cash balances and highly liquid investments with a maturity of six months or less. The Nigeria Network of NGOs places its temporary cash investments with highly rated financial institutions. The Head of Finance shall closely monitor the balances of the Checking account, Money Market and Certificates of Deposit accounts. At times such investments may be outside of the NDIC insurance limit.


24. PETTY CASH

A petty cash fund provides a systematic method for paying and recording out-of-pocket cash payments too small to be made by check. NNNGO shall maintain a Fifty Thousand naira (#50,000) petty cash fund that is replenished as needed.

The Accountant shall maintain control of, and responsibility for, payments disbursed from the Petty Cash fund; however, amounts should not exceed an amount determined by the Board of Directors for each transaction. The total Fund should not exceed an amount determined by the Board of Directors.


25. INVESTMENTS REPORT AND INVESTMENTS POLICY

Any Investments shall be reported with the monthly financial statements at cost or market value. The Nigeria Network of NGOs Executive Director and Head of Finance, with oversight of the Finance Committee, shall review and determine the general investment strategy for all funds.

The Endowment Fund investment strategy, if any, shall be reviewed and evaluated by the Finance Committee annually, to ensure the portfolio’s proper diversification, security and return on investments.

All financial institutions shall be selected and approved by the Finance & Legal Committee and must have long-term investment rating of A or higher by Standard and Poor’s, or a compatible rating.


26. INSURANCES

Reasonable and adequate coverage will be maintained to protect the Nigeria Network of NGOs interests as well as the Board of Directors and the NNNGO employees. The following insurance policies shall be kept on a yearly basis: Commercial Property Contents and Computer Policy, General and Professional Liability Insurance, Directors and Officers Liability Insurance, Employee’s Dishonesty Bond Insurance, Employee’s Life Insurance, Workers Compensation Insurance, Long-Term Disability Insurance, and Employees Health Insurance.

Insurance Policies shall be carefully reviewed by NNNGO Executive Director and Head of Finance before renewal each year.


27. BONDING

All Nigeria Network of NGOs employees shall be bonded through an Employee’s dishonesty bond policy. In addition, the Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and all Board of Directors shall be bonded by a reputable bonding company. (See NNNGO Anti Fraud Policy)


28. PROPERTY AND EQUIPMENT

Property and equipment shall be stated at historical cost. Depreciation is computed over the estimated useful lives of the assets using the straight-line method. A Depreciation schedule shall be prepared and maintained by NNNGO Head of Finance on an annual basis, taking into consideration the annual equipment inventory. A Property Removal Form shall be required for the removal of the organisation’s property, supplies, and/or equipment from the Agency’s premises. (See NNNGO Record Retention Policy)


29. EQUIPMENTS INSTALLATION

Purchase, installation and maintenance of telephone equipment, telephone lines, office equipment, computer equipment, etc. shall be approved by the Head of Finance after discussion and approval by the Organisation Executive Director. Staff Members and other managers shall be responsible for receiving and supervising the installation of equipment scheduled for their facility or working area, and for maintaining and protecting the equipment installed in their offices. (See NNNGO Asset Management Policy)


30. DONATED MATERIALS AND SERVICES

Donated materials and equipment shall be reflected in the Financial Statements at their estimated values measured on the date of receipt. Volunteers donate time to the NNNGO Program services on an on-going basis. Other volunteers contribute time and services for Administrative or fundraising activities. Such contributed services are generally not reflected in the Organisation’s financial statements, since there is no objective way of assessing their value.


31. CONFIDENTIALITY AND RECORDS SECURITY

Financial records are restricted materials with limited access. Only the Head of Finance and Accountant (or others so authorized) shall have access to financial records (vendor files, checks, journals, payroll, etc.).


32. DOCUMENT RETENTION

Financial documents are retained for a period of time in keeping with Federal law and the recommendations of the appropriate regulatory bodies. (see NNNGO records retention policy)


33. TAX REPORTING

The Organisation is exempt from federal income taxes under Section 23(1) of the CITA Cap C21.LFN 2004 of the FISR Code as amended. Accordingly, no provisions for income taxes shall be reflected in the financial statements.


Appendix

The Organisation is exempt from federal income taxes under Section 23(1) of the CITA Cap C21.LFN 2004 of the FISR Code as amended. Accordingly, no provisions for income taxes shall be reflected in the financial statements.


Effective System of Internal Control

General

Internal control can be divided into two areas: accounting controls and administrative controls. Administrative controls deal with the operations of the business, whereas the accounting controls deal with accounting for such operations. Accounting controls should be designed to achieve the five basic objectives:


Validation

Validation is the examination of documentation by someone with an understanding of the accounting system, for evidence that a recorded transaction actually took place and that it occurred in accordance with the prescribed procedures. As systems grow more sophisticated, validation is a built in component whereby the transactions test themselves against predetermined exceptions.


Accuracy

The accuracy of amounts and account classification is achieved by establishing control tasks to check calculations, extensions, and additions and account classifications. The control objective is to be certain that each transaction is recorded at the correct amount, in the appropriate, account, in the right time period.


Completeness

Completeness of control tasks ensures that all transactions are initially recorded on a control document and accepted for processing once and once only. Completeness controls are needed to ensure proper summarization of information and proper preparation of financial reports. To ensure proper summarization of recorded transactions as well as a final check of completeness, subsidiary ledgers and journals with control accounts need to be maintained.


Maintenance

The objective of the maintenance controls is to monitor accounting records after the entry of transactions to ensure that they continue to reflect accurately the operation of the business. The control system should provide systematic responses to errors when they occur, to changed conditions, and to new type of transactions. The maintenance function should be accomplished principally by the operation of the system itself. Control maintenance policies require procedures, decisions, documentation, and subsequent review by a responsible authorized individual. Disciplinary control tasks, such as supervision and segregation of duties, should ensure that the internal control system is operating as planned.


Physical Security

It is important in all business organizations that the assets are adequately protected. Physical security of assets requires that access to assets be limited to authorize personnel. One means to limit access to both assets and related accounting records is through the use of physical controls. Protection devices restrict unauthorized personnel from obtaining direct access to assets or indirect access through accounting records that could be used to misappropriate assets. Locked storage facilities restrict access to inventories, and fireproof vaults prevent access to petty cash vouchers. Transaction recording equipment limits access to assets b limiting the number of employees involved in recording and posting transactions