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Virtual Finance Solutions for Nonprofits

Accounts Payable

Deluxe eChecks | Credit Cards | Direct Deposit Vendor Payments through QuickBooks | ACH (Automatic Clearing House) | Bill.com | Online Bill Pay

Deluxe eChecks

  • What is a Deluxe eCheck?
    • Deluxe eChecks are regular checks that are delivered and retrieved by the recipient via email rather than in a printed form through the mail. There is no additional software required to retrieve and print the Deluxe eCheck and it can be deposited remotely or at the bank just like a normal paper check.
  • Deluxe eChecks are a good low-risk solution for small nonprofits that preserve good checks and balances between the bookkeeper and the account signer.
  • Deluxe eChecks allow for the primary account holder to set permissions for users to ensure better controls.
  • For QuickBooks users (both Online and Desktop), Deluxe eChecks in particular are beneficial because they have a free add-on that allows your bookkeeper to continue their normal processing of accounts payable in QuickBooks. For more information on the add-on, please go to the Deluxe eChecks website here.
  • Starting with Deluxe eChecks is affordable and low risk. Prices range from 50 Deluxe eChecks for $30 up to 1,000 Deluxe eChecks for $480. See here for more information on pricing. There is no monthly subscription.
  • More questions? See the list of FAQs on the Deluxe website: https://www.deluxe.com/Deluxe eChecks/faq

 

Credit Cards

  • Credit cards are an excellent option for organizations, especially for routine or automated bills. In comparison to debit cards, where funds come directly from a checking account, credit cards allow for more time to review and dispute transactions.
  • For most credit cards, organizations can have a master account and have multiple cards assigned to employees.
  • For all cards, limits can be set to minimize the potential for damaging fraudulent spending.
  • Often banks offer credit card services and the accounts can be linked making for easier payments.

 

Direct Deposit Vendor Payments through QuickBooks

  • Direct Deposit Vendor Payments through QuickBooks
  • For clients that already have a payroll subscription, direct deposit can be an effective way to pay 1099 vendors in both QuickBooks Desktop and Online.
  • For this method, organizations will need their own payroll subscription and will need to contact Intuit directly for guidance in the fees. Online and Desktop payroll licenses have multiple levels and, therefore, organizations should check with QuickBooks as costs may vary.
  • For more information on the process of setting up vendors to be paid via direct deposit, see the link below:

 

ACH (Automatic Clearing House)

  • ACH is a network that coordinates automatic payments without using paper checks, wire transfers, credit cards or cash.
  • ACH can be set up for receiving as well as sending payments.
  • Utilizing ACH can be very effective for organizations and improve their efficiency in making or receiving payments, while eliminating paper.
  • An organization’s bank is the best point of contact to set up the ACH transactions.
  • Organizations can set access and permission levels for employees, which allows for checks and balances.
  • Here is a good article from the Balance about pros and cons of using an ACH system.


Bill.com

  • Bill.com is an excellent solution for organizations looking to take their accounts payable process virtual and that want to maintain solid and auditable records.
  • Bill.com allows organizations to pay vendors through both electronically with ACH payments and via paper check, printed and mailed by Bill.com.
  • The system allows for multiple levels of access and visibility, which makes the control process significantly more stable and lowers risk of fraud.
  • Bill.com integrates with both QuickBooks Online and Desktop.
  • The system keeps a record of all electronic files sent to it and organizations can delegate access to their auditor.
  • Setting up Bill.com is more of an investment of time, money and energy than other systems, so this option is best suited for organizations looking to make their accounts payable process permanently virtual.
  • Bill.com is a subscription service. To see the pricing model, please see the information on Bill.com’s website here. To have the integrations with accounting software, organizations will need to be at the “Team” level or greater.
  • In addition to the monthly subscription, there are per transaction fees as well. ACH payments are significantly less expensive than printed check payments.
  • For more information on Bill.com for small business, go to the Bill.com website here.


Online Bill Pay

  • Most banks allow organizations to pay their bills via online bill pay.
  • Generally, the process for small businesses is the same as for individuals.
  • This system is convenient, but generally lacks the opportunity for segregation of duties. One person normally has to both set up the payment and approve the payment, leaving opportunities for fraud.
  • Organizations should check with their individual bank to see if the bank has additional levels of access to set permissions for different users.
  • Since this method generally comes with the most risk, organizations should carefully evaluate the lack of controls before employing it. This should be considered as a short-term, stop-gap measure.