With 28 local chapters scattered throughout Canada from Victoria to St John’s, traditional accounting software just wasn’t working for AIESEC Canada. They needed something intuitive enough that the student appointed VP of finance at each local chapter could easily learn it, robust enough that it would update all of the information into one central location, and affordable enough that it fit in their budget.
Basically, they were looking for Wave!
A not-for-profit run by student volunteers, AIESEC Canada facilitates a global internship program that sends Canadian students abroad and allows Canadian businesses to take global interns into their organizations. This exchange develops core leadership and business skills in students, both Canadian and international. Given that developing core business skills is a key goal of AIESEC, they just couldn’t pass up on the opportunity to sneak in one extra lesson: Business tools are moving away from the status quo. Want to be successful? Then keep up!
Not only is AIESEC Canada a great example for other NGOs, but they’re also considered a leader among international AIESEC chapters. Generally noted as one of the best chapters in terms of their financial organization and responsibility, AIESEC Canada was winner of the PWC Finance Sustainability Award last year. Now that they’re all set up in Wave, we’re confident they’re a shoe-in for the award again this year!
Before & After
“When we were using Simply Accounting, it got outdated quickly. We didn’t want to spend a lot of money investing into a separate financial tool for each chapter, as we’re a not-for-profit run by students and don’t have a lot of free funds. Not only that, but as a national body, we weren’t able to see every chapter’s Simply Accounting file. There was no transparency between head office and the local chapters, and every quarter each individual had to send their financials into head office. It wasted their time and ours, and left us with a less clear picture of just how each chapter was spending their funds.”
Now, AIESEC Canada has a system that’s easy for the students to use, and doesn’t require sending their files back and forth! The VP of Finance at each chapter (who is always a student) keeps their chapters finances up to date, and head office has real time access to their information. It increases transparency and decreases time. And most importantly it gives students an accurate picture of where finance is going in the future: up, up, and into the cloud! It makes life a whole lot easier for the students and the interal audit team, and nothing beats the price point: Free!
The information and tips we’re sharing in this article are meant to be a starting point for your year-end tax prep, so you can be informed and feel confident when working with your accountant. Be sure to check with a tax expert in your country or region for any specific advice you need, as each business (and tax district) is different. As our lawyers would say: “This article is for informational purposes only. It should not be considered legal or financial advice.”