Based on input and observations from many partner programs, GtCNN research has shown that meeting or exceeding stakeholders’ expectations is a significant indicator of program health and sustainability. GtCNN received funding from the Kresge Foundation to address and improve the sustainability of GtC programs. An important factor in program sustainability is funding. We have developed three training modules with content that will enable GtC directors to better understand, plan and manage GtC finances to meet stakeholder’s expectations.
We initiated some research in 2014, surveying all GtC directors and completing in depth interviews with selected directors and stakeholders including a college president. We also looked at the financial data to understand the patterns and the overall financial health of the network. We found that, for the most part, Directors felt responsible for their revenue and budgets, but felt they had little ability to influence most of the elements. Few directors had a solid understanding of their stakeholder’s expectations of the GtC program. And across the many GtC programs, there was significant diversity of financial knowledge, tools and processes.
As we studied the financials of both open and closed programs, we found diversity in financial structure (some colleges provided tuition as in kind, others did not. Some programs had very strong K-12 funding, etc.). With one exception, programs which closed had a financial structure that burdened the stakeholders beyond what they had committed. Based on our research, we developed a training plan which is comprised of three major topics.
Module One: Basic Financial Structure of a GtC Program and Completing the Financial Reporting Template
Module one is a short audio training that covers basic financial concepts and structure of a GtC program. It also introduces the revised financial submission format and includes instructions for completing this annual submission.
Participants are provided an in depth overview of the financial components of a GtC program covering topics such as Revenue, Expenses, In-Kind, Program Balance, and provides a graphical representation of the expenses versus revenue. Participants will understand the foundational principles of a GtC budget.This online narrated presentation provides an overview and detailed instructions for completing the Financial Report:
GtC Financial Reporting Training Module.wmv
If you would prefer to read the presentation rather than view it online you will need two files:
Annotated PowerPoint file: GtC Financial Reporting Training for GWL.pptx
Notes from the narrated walk-through of the Financial Report spreadsheet: Reporting training - talking points.docx
Module Two: Stakeholder Expectations and Financial Planning for Sustainability
Module Two focuses on both understanding stakeholders’ expectations and planning your GtC budget for sustainability. Participants will increase their understanding of how the GtC program impacts key stakeholders i.e., school districts, colleges, students, etc., and can lead to better planning and greater influence.
Powerpoint: Financial Reporting Training
Sample Financial Report and Budget Planning Tool
Stakeholder Contributions and Benefits slide
Critical Questions to Ask Stakeholders slide