Women to Women (Kvinna til Kvinna) advances women’s rights by funding 130 women’s organizations in 10 conflict-prone countries. Founded in 1993 in response to the Yugoslav Wars, Women to Women has expanded from the Balkans to war-torn communities across Eurasia and the Middle East. Women to Women focuses on six themes: including more women in peace processes, protecting women’s right to their bodies, creating meeting places, strengthening defenders of women’s rights, ensuring security for all, and increasing women’s power.
We sat down with Katja Mannerla, Head of Accounting, to discuss how Xledger has transformed Women to Women.
Xledger: Thank you for your time. Why don’t we start with what Women to Women was looking for in a finance system. What were your requirements?
Katja Mannerla: For Women to Women, it was absolutely essential to have an accounting system that could keep track of multiple grants for several hundred projects. For us it is not just an overrun of the project budget that is a problem. If we don’t utilize project funds, the consequence may be that donors no longer trust our assessments of necessary donor support for each project. For us, reporting and monitoring at all levels needs to be simple, fast, and reliable. It was also important that start-up costs were not too high, as was the case with the few traditional business systems that met our large reporting requirements.
X: How did Xledger address your technical challenges?
KM: As Women to Women exists in ten countries, it would be impossible to distribute the financial work locally with a traditional IT system. We chose Xledger because the system is available anywhere and you do not have to sit on the lap of IT support. In Xledger, the local staff can participate in our financial processes.
X: So what were the most important considerations in selecting Xledger?
KM: The most important thing for Women to Women in choosing Xledger was donor reporting and making budget follow-up per donor agreement possible.
We estimate that before Xledger, it took two weeks to complete a quality-assured report for a large project. In Xledger the whole processes takes about three days. The reason it moves so much more quickly is that we get all the numbers with the touch of a button, but also that there are fewer quality assurance elements in Xledger thanks to the fact that they have a dimension for donor agreements in the report. With Xledger, we can get real-time control over the situation.
X: Thanks so much, Katja.
KM: You’re very welcome.