The website XPastor discussed How to Get Ready for a Financial Audit. Figuring out how to get going on an audit for the first time is a challenge. Main points from a CPA who is now an executive pastor:
Hire an audit firm
This is a board responsibility. Staff helps but it needs to be driven by the board with the real decision made there.
Meet with the auditors before the audit
Communication before the audit makes it go much smoother.
Know your responsibilities in an audit
Superb discussion laying out the responsibility for the numbers and how to get started on developing support for your numbers in your financial statements.
Create internal controls
Here is a great description of all that stuff CPAs talk about so much: How do you as the church leadership make sure:
What we want to happen will happen and
We don’t want to happen won’t happen.
Your answers to those questions is what makes up your internal control.
I just visited the XPastor site for the first time. Tim Samuel runs the site, which has a huge amount of information for church leaders. The focus is executive pastors (thus the name of the site, XPastor), who are those people leading the administrative side of the church, the ones making things happen.
For more info on getting ready for an audit, check out the full article.
For lots of info on lots of other topics on running a local church, check out the website.