Stake Finance - Ward Allocations option on MLS

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moroni12
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Stake Finance - Ward Allocations option on MLS

Postby moroni12 » Fri Mar 07, 2008 11:35 am

As a stake finance clerk I have been tracking annual budget allocation to units using a spreadsheet. I have tried to use the allocation section on MLS (only on stake versions) to make and track these allocations but can't figure out how to do it. Any help here? MLS help doesn't address this (not that I can find.)

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opee
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Postby opee » Fri Mar 07, 2008 8:15 pm

Mike D Clerk wrote:As a stake finance clerk I have been tracking annual budget allocation to units using a spreadsheet. I have tried to use the allocation section on MLS (only on stake versions) to make and track these allocations but can't figure out how to do it. Any help here? MLS help doesn't address this (not that I can find.)


My experience is that the allocation tracking does not really work on the Stake side because the formula MLS uses (sacrament meeting attendance only + Stake "allotment" factor) in the tool is not the same as the one we receive from SLC that uses attendance of sacrament + YM + YW + Primary + Singles... It would be a nice feature to have, but I have not been able to get it to work because the inherent formulas are different from "reality".

bushgv-p40
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Ward Allocations

Postby bushgv-p40 » Tue Mar 18, 2008 8:42 am

Having nearly 40 years experience as a ward or stake finance clerk, I have found no way to use MLS to make my ward allocatins. I also use an Excel spreadsheet, and can allocate everything but additional Primary allocations, because that seems to use data not found on the stake quarterly report. For that figure, I have to wait for the information from Salt Lake. Using the stake quaeterly report, I can easily figure the allocations for general budget, Young Men, Young Women, and YSA. If you are interested, I can send you an e-mail with a sample of this spreadsheet attached. You may reply to bushgv@comcast.net

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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Tue Mar 18, 2008 2:04 pm

bushgv wrote:Having nearly 40 years experience as a ward or stake finance clerk, I have found no way to use MLS to make my ward allocations. I also use an Excel spreadsheet, and can allocate everything but additional Primary allocations, because that seems to use data not found on the stake quarterly report. For that figure, I have to wait for the information from Salt Lake. Using the stake quarterly report, I can easily figure the allocations for general budget, Young Men, Young Women, and YSA.


I don't see why Primary would be any harder than YSA. The allocation for YSA is figured by taking the sacrament meeting attendance percentage, multiplying it by the number of YSA as of the end of the quarter, and then multiplying that by $6.25 (in the US, at least). To do that, you must know the number of YSA at the end of the quarter, which is not on the quarterly report, but can be obtained from MLS if you run the proper report right at the end of the quarter.

Similarly, the Primary allocation is figured by taking the percentage of Primary attendance from the Quarterly report, and multiplying it by the number of members aged 8-11 as of the end of the quarter. Again, you would have to run a report at the end of the quarter to gather that number, but if you want the number that early, you can do it. It's really no different from YSA.

That said, I don't worry about being so quick -- as soon as I get the budget allocation figures from Salt Lake, I immediately do the calculations my stake president has directed, and we send out the budget allocations to the wards within the week. The wards are operating for the year on an estimation of the annual allocation anyway, so the stake is simply sending a mid-course correction as it were, so it arrives soon enough.

Trying to precisely anticipate the YSA and Primary numbers seems a bit problematic, as the stake records may not precisely match the church records if records are in the process of being moved right at the end of the quarter.

bushgv wrote:If you are interested, I can send you an e-mail with a sample of this spreadsheet attached. You may reply to bushgv@comcast.net


If you're willing to e-mail it to anyone, you might save yourself and everyone else some hassle if you would just attach it to a post. Just a suggestion....

G. Garcia-p40
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Postby G. Garcia-p40 » Tue Mar 18, 2008 2:58 pm

I have for a long time in various wards taken the first quarter budget allocation from the Stake and multiplied by four then loaded that in the computer so that the printout of how much has been spent be each organization makes more sense to the Bishop. Am I doing something, for lack of better words, not good? Tom in New Mexico

moroni12
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Good, but maybe not the Best

Postby moroni12 » Tue Mar 18, 2008 3:20 pm

G. Garcia wrote:Am I doing something, for lack of better words, not good? Tom in New Mexico


Tom in NM if this is what works for your unit and your bishop then who can say it isn't 'good'? There are however some drawbacks to only using the first of four allocations to formulate an annual budget. If all you are trying to do is set a base budget for ward auxiliaries then this is just fine. As a stake clerk I send each unit a report showing each quarterly allocation so the unit leaders can have better information on which to make budget decisions. If you don't recieve this from your stake you may consider requesting it.

:)MDC

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aebrown
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Creating an annual budget

Postby aebrown » Tue Mar 18, 2008 4:07 pm

Mike D Clerk wrote:There are however some drawbacks to only using the first of four allocations to formulate an annual budget. If all you are trying to do is set a base budget for ward auxiliaries then this is just fine. As a stake clerk I send each unit a report showing each quarterly allocation so the unit leaders can have better information on which to make budget decisions. If you don't recieve this from your stake you may consider requesting it.


To quote Shakespeare, "the time is out of joint" in your reply. In the first quarter of the year, you as a stake clerk can't possibly send information about all four quarterly allocations. The Church hasn't yet sent you the information. For that matter, you haven't yet submitted your 1st and 2nd quarter Quarterly Reports, which determine the 3rd and 4th Quarter budget allocations.

So there will always be some estimating involved if wards and stakes do as the Handbook directs, and prepare an annual budget. I've heard that some stakes give wards an annual budget allocation at the beginning of the year and don't change that through the year. But that just means that the stake is doing the estimating, and if there is some significant change in attendance through the year, the stake will have a significant deficit or surplus to deal with.

Our stake informs the wards each quarter as to what their exact budget allocation is for that quarter. We recommend that each ward takes the 1st quarter allocation, in conjunction with the history of past quarters to account for seasonal variations and the annual sales tax refund, to make their best conservative estimate of what their annual allocation will be. They prepare an annual budget based on that estimate.

Then as the wards receive actual quarterly allocations throughout the year, they make appropriate adjustments to their annual budget. By the time the 4th quarter allocation amount is received in October, they finally know the exact annual allocation. I don't see how they can possibly know it any sooner (outside the option of the stake doing the estimating, as I mentioned above).

moroni12
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Amended Reply

Postby moroni12 » Wed Mar 19, 2008 8:14 am

Content correction - I did not intend to imply that I send out all four allocations at once at the beginning of the year - as you state Alan, that isn't a possibility. I send the allocation information quarterly, as we receive it. The last two paragraphs of your post mirrors what we do on a stake and ward level.

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Stake to Ward Allocations

Postby mtolman-p40 » Wed Mar 19, 2008 10:11 am

Our Stake does as was mentioned earlier. Each ward receives a onetime fixed budget at the end of each year for the upcoming year. They have already looked at the previous allocation and will add or subtract for fluctuations in attendance that occurred from the September 'count' month used for the annual calculations. This takes the variability of budgets out of the wards and is borne by the stake. The only downside to this simple approach is if you live in an area of overall contracting membership. Then the stake will take a hit. Having been both on the stake clerks sides and a ward clerk several times, this is the simplest process that I have seen for both the stake and ward to manage.

The only time there has been a mid year adjustment is when a ward has experienced unusually HIGH growth.

Mike Tolman


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