Serenic Navigator Improves Financial Control for Archdioceses and Dioceses
Diocese of Fargo
The Diocese of Fargo was founded in 1897 and includes 13 schools, 136 parishes in the eastern half of North Dakota, with 102 priests serving a Catholic population of 85,570. Prior to implementing Serenic Navigator, the organization struggled to find an accounting software product that could handle both the routine and specific requirements needed in the three different types of entities it serves: a traditional diocesan multiple funds and multiple department structure, a foundation structure, and a deposit and loan structure.
“As a result, we had to bandage products or elements of products together, duplicate entry efforts, and manually track and/or enter routine items,” said Scott A. Hoselton, the finance officer at the Diocese of Fargo. “Serenic Navigator has the flexibility and functionality to handle all of our needs in one program, with the underlying power to meet everyday and unexpected needs as they arise.”
Prior to implementation, the diocese hoped to save about one week’s time per year. Hoselton estimates the organization is actually saving four weeks per year on the Investment Management (Deposit and Loan) portion of Serenic Navigator alone, with additional savings in other areas.
Archdiocese of Detroit
Although not formally established as a diocese until 1833, Detroit’s Catholic history dates back to 1701 when a group of French traders, accompanied by two priests, settled on the banks of the Detroit River. Today, the diocese serves six counties in the Detroit Metropolitan area with a total population of nearly 4.5 million. Of that total, some 1.5 million, or 33 percent, are practicing Catholics. The diocese, which has a workforce of more than 200 at its administrative headquarters, is comprised of 304 parishes and 722 priests.
Since early in 2006, the diocese has been taking advantage of the core fund accounting functionality built into the Serenic Navigator system, including: a general ledger that is fully integrated, offering complete drill around navigation with all other modules such as accounts payable, accounts receivable, advanced allocations, advanced budgeting, cash management, purchase orders, reimbursement billing, and workflows with approvals. The diocese also implemented the Serenic Investment Management module.
“After reviewing several software packages and making corresponding reference checks, Serenic Navigator came highly recommended. Hence, the Archdiocese of Detroit chose to go with Serenic Navigator for our financial and operational applications,” said Daniel R. Oliver, the diocese’s associate director of finance and administration.
The organization’s primary reason for choosing Serenic Navigator was its wide range of applications, which fit the various business activities carried out by the diocese. In addition, it noted that Serenic Navigator’s functionality appeared to be the most user-friendly, and Serenic Software had a good support team.
Diocese of Great Falls-Billings
Founded in 1904, this diocese serves more than 100,000 Catholics throughout the eastern two-thirds of Montana. The Diocese has 85 priests and is comprised of 65 parishes, 45 missions and 10 parochial schools.
The diocese business office needed a fund accounting solution that was as broad and all encompassing as its responsibilities. It was looking for a flexible solution that could be customized for its five differently-structured financial organizations, each with its own set of policies and procedures. With limited personnel, it also needed to produce more results with fewer resources.
Joe Loncki, diocese business manager and finance officer, cited Serenic Navigator's strengths as the software’s navigation, or drill down capabilities, screen consistency throughout all modules, and standard report writing options.
Loncki said using Serenic Navigator, the organization can complete all of its payroll activities in about two hours – a time savings of at least 50 percent. “The productivity increase in our office (from the implementation of Serenic Navigator) allowed us to consolidate all bookkeeping responsibilities into two positions – converting a third position into a critically needed administrative support position without incurring any increase in staffing costs,” Loncki said. “Perhaps the most tangible measure of Serenic Navigator’s return on investment is that I will recoup the cost of implementation in a mere 25 months.”
Catholic Diocese of Orlando
The Diocese of Orlando was established in 1968, and originally included 50 parishes and served 128,000 Catholics. Because of the explosive growth of the Orlando metropolitan area, engendered by the opening of Walt Disney World and other tourist destinations, the diocese became one of the fastest growing in the nation. Today, it includes 80 parishes, 10 missions, and 37 schools spread over nine counties of Central Florida. It serves a population of approximately 800,000 Catholics.
In early 2008, the diocese needed to replace its existing AS400 system with software that would provide the advanced budgeting capabilities, automated workflow processing, and investment management capabilities required to effectively manage the fund accounting needs of the diocese.
“We were impressed by Serenic’s focus and commitment to the diocesan community” said Jack Paige, director of IS and technology for the Diocese of Orlando. “Serenic’s Investment Management product, for example, is a fully integrated component of the Serenic Navigator financials solution and is a great fit for our Diocesan Savings and Loan program. This was not something we could find in other products. And since Serenic Navigator is based on the powerful Microsoft Dynamics NAV system, we will also have full integration with Microsoft Office. After talking to other Serenic clients and completing an intensive review of the product, we are confident that Serenic Navigator will empower us to provide the level of accountability and transparency our constituents deserve.”