How Organizations Can Mitigate Financial Risks During the Health Crisis

By Bradley Bartells, CPA, MUN CPAs

The current health pandemic is going to create additional risks to the financial stability and well-being of not-for-profit organizations. With organizations sending employees home to work remotely, or potentially employees out with an illness for an extended period, the leadership of NFP organizations need to take additional steps and precautions to address the increased risks of fraud and/or errors to an organization’s financial information.

Some tips to mitigate the risk of a financial loss to your NFP organization:

  • Make sure expense payments to vendors continue to have appropriate reviews and approvals before payment. Fraudsters and scammers may be trying to get money from organizations who are distracted. Make sure your employees and finance team understand the importance of continuing to follow your organization’s policies and controls for expense payment approvals. It’s OK to be a little extra skeptical and cautious right now. Don’t shortcut!
  • Fraudsters and scammers are trying take advantage of your employee’s fears, confusions and unknowns. Be overly cautious of unexpected e-mails asking for information. Make sure your team is continuing to be skeptical of unexpected e-mails or e-mails from unknown sources. If in doubt, make sure your staff knows to pick up the phone and call to verify information. Even e-mails from a known co-worker or business associate should be scrutinized if the message or request is unusual or somewhat confusing.
  • With many workers potentially working remotely from home, make sure your finance team has regularly scheduled calls to keep your finance team on as normal of a routine as possible. Staying in regular communication when finance departments are potentially fragmented will reduce the risk of a task or issue being overlooked, which in turn will reduce the risk of a financial reporting error.
  • Create scheduled task lists for your employees working from home, to ensure tasks and responsibilities are not overlooked. When employees are accustomed to a work routine, and that routine is disrupted by having to work in a new location, normal tasks and responsibilities may get overlooked. Ensuring that your organization’s normal monthly financial close and reconciliations are performed timely will reduce the risk of a financial reporting error.
  • Create a list of employees who are backups to perform higher priority tasks, in case the primary employee responsible for a task becomes ill and is not able to work for an extended period.
  • Give all of your remotely working employees contact information for your IT provider, in case they have a problem accessing your organization’s network.

These tips will help to ensure your organization’s financial reporting remains consistent when we all get to the other side of this health crisis. Stay safe!

Bradley J. Bartells, CPA
[email protected]


Sublime Digital Marketing Group

About Ken

Ken Henderson is a seasoned entrepreneur and digital marketing professional, presently serving as the CEO of Sublime Digital Marketing Group, a respected marketing agency located in Rancho Cordova, California.


Boasting over two decades of industry experience, Ken has cultivated expertise in numerous facets of digital marketing, such as website design, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), copywriting, communication, CRM systems, and advertising on platforms like Facebook and Google. As a certified Google Partner and Zoho Partner, Ken’s knowledge is both extensive and cutting-edge.


Alongside his marketing abilities, Ken has delved into automation and artificial intelligence applications, integrating them into his collaborations with businesses and non-profits. His work with a wide array of clients, including non-profits, law firms, property managers, political campaigns, private schools, and small to medium businesses, has aided them in achieving their marketing goals.


Beyond his business accomplishments, Ken is an active community leader. He sits on the board of the Rancho Cordova Chamber of Commerce, contributing to the shaping of the region’s economic outlook, and is also a special advisor to MLK365, a group dedicated to making positive impact in communities. Moreover, he is a graduate of the prestigious Rancho Cordova Leadership Program and also a Certified GENEIUS, attesting to his remarkable leadership qualities.


Ken’s speaking engagements provide valuable insights into digital marketing, automation, and artificial intelligence and creative finance for businesses. His goal is to encourage others to embrace innovative marketing strategies and utilize technology for business growth.


Social Venture Partners

About Brad

Brad brings over 20 years of executive leadership in both the for-profit and non-profit sector. As a technology entrepreneur, he has helped to launch several enterprise software startups, one of which he led as Co-Founder and Vice President from 2002 through to its exit in 2016. He brings a people-centered style of leadership that leads to healthy organizational culture. He enjoys developing systems, strategy, and structure that set the foundation for organizations to scale and grow. Brad is considered a purpose-driven person and always seeks to “start with why” in everything he gets involved with. 
Beyond the enterprise technology roles he’s held, Brad was also instrumental in launching several community-based social entrepreneurship endeavors. He is the founder of the Orangevale-Fair Oaks Food Bank, Orangevale Food Bank Farm, HART of Orangevale and Fair Oaks, and the Big Day of Service. He also served as President of the Orangevale Chamber of Commerce from 2018-2022 where his impact led to a re-energized business and nonprofit membership community. Under his leadership, the Chamber secured $10M funding from SACOG for Greenback Lane streetscape improvements, 3x membership growth, 5x budget growth, formation of the Orangevale Community Council, and a more vibrant culture throughout the community. Brad currently serves on the boards of several other nonprofit organizations in the Capital Region. 
Brad currently serves as the Executive Director for Social Venture Partners of Sacramento, an organization seeking to build nonprofit connections and capacity by bringing together leaders from the business and nonprofit community. He oversees partnership growth strategy, daily operations, portfolio engagement, and major events such as the annual Fast Pitch social innovation program.
In 2018, Brad and family also launched a 10-acre u-pick flower farm called Heirloom Acres Farm. Thousands of people visit their farm all summerlong for flower u-pick events, and they also host a holiday barn market and have Christmas trees available in December. 
Brad’s superpower and life mission is about bringing people together for a purpose. He believes our community will be stronger when leaders are connected and engaged. 



About Debbie

Debbie is the founder and Executive Director of Health Education Council. Her two primary areas of expertise are cross-sector coalition building and reducing health disparities in diverse low-income communities.



About Michelle

Michelle Odell is the Director of Public Affairs for Kaiser Permanente in South Sacramento, where she oversees all aspects of Public Affairs including community relations, government relations; community health and community benefit planning; and internal and external communications, including media relations.

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Kristi Rolak is Sales Director in Sacramento for One Workplace, a full service commercial interior furnishings company headquartered in Santa Clara and serving greater Sacramento.