Helping a national nonprofit improve how it allocates, shares, and manages shared service costs

The  Challenge

City Year is a $150-million national organization focused on helping students stay in school and on track to succeed. The organization operates in 25 cities, and plans to continue to grow to serve more students in more cities. City Year was in the midst of transforming its headquarters site support, requiring a change in how the network shared the cost of those services.

The CFO recognized that the final selection would be complex, requiring input, involvement and buy in from the national leadership team, board of directors, and local site leadership. At the same time, the CFO was overseeing an enterprise-wide technology implementation and managing the daily financial operations of a $150M organization—a very full plate.

The Room40 Approach

Room40 worked with City Year to provide an infusion of short-term, executive bandwidth to support the CFO in making the final decision, and helping to support the implementation, phasing, and change management. As a result, the organization is now able to:

  • better communicate shared support costs by type, per unit, and in total to the Board, and sites
  • more equitably distribute shared support costs to sites of different size, scale, and need
  • more tightly manage shared support costs by service, function, and as a portfolio

The Outcome

The Funds Flow decision and implementation plan was endorsed unanimously by the board of directors, finance, and site program committees and is now being executed. The new model is generating data that continues to support actionable insights for the City Year team.