Group Accounts are Available on our Website

I am so pleased to announce that our Group accounts were done, audited and dusted before Christmas! This is a record achievement for Playcentre Aotearoa and has allowed us to produce a wonderful Annual Report that can be included with grant applications by any of our centres. This can be found here.

I am also thrilled that not only was our annual report completed, we successfully completed the mammoth task of consolidating all of the Associations into one set of books and still achieving an essentially clean audit opinion. I couldn’t have done this without the help of our wonderful finance team and off course our awesome team of Treasurers, both in centres and those who from the Associations.

November Bulk Funding Round

We would like to acknowledge that the Bulk Funding round in November did not run as smoothly as we would have liked, and many centres received under or over payments. We apologise for this and we have worked with MoE to iron out the issues that came up, noting many of these were one off as a result of the changeover from Juniorlogs to Discover with some data being provided by both systems sometimes causing gaps and at others crossover. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the March Round is much simpler.

For those who received underpayments we apologise for the delays in funding, but are confident this has all been paid out now.

Some centres were accidentally overpaid, for these centres they would have noticed they received more than usual and will have had a communication to their Playcentre mailbox requesting this be refunded and how to code it. We do need to request these refunds as this money belongs to other centres and while we have floated the balance for now, we will have to deduct any outstanding amount from the March round in order to pay all centres. I would really like to thank all those centres who have already actioned the refund and for all centres understanding in this error and apologise for this inconvenience.

Equity Funding Reporting

We are required to report to the Ministry on the Equity Funding our Centres received last year that ended in August 2019 (Nov 2018 – Jul 2019 bulk funding rounds). For every Centre that received Equity Funding we need to report on the funding received and how this funding was spent by the Centre. Please note this information also needs to be provided to the Centre members/families.

In order to complete our reporting to the Ministry we have created a simple online form of 14 questions for Centres who received Equity funding to complete. This form, which will be available from 1st February 2020 can be accessed by clicking on the link below. All affected Centres have been sent a letter showing a breakdown of how much equity funding they received per category to assist you in completing the online form.

The deadline for completing this online form is 15th February 2020

Look back over the achievements

With the start of the New Year I thought it might be a nice time to reflect on the Amalgamation and how far we have come as an organisation, especially finance and our Treasurers. I joined Playcentre in April 2018 when the organisation was undergoing a time of exponential growth.

Many may not realise quite what the team in finance and payroll were up against and some suggested that we were not well prepared or running smoothly – both comments were true. The team had moved from a payroll of 22 to over 1,300 in less than 6 months, doing this through manual timesheets at one time meant we had as many as 5 staff required to simply keep up with the flow. This of course resulted in the rest of finance going to the wayside and some of our treasurers may remember the weeks of waiting for bulk funding, wage bills that never came and let’s not mention the dreaded finance pack of 2017.

Fast forward less than 2 years and we have all our staff on online timesheets, this was a huge mountain to climb, but my team and all those who helped in the regional offices got there. And what a difference it has made. We have also introduced some excellent IT solutions internally that although centres don’t see, they do feel the benefit with our ability to make quick turnaround on bulk funding, up to date billing and most off all our ability to put more resource into support for our Treasurers.

So thank you everyone and enjoy the year ahead, we will never be perfect, but we are doing our best to always improve.