Financial Edge by Blackbaud


 

Financial Edge NXT is a cloud accounting solution from Blackbaud that provides transparency across teams, security, compliance, and reduces the need for manual processes. The system is a fund accounting solution that provides a general ledger, projects, grants, endowments, accounts payable and receivable, fixed assets, banking, and more.

With a personalized dashboard and customizable views, Financial Edge NXT enables users to closely monitor income statements, program-to-expense ratios, cash balances, and other key metrics. Financial Edge NXT offers real-time reporting, with one-click drill-down functionality and export capability, to enable data-driven decisions in real time.

As a Blackbaud product, Financial Edge NXT is backed by a company with three decades of experience in the nonprofit market. The system allows users access to grant and proje ct accounting that allows for streamlined management of budget, as well as a way to effectively monitor accounts and generate reports. By using Financial Edge NXT, nonprofits can reduce dependency on manual processes, improving data entry accuracy.

 

Financial Edge by Blackbaud - General ledger
 
  • Financial Edge by Blackbaud - General ledger
    General ledger
  • Financial Edge by Blackbaud - Accounts
    Accounts
  • Financial Edge by Blackbaud - Payables
    Payables
  • Financial Edge by Blackbaud - Treasury
    Treasury
Supported Operating System(s):
Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Mac OS, Web browser (OS agnostic), Windows 2000

47 Reviews of Financial Edge by Blackbaud

Showing 1-20 of 47

 

from Triumph Treatment Services
Specialty: Human Services
Number of employees: 201-500 employees Employees number: 201-500 employees

Financial Edge

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As a non-profit, we have been using financial edge for 10+years

Pros

Feature packed
Great customer support.

Cons

Not the most user friendly

 
 

from TGCF
Specialty: Non-Profit
Number of employees: 51-200 employees Employees number: 51-200 employees

TGCF

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Very complex. Requires in house tech support to maximize utilization. Frequent hosting problems. High service cost/fees for using features.

Pros

My rep has been excellent in support. We appreciate his honest and timely replys. Software when structured is efficient.

Cons

Very complex. Not user friendly. High fees for features.

Advice to Others

Make sure u have a software specialist on staff. Beware of fees for credit card, team raiser, events module, etc. Employee training is vital.

 
 

from GrantLinkX
Specialty: Philanthropic Foundations
Number of employees: 2-10 employees Employees number: 2-10 employees

Excellent

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It is an all-inclusive, user-friendly software. Ithe is easy to use. When there may be questions or how to use features of the software it can take a little time to go through a guided tour with one of the assistants for the software but through hey are very well versed and explain and help.

 
 

from Kohl Children's Museum
Specialty: Arts & Cultural
Number of employees: 51-200 employees Employees number: 51-200 employees

Functional and Stable with little enhancements

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I am speaking about FE 7. I understand FE NXT offers more enhancements but from what i can tell the reporting blocks stays the same.

Pros

It is a stable platform and not difficult to understand.

Cons

Maybe because there are only around 4,000 clients using FE compared to RE's 15,000 clients the software appears to be built with functionality in mind. It feels like the software was made for those who wanted to integrate RE (that is why we have it) and not enhanced further to attract non-RE clients.

Advice to Others

Consider this platform if you use RE and a POS that can integrate. That was a huge draw. Besides this FE 7 is not flashy but that is kind of how accountants roll.

 
 

from YWCA of Minneapolis
Specialty: Philanthropic Foundations
Number of employees: 501-1,000 employees Employees number: 501-1,000 employees

Very good software for nonprofits of all sizes

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I have used Financial Edge 7 for Nonprofits after having used QuickBooks Online, Abila (fka Sage), and Microsoft GP Dynamics for nonprofit financials. I find Financial Edge to be the best of the four softwares that I have used. It is the most intuitive of the four that I have used. The biggest help to me is Blackbaud's outstanding support system. In addition to a great FAQ section on their website and many paid training sessions, Blackbaud offers a free chat service with knowledgeable tech representatives able to assist in most questions.

Pros

Intuitive mapping of how to complete processes, dynamic reporting and general ledger options, excellent support.

Cons

No ability to "drill down" into reports (something that is fixed in Financial Edge NXT), some slower processes in general.

Advice to Others

Blackbaud is moving its support and development fully into Financial Edge NXT. Watch for new developments in the software as they continue to release new features.

 
 

from Incarnate Word Academy
Specialty: Education
Number of employees: 51-200 employees Employees number: 51-200 employees

Great for Education

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We implemented Financial Edge two years ago and are very happy with the system. The implementation phase took some time and planning, but having the system setup as desired has been great. We utilize the Accounts Payable, Cash Receipts and General Ledge modules of Financial Edge. We did utilize Student Billing, however with the merging of Smart Tuition with Blackbaud we made the transition to Smart Tuition. We do use Raisers Edge and Education Edge as well, which has proven helpful as the records can be shared across the various platforms.

Pros

Versatile and easy to navigate

Cons

Can be expensive

Advice to Others

Spend extra time setting up, as once everything is in place it works great.

 
 

from UOF
Specialty: Non-Profit
Number of employees: 11-50 employees Employees number: 11-50 employees

Blackbaud Financial Edge (BBFE)

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BBFE has both strengths and weaknesses, as might be expected. It is a true fund accounting software with the ability to handle thousands of funds. Being able to push data in and exporting data out are 2 features that are usually very important, and BBFE mostly does that well. BBFE allows for attaching various homegrown codes to the data at the fund, account, and transaction level. This is not a panacea but can be helpful. The software can be used in a fairly high volume a/p environment and the g/l functionality is also pretty good.

Pros

Exporting data is easy, so long as the export you are looking for is available. Importing fund codes is do-able but may require some significant preparation of the upload. BBFE allows for a seemingly unlimited amount of codes to be attached to funds, accounts, and transaction lines. This is very helpful. BBFE has some built in custom reporting facilities that can be helpful. BBFE has a detailed security model that can help with internal controls.

Cons

Reports: many of the builtin reports do not contain running totals and grand totals as well as header information page-to-page as one would like. Exports: the data exports are not true sql type, but are a simplified version, which is sometimes adequate. You might need another sql facility to adequately access the data and control the data joins. BBFE imposes credit memos and disallows negative invoices--depending on what you are doing, that could be a big problem that will need to be addressed. BBFE automatically computes and shows balance forwards and each year does not stand on its own, so for some data analysis you might have to compute balance forwards in order to avoid having to download all historical data. BBFE doesn't enforce cash balancing for JEs (if 2 funds are exchanging cash, the JE can give more cash to the recipient than was removed from the payer). BBFE doesn't seem to understand control funds (a fund that holds detail information that belongs to a pool of other funds)--this will require booking JEs that would be unnecessary in some other fund accounting software. BBFE enforces using an outside service for production of 1099s.

Advice to Others

My advice is to look very carefully and vet the software very carefully for your specific needs before you buy. Don't simply allow vague assurances of business rule enforcement or of reporting greatness to hurry you to sign on the line. Not only should you be able to replicate your existing functionality, but you should be able to gain functionality that will increase efficiency. Only careful and thoughtful analysis will help here. Make sure that your consultant understands the importance of completing tasks early--if the consultant's perspective of "go live is the date we really knuckle down" and that doesn't match yours, your conversion will be very stressful as you anticipate the approaching go live date and compare it with your to-do list.

 
 

from Our Lady of Mercy School for Young Women
Specialty: Education

Financial Edge - Accounting

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Likes Best

Navigating the system is very user friendly, as is data input.

Likes Least

Data entry is clear but the report writing is challenging

Recommendations

Check and see if the canned reports work for you and see if they are willing to provide support on report writing

 
 

from San Marcos Academy
Specialty: Accounting / CPA

Beginning Implementation

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Likes Best

We are beginning our implementation with Blackbaud Raiser's Edge NXT and Financial Edge NXT. The software is easy to use and has amazing information, all with a very robust web based GUI.

Likes Least

Blackbaud has recently purchase Smart Tuition as a student billing software. We have implemented Smart Tuition and are having issues with conversion from our existing older software. It bills at a summary level instead of at a transaction level. Our hope is that Blackbaud will review this and update the software with a later release.

Recommendations

Make sure that the software has all of the features and functionality you need. There is not a perfect software package, but find the one that comes close to your needs.

 
 

from Van Andel Institute
Specialty: Non-Profit

An holistic way to view your financials.

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Likes Best

Financial Edge offers a holistic way to view your organizations financials from payroll to charitable contributions and accounts payable to fixed assets. Because the product can integrate with Raiser's Edge it's a great way to improve efficiency and communication between your finance and development departments while eliminating duplicate work in terms of data entry. It's a robust system that can replace less flexible systems such as Quick Books.

Likes Least

Initial set-up and integration with Raiser's Edge can take a very long time. Before you're up and running smoothly, it's estimated that you'll need to invest 6 months to a years worth of work. While comprehensive, Financial Edge is inflexible in terms of account coding. You have to know your financial structure before beginning to set up. This isn't a learn as you go type of software.

Recommendations

Integration and set up should be coordinated between a Blackbaud representative and your finance department/accountant. You can expect a long set up time and need to be ready to invest. Not only will the main user need training, but the main Raiser's Edge user should also be trained in Financial Edge to make the entire process smoother. Overall, you need to have a detailed implementation and financial structure plan ready before you get the software.

 
 

from Birch Family Services
Specialty: Accounting / CPA

Blackbaud Financial Edge... not great...

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Likes Best

It integrates well with nonprofit processes as well as other components of the blackbaud suite?

Likes Least

The software flexibility and functionality is a little clunky at least with the version we are running.

Recommendations

Be sure to map requirements with system capabilities and include operational people in the conversation.

 
 

from MDI Consulting
Specialty: Accounting / CPA

Sophisticated accoutning system

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Likes Best

I find the technical support staff informed and willing to work with us on a problem until it is resolved.
It can talk directly to Raiser's Edge.

Likes Least

The wait time for customer support has never been less than thirty minutes and usually more.
The program is very sophisticated with strong reporting functionality. However, that functionality implies a level of knowledge that most accounting staff do not have. It took me four hours to set up a simple balance sheet report format--with help from technical support.

Recommendations

There are several software with equivalent strong reporting and control features. Compare this product to Abila (MIP).
Be clear that the installation and training costs are high and the learning curve for staff extremely high.

 
 

from Beacon Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine
Specialty: Healthcare / Social Services

Great product for Non Profits

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Likes Best

The versatility of the product was great. You are able to track data on several levels using account numbers, and several transaction codes that you are able to define yourself. Despite all of that information that was housed individually, the software also would allow you to consolidate information across multiple entities. Report writing was fairly simple as were day to day processes of entering journal entries, AP invoices and AR invoices. A nice feature of the reporting was that you were able to create one report and filter it by the transaction codes before running the report. This meant you did not have to have 100s of reports for different scenarios. Instead you could create one report and filter it each time by the transaction codes or entities you were interested in viewing. We also integrated the software with PaperSave which allowed us to go paperless.

Likes Least

The support was not always the best. If you had an issue, sometimes the support had a difficult time understanding your issue and resolving it in a timely manner.

Recommendations

If you are looking for a non-profit software that allows you to track data on multiple levels as well as consolidate information across entities. This is a good option for you. The system is very robust and requires thorough implementation due diligence to make sure everything is set up appropriately, but overall it is a great, sophisticated product.

 
 

from Zigler Hospitility
Specialty: Accounting / CPA

FE review 2016

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Likes Best

You can continue to work after the month end date.

Likes Least

A little high in price. The recurring journal could be setup to generate in a batch instead of individually. Report dates for month end are time consuming to change. Wish that in the A/R system you could remove old clients.

Recommendations

Make sure you get a good setup, if things are not setup properly correcting can be an issue at a later date.

 
 

from YWCA
Specialty: Accounting / CPA

A capable program, although a bit clunky

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Likes Best

I like that it has many capabilities, and you are able to add products on to it.

Likes Least

I wish that it was a bit more intuitive- it seems like there is a lot of hunting and pecking to find what you are looking for.

Recommendations

Go through it thoroughly, make sure it does everything you need it to before you buy it.

 
 

from Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation
Specialty: Political Organizations

The best nonprofit accounting software, period.

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Likes Best

FE is quite flexible, especially its chart of accounts and the number of segments you can report on. Setup is easy, and unlike other packages, you're not glued to what you set up originally. If down the road you find you need to add a segment to your chart of accounts for reporting purposes, you can do that on the fly. And you don't need to be concerned at set-up with adding future account segments. But make no mistake: you've got to have a basic understanding of accounting in order to appreciate this product for all it can do. Customer support, through annual maintenance contracts, is excellent.

Likes Least

I too would like to be able to export financial reports into Excel without having to re-format when I get to Excel. That's a mild inconvenience, but there are times when you want to put stuff, data onto financial reports that can't get there any other way than through manipulation in Excel.

Recommendations

Don't short-change accounting by looking for something cheap like QuickBooks. Put me side by side with someone using QB, and I can do the job from start to finish, with greater reporting capabilities, and more accuracy - in less than half the time. Everybody talks about cost as if it is unreasonable to pay for excellent accounting software, but everyone overlooks the hidden costs of less than excellent accounting software - more time working through clunky modules, more mistakes from a lot of work having to be done in Excel. And for crying out loud, people, stop doing payroll in house! Pay Paychex to do all of that for you (or ADP). Doing payroll in house, using accounting software, just doesn't make any sense.

 
 

from Agricultural Research Foundation
Specialty: Other

Do them all

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Likes Best

Blackbaud provides on stop service including software, training, data backup, system upgrade

Likes Least

I do not have anything I like least yet, so far it meets our requirement of low cost, nice reporting system, read only user access with very reasonable price

Recommendations

Asking for DEMO is very critical and making comparison between different softwares. Prepare before DEMO and ask specific questions to your business needs.

 
 

from Holy Child Aacademy
Specialty: Education

Financial Edge - it's good but it's not easy

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Likes Best

It's a good application for larger schools and universities. But integrating with the various modules offered such as registrar and Raiser's Edge doesn't work easily without training

Likes Least

The entries are redundant and each entry takes a good deal of time to complete. There is no intuitive fill-in as you find with an application like QuickBooks. For the same reason there are fewer errors. Extracting the exact data and reports requires training. Reaching the tech department requires several layers of bureaucracy. Once you have reached the right individual, solutions are achieved.

Recommendations

Financial Edge is priced on the slightly higher end. You can purchase the modules you need. If you are a smaller school, QuickBooks would be an economical alternative.

 
 

from contemporary arts museum houston
Specialty: Arts & Cultural

I like the way it works.

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Likes Best

very flexible and powerful. you can make it do whatever you need

Likes Least

a few glitches along the way. we're hosted and had to deal with some issues, but that was in the past.

Recommendations

watch videos about the product on blackbaud and youtube

 
 

from Southcrest Baptist Church
Specialty: Non-Profit

Financial Edge Review

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Likes Best

I like the dashboard feature the best. It allows me to see our current financials without running any reports or looking through various accounts.

Likes Least

I can't seem to get certain reports to work. (941, 1099, etc.)

Recommendations

If you have a lot of donor restricted funds, make sure to ask plenty of questions to fully understand how to separate donor restricted from unrestricted funds.

 
 
 
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