HCG opens new regional financial management services program

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 29, 2018

Contact: Ellen Batchelder, ebatchelder@hcg-ma.org, 413-584-1300 x3

HCG opens new regional financial management services program

In partnership with Baystate Municipal Accounting Group, the Regional Resource Group (RRG) and cloud based VADAR systems, HCG has constructed a new program allowing cities and towns to take advantage of combined municipal financial services. This regional program represents the first of its kind, designed to address a critical need and ensure optimum efficiencies.

“Expanding our municipal services brings savings and efficiencies to our local communities,” says Todd Ford, executive director, HCG. “Through this program, cities and towns are able to save money and staff time by utilizing cloud based technology and outsourcing financial management.”

Municipalities of any size may select some or all of the following services: finance director, accounting, collector, treasurer, and assessor. Each service is supported by a team in order to provide a tailored, responsive and affordable financial management solution. As services are bundled, the savings increase as efficiencies become more pronounced.

Through this new program, communities are able to receive the highest level of financial management without the costs associated with employment benefits or the risk of service gaps due to vacations and retirements. Over time, these savings can become significant as a community saves on retirement benefits and assessments, human resource costs, health insurance and potential legal costs.

“It is a natural fit to offer our services through a regional program,” says Justin Cole, director of municipal finance, Baystate Municipal Accounting Group. “We are excited to partner with HCG on this forward thinking program.”

This service meets a critical, identified need. According to a recent Massachusetts Workforce report, “an aging municipal workforce coupled with a limited pool of qualified replacements means cities and towns face the challenge of identifying and attracting capable municipal finance employees.”

Communities in Western Massachusetts are particularly vulnerable as they already face recruitment challenges. As time passes, this issue compounds as retirements increase and available, qualified finance professionals become scarce. Local governments face significant challenges in the in the coming years as they seek to identify, attract and retain professionals for the positions necessary to provide critical financial services.

HCG’s financial management service solves these challenges and provides a wider pool of well-trained experts with readily available skillsets and ensures that there is no gap in the case of vacation, illness, or bad weather.

Other benefits include: economies of scale across disciplines, savings and steep discounts of up to 25% with bundled services, and additional discounts as overall program grows. It offers increased data security, and no potential loss of institutional memory. Initial assessment is free.

Town leaders praise HCG’s partners. “When I started, the books had not been balanced in 11 months. The system Baystate set up streamlined the process, and saved us time and money,” says Jennifer Callahan, town administrator, Millville. “They have been incredibly easy to work with, and we have seen a marked improvement; our town now has a 98% collection rate.”

To learn more about how to participate in this program, please call us or visit hcg-ma.org/financial-management-services.

About HCG

HCG supports communities by empowering local, sustainable and efficient economies. The Purchasing Co-op allows cities and towns, schools, and nonprofits to get the most value by pooling their buying power, saving money, time, and effort on major and everyday purchases. Every cent HCG earns goes back to supporting the communities of Western Massachusetts. HCG is funded by its own revenue and grants.

About Baystate Municipal Accounting Group

Founded in 2009 by municipal employees, Baystate Municipal Accounting Group (BMAG) is recognized for its full service solutions, for all municipalities, regardless of size. BMAG is staffed entirely by those who had their start working as Town employees, who understand the complex operational and sometimes political nuances of working in the local government sector. Regardless of the position being filled, they approach each engagement from a team perspective, combining the background and experience of the firm as a whole to provide the most responsive and innovative financial management solution for the Town.

###

2018-08-29T12:06:32+00:00