Greater Cincinnati-Area Boy Scouts Council Advances its Mission by Reducing Expenses

The Challenge

The Dan Beard Council is the administrative body of the Boy Scouts of America in the Greater Cincinnati area. With an average annual membership of 33,000 youth, it is one of the largest metropolitan councils in the country. Funding for services and programs is provided through an annual giving campaign, corporate sponsorships and United Way support. Faced with increasing operational costs in a tight economy, the Dan Beard Council asked ERA to help them decrease non-core expenses.

The Solution

An important part of the Scout oath is “to help other people at all times.” ERA took this to heart in conducting an extensive review of the Council’s supplier relationships and costs to uncover potential opportunities for increasing cash flow. ERA category specialists with substantial industry knowledge and experience found savings in the categories of merchant card fees, office supplies, wireless telecommunications and copiers.

The Results

In the category of merchant card fees, ERA has worked with Beard’s existing processor to achieve fee reductions of 25% in the first nine months of implementation. ERA also issued an RFP for office supplies to obtain best-in-industry discounts using a single supplier. The client’s existing plans for telecommunications were reconfigured to achieve wireless savings of 25.5% totaling $10,000 annually. For copiers, ERA went to market with an RFP and a new vendor was selected to replace older machines and obtain new devices. Equipment leasing and service fee costs were reduced by 57%.

“As a non-profit business, every dollar we can save on our administrative and operational expenses is a dollar we can use towards our youth-serving programs. ERA has helped us identify and negotiate tens of thousands in savings, all done with expertise, professionalism, and with minimal effort on our part.”

-Mike Swofford, Director of Support Services

Dan Beard Council, Boy Scouts of America

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