East Tennessee Human Resource Agency (ETHRA) is a regional service agency in Eastern Tennessee that provides services such as child nutrition programs, housing assistance for low-income families, transportation, workforce development and community corrections for 16 counties. They are a nonprofit organization with 425 employees that receives government funding for the dozens of programs they offer to the community.

The Problem

Because ETHRA is a nonprofit agency that receives federal, state and local funding, they are required to retain extremely accurate records of the services they provide, for audit purposes.

“Because of the type of work we do and where we receive our funding, we are audited frequently,” said Cyndie Cecil, Support Services Manager for ETHRA. “We generate a lot of paper. It has to be moved from the county offices to the main office, where it is archived. We have auditors here all the time for different programs and we have to be able to provide them with all the records they need.”

Keeping these documents on file was creating an issue for ETHRA’s accounts payable department. In order to maintain accurate records, they were storing physical invoices and manually matching them to the corresponding check stubs. This process was very time-consuming. Every time ETHRA went through an audit, they would have to manually retrieve the files and then return them to the file cabinets.

“We write in excess of 2,000 checks a month,” Cecil said. “[Prior to the solution implementation] when we would undergo an audit, someone would have to pull the checks from storage and then return them afterward. Sometimes we’ve been asked to provide 800 checks in one audit. It took such a long time.”

Another issue ETHRA faced had to do with their children’s nutrition program. In order to keep track of which child received a meal on any given day, the employees were required to fill out information on bubble sheets. The resulting filled-in forms would have to be manually tallied by an employee, a task that was very time-intensive.

How Did PSIGEN Help ETHRA Get through Their Regulatory Audits?

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