Saturday, June 18, 2016

Vast Wasteland of Corporate Accountability

Just because an organization, for example a government agency or a charity, is not chartered to earn a profit does not mean that it is more efficient than business (the latter budgets some funds for profits while the former do not). In fact, these agencies often produce abysmal results, as measured by funds spent versus services delivered. Government or charitable organizations have less oversight from third parties, are not required to divulge as much information as businesses have to, and frequently wield monopoly power (for example, a transportation district that controls bridge tolls). Costs go up, services get cut, and exorbitant compensation is paid to executives for objectively poor performance.

People who work in government are not "worse" than people who work in business. Businesses are forced to improve though competition and outsider scrutiny. Regarding government, if no one forces employees to work efficiently, most of them won't.

In a disappointing but not unexpected revelation the non-profit world suffers from the same disease as government agencies.
Nonprofit accounting is arguably one of the last vast wastelands of corporate accountability; rules are lax, disclosure is minimal, and available data are usually months, or even years, old.

Don’t expect the U.S. government to protect you. “There’s no regulatory agency for nonprofits,” observes CharityWatch President Daniel Borochoff.
Donors beware.

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