Where figures take shape
The department of finance and accounting (DFA) combines the disparate activities relating to the shop, reception and cashier team as well as visitor services, with its tasks of bookkeeping, controlling and running the membership office. The Zürcher Kunstgesellschaft is run as any normal business: as an SME with around 120 full and part-time staff the Kunsthaus undertakes all the usual accounting tasks: accounts receivable and payable, financial accounting, payment transactions via Internet, balance sheet, income statement, liquidity control and salary administration. On top of this come salary calculations, insurance and contractual issues. Reporting and compiling statistics for internal, as well as for municipal or cantonal, purposes in addition to finding solutions to VAT questions or providing a cushion for renovation costs are all part of our daily work.
The financial cycle begins in late summer when all staff who either receive or spend money are integrated into the planning and budgeting process. The watchword is decentralisation; this means that responsibility is transferred to the individual departments, thereby promoting cost consciousness. Activity plans with costs and revenues are drawn up. The consolidated plan income statement – “the budget” – becomes the touchstone for all the activities within the Kunsthaus. Those responsible for controlling and monitoring budgets receive close support from their colleagues in the DFA who provide them with all the information and analysis they need. Revenue surpluses help to support the further development of the operational and personnel infrastructure. Project teams create the building blocks for this. Internal controls protect against mishaps. In the membership office membership data is processed on a daily basis and the concerns of our loyal art-loving customers are dealt with. And things really hot up towards the end of the year when the 18,000 plus members pay in their membership fees. This important revenue, together with other income, determines the room for manoeuvre when financing the broad spectrum of Kunsthaus activities.