The Town of Berlin Connecticut is in the midst of exciting growth as they celebrate the completion of a local high school renovation and prepare to take on new projects, including HVAC system renovations for three local elementary schools and clubhouse renovations of the Town’s golf course.
But as the Town’s capital needs have increased, so, too, has its outstanding debt. To keep pace with the new growth, the Town decided to move away from its outdated spreadsheets in hopes of finding a more robust system for managing its debt portfolio.
With new projects looming on the horizon, the Town had little time to work through a lengthy, arduous implementation process. The Town’s quest for a consolidated debt and lease management software with a simple onboarding process led the finance team to DebtBook, a solution that Kevin Delaney, Director of Finance, describes as “clear and easy-to-use.”
“The DebtBook implementation experience on both the debt and lease platforms has exceeded my expectations.”
The Town of Berlin, Connecticut faced several challenges with its current debt and lease management practices:
Debt Management and Payment Scheduling
The Town has invested in its infrastructure to provide its citizens with a beautiful, safe place to live, work, and play. But the new projects have translated into more debt, increasing the complexity of the Town’s payment, reporting, and planning processes. Coordinating compliance deadlines and payment schedules across their debt portfolio quickly became a cumbersome, time-consuming task that the Town’s finance team needed to streamline.
Decentralized Finance Records and No Single Source of Truth
Relying on multiple spreadsheets across multiple departments to manage and track payment schedules and statements had become inefficient, and the Town’s various, isolated data sources meant it had no single source of truth to keep its internal team (and the Town’s external professionals) on the same page and up to date.
GASB-87 Implementation and Compliance
With the rapidly approaching GASB-87 deadline, the Town needed a plan for implementing GASB-87 and a system to comply with the new standard on an ongoing basis. The Town’s finance team was unsure how to efficiently compile and organize their leases. With scattered documents and data, the team faced a long, tedious transition to GASB-87.
DebtBook’s simple debt and lease implementation process enabled the Town’s finance team to quickly and efficiently onboard so that they could promptly begin to leverage the platform’s tools and features and solve their team’s challenges.
“The DebtBook team was extremely knowledgeable about what they needed to do and the documents our team needed to provide. They asked for everything up front, which saved us a lot of time in the end.”
Following the easy, comprehensive onboarding process, the Town is already seeing improvements in their processes.
“As we go through our budget development process we want to capture all outstanding debt and projected payments. Being able to export the data from DebtBook has made it easier to identify, isolate, and view upcoming issues for the next fiscal year,” said Delaney.
The Town’s finance department was able to quickly and efficiently implement DebtBook’s solution, allowing them to immediately begin managing their debt and leases in the cloud. Because of DebtBook’s painless, easy onboarding process, the Town now has a jumpstart on meeting the GASB-87 deadline because all of their leases were identified, reviewed, and loaded into the application during the implementation phase. Additionally, the Town’s finance team can confidently manage their debt and leases from current and new projects without the fear of missing a payment or deadline.
“When our team first started evaluating DebtBook, I read some quotes about how easy the implementation would be. Now, having experienced both the debt and lease implementations, it’s proven to be exactly that!”
Post-implementation, the Town’s finance team is better positioned for success with the help of DebtBook’s powerful tools and features. The team plans to leverage the platform's features, including the ability to export charts and graphs and invite and manage an unlimited number of external guests, to more effectively manage their existing and future debt obligations.