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Managing Finances with Ease

A Case Study with Marlan Gary Funeral Home, The Chapel of Peace


After a “cookie cutter” experience with a previous accounting firm, Marlan Gary sought a more customized partnership between a company and his funeral home. Enter Directors Business Solutions (DBS), a division of Funeral Directors Life. Not only did DBS provide the detailed reporting Marlan needed to run his business, but the team members presented themselves as true partners with a goal to streamline Marlan Gary Funeral Home’s accounting and payroll. One year later, Marlan reflects on how DBS “became more than a bookkeeper.”


What was your experience with accounting before Directors Business Solutions, and how did you hear about DBS?

When I first opened my funeral home, one of the biggest business pitfalls I made for myself was not hiring a full-time accountant to help me with the books. I learned from that mistake, and prior to DBS, I signed up with a well-known accounting service in the funeral industry. They were good at what they did, but I got the impression they were a bit “cookie cutter” in the sense that I felt like they were having the same conversations with all their funeral homes. Just like in funeral service, no two families are the same; no two funeral homes are the same either.

Over the years, I’ve built a relationship with Passare, which led me to learn more about DBS. I’m very pleased with the accounting services provided by DBS.


At what point did you realize that switching to DBS was the right move for your business?

I knew switching to DBS was the right move for my business when they took accounting a step further than simply recording numbers. The team actually provided suggestions on where we could increase revenue. They became more than a bookkeeper.


That’s great to hear! As you know, DBS integrates with Passare’s case management platform. How does the integration help streamline your business?

The DBS and Passare integration makes reporting simple. I plug information into Passare, and it’s automatically sent to DBS. I don’t have to send anything or turn in receipts or deposit slips. With the integration with Passare, DBS can see revenue generated, caskets sold, the cremation rate, the amount of goods and services, and more. It’s convenient.

“They became more than a bookkeeper.”

How do you feel about the reports and insights that you receive about your business?

I like the monthly reports I receive from DBS. I’m not a “numbers person” at all, but the reports help me a whole lot as a funeral home owner. I have more insight into what’s going on at the funeral home on a daily and monthly basis. For example, we make daily purchases, but with the detailed numbers from the reports, I see how integrated everything is with each other. The report tells a story. I wasn’t getting that level of reporting from the previous accounting service I used.

I used to write checks without taking the time to see how much I was spending with a single vendor or in a certain area. The great thing about DBS is we have monthly meetings to go over the report and financials so that I can adjust spending, if needed. I don’t have to wait for a quarterly or biannual meeting like before to go over the numbers and try to readjust things. DBS makes it simple.

“The DBS and Passare integration makes reporting simple.”

Can you describe the ongoing relationship you have with DBS and how it’s different from your previous experience?

Well, I would never want to talk to my previous accounting company. That’s not the same for DBS. I trust DBS to handle the accounting, payroll, and taxes for my funeral home. Any time I have a question about anything, I can reach out to my designated point person or anyone on the team. They’re all very easy to contact, and I have their cell phone numbers, email addresses, and, of course, the office number. Whenever I need to reach someone, it’s never an issue.

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