Credit control is a tough but necessary part of business. Some days it can feel as though you’re getting nowhere and the added stress of late payments and tired excuses, like “we never received your invoice”, “the cheque is in the post” or “our payment systems are down”, makes credit control feel like an impossible task. Here are some resolutions that you should keep in 2018 to make your job a little easier.
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One or two late payments can be more damaging than you may think, especially if they are your bigger contracts. Carrying out a credit report on a client can give you the confidence to trade with a client, safe in the knowledge that they are stable enough to pay their bills on-time. A credit report gives you an insight into a clients’ payment history and financial stability, from the amount of time it takes them to pay an invoice to whether they have been issued with a CCJ.
You may think that carrying out a credit report at the beginning of your relationship is enough to satisfy you for the duration, but things can change very quickly in a matter of months. If your client suffers from late payments too, this can lead to significant financial difficulty and may mean that they stop paying you. You may notice that they are becoming slower at paying you, this might be a change in employment but it may indicate some cash flow problems. Carrying out a regular credit report throughout your relationship will mean that you are alerted to any warning signs of financial difficulty before they impact your business too heavily, it also means that you can be proactive and try to resolve payment issues before they even arise.
A clear credit control procedure will help you and your team to work quickly to recover late payments. Contact the client once you have sent the invoice to ensure that they received it and are happy with the details, this eliminates the risk of them disputing the invoice later to avoid payment. A polite phone call can be enough to remind the client that a payment is overdue and resolve your problem, but follow up with an official letter, informing them of the overdue amount and any late payment fees or interest that you charge. Early payment discount or settlement discounts can be used to encourage payment in full too. If late payments are using up a lot of time, then employing the services of a third-party means you can free up your resources to focus on other tasks while the agency works tirelessly to recover any debt owed to you.
At Commercial Domestic Investigations, our team understand how difficult credit control can be, that’s why we work tirelessly on your behalf. We take the time to understand your business and your clients and offer a complete solution to your credit control needs, from credit reporting and tracing and investigation to invoice collection. To find out how we can help you, contact us on 08444 159200, use our contact form or email firstname.lastname@example.org.