While a smaller company may have only one person focused on credit and collections, that person often works in tandem with a controller, CFO, sales, and other departments. In a larger organization there will be multiple people involved in collections who may have their own assigned accounts to focus on, but they may also work together and share the responsibilities of smaller accounts. In order to work as a team, everyone involved needs one thing: consistent and reliable information.
Where are you storing credit and collections information today?
Most companies lack a single source of information accessible by the entire team.
If you have a master spreadsheet uploaded on a shared drive everyone works from, how can you be sure people are not saving this off onto their desktop and working from there? If collectors just work out of their email, what happens if their computer crashes, they are out sick, or simply cannot find what they are looking for in their inbox? If you’re working off aging reports printed from your accounting system, how much time are you wasting sifting through them, and how do you know others are working off that same data? If you are using these or other strategies, you can’t be certain of anything.
Additional reading: Six Powerful Benefits of Credit Collection Software
So what can you do?
Give your team a single source of truth by centralizing all of your credit and collections information into a single system that your entire team has access to, here’s why:
Communication & Customer Service: Centralized data storage and communications is vital to any team both large and small. Much like sales notes in a CRM system, credit and collection activities should be well documented in a centralized location or database to ensure that phone conversations, emails, disputes, account notes, and other important data is documented and available to authorized employees.
Having all account information in one place and available to all authorized employees ensures that your entire team can effectively manage daily activities and work together as a team toward departmental goals, quickly answer customer questions, settle disputes, cover if someone is out sick, fill in if a staff member leaves, etc.
Additional Reading: Customer communication is key to turn those unpaid invoices into cash
Account Escalation: What happens when a customer is facing bankruptcy or simply refuses to pay an invoice due a dispute or cash flow problems? There are occasions when it’s necessary to escalate an account to management for higher-level discussions or turn the invoice over to third party collections agency. In these cases, credit managers need tools to identify troubled accounts and realign credit and collection activities to other employees or third party firms.
Escalating cases to internal employees is difficult if you don’t have a centralized system to store notes and communications related to the account and recent credit and collection efforts. It can be even more difficult if this information needs to be shared with an external, third party agent. If you do have all of that information in one location it is much easier for the person taking over the account to quickly get up to speed and continue their efforts for collection, not waste time getting caught up.
Team management: Credit managers need to effectively manage their teams. The first step is to identify which resources are available, how much time they spend on certain activities, and their results. When you utilize a credit and collection system credit managers have access to all of that information and more to help strategically assign accounts, track progress, and report on key performance indicators and activities performed by their team members on an individual level and departmental level. For example, a credit manager may hold collection representatives accountable for placing a specific number of phone calls each day or week or maintaining a defined level of outstanding receivables which aligns to key performance indicators.
Implementing a system that will help you centralize your credit and collection data provide a solid platform for collaboration and has made a huge difference for many of our customers.
If you want more insight on on the benefits of credit and collection management software please contact Anytime Collect Israel for a free demo of Anytime Collect.
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