Do you really control credit?
Businesses have leant the hard way, it is not only the new customers that need vetting, but existing customers also need to be reviewed by getting the paperwork right.
- Ensure that you have all the correct contact details for your customer, and you have an account form and your terms and conditions signed by an approved signatory.
- Confirm that the account has been set up correctly on your data system, with payment terms and any discounts, if agreed.
- Get to know your customers payment patterns and methods, any reasons for non payment, and who the decision makers are.
- Building a rapport with your customer is important for you to build a lasting business relationship and always listen to any problems they may have with your service or products, and ensure that you follow up their complaints and report back to them,
- Review their accounts on a regular fortnightly basis, and check that the payment terms are being adhered to. If not, contact them to enquire why.
- It is much better to talk less and listen to a customer more to understand their business.
- Always be professional and courteous, whether you are running a large company or a one man business operation.
The basis for business has not changed over the years and all the above is nothing new. Credit control should be instilled into all new businesses and reviewed in existing businesses regularly as credit control is not only about collecting money. It can also be used to advise and benefit your customers; and in the long run benefit you to build a good and successful business.