Did you know that you can achieve a certain level of Security with A/R Collections Software? Securing financial information is critical to all businesses – especially those who need to comply with Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) requirements. Sarbanes-Oxley is a bill that was enacted as a reaction to a number of major corporate and accounting scandals. The legislation set new or enhanced standards for all U.S. public company boards, management and public accounting firms. It does not apply to privately held companies. However, many SOX requirements represent good business practices for smaller, privately-owned companies. Section 404 of SOX outlines requirements related to the scope and adequacy of internal controls and procedures for financial reporting. Continue reading
Is there anything out there for Credit and Collections Management for SMB ‘s ?
Most CCM applications are expensive and were designed to work with tier one ERP business applications like SAP and Oracle, but Credit and Collections Management for SMB ‘s is important too. Some independent software vendors have developed rudimentary collections modules that integrate to a specific accounting system but there are very few systems available that provide best-of-breed CCM functionality, integrate with multiple accounting systems, and provide a low total cost of ownership. Continue reading
The Credit Research Foundation estimates that only 20% of credit departments have formalized policies. Many companies struggle to formalize policies due to ad-hoc credit management from salespeople, lack of critical financial information, or simply due to time constraints and higher priority projects. During this 30 minute webinar we will walk you through six easy steps to developing a world class credit policy and collections action plan to help you gain significant advantages in your business, such as: Continue reading
Utility companies are some of the most vulnerable enterprises in the United States when it comes to debt. A recent assessment of the risk incurred by utilities found that, because of their increased dealings with consumers who are more likely to default on payments, these companies may face more debt-recovery issues. Unlike many businesses, some utility companies are faced with an obligation to extend service to anyone who requests it, regardless of their credit risk. In addition, individuals who fail to pay utility bills may be more likely to face collections from a variety of creditors, creating stiff competition for utilities attempting to recoup their losses.
Further exasperating this issue is the increasing cost of doing business. Global consulting firm Strategy& reported that capital expenditure requirements for the country’s utilities are expected to grow to more than $100 billion annually through 2020. The need to improve aging infrastructure represents a large portion of these costs.
With rising costs, an ever-growing customer base and increasing debt, utility companies need to streamline their collections processes as much as any enterprise. According to Intelligent Utility, more businesses in this sector are implementing statistical analysis tools to facilitate these efforts. Statistical payment behavior modeling can help utility companies predict a number of factors regarding current and potential customers, including the likelihood of nonpayment, resorting to shutting off service or a payment transfer failing to be completed. With these resources, utility companies can determine which clients represent better investments.
Businesses can also use the statistical payment behavior modeling to enhance their collections strategy and reduce their costs. By identifying payment issues before they become serious, utility companies can take the necessary steps to mitigate their risk. In addition, companies can implement stricter collections policies up front for customers who have been designated as payment risks. Using comprehensive credit collections software, utilities can reduce their risk of customer delinquency.
The issue of debt has become a topic of major discussion in the United States as of late. From the local to the federal level, communities and government agencies have struggled to balance budgets. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the federal government will report a deficit of $845 billion in 2013. The functionality of the United States government will not be greatly affected by these numbers, but many smaller communities do not have that luxury. The city of Martinsville, Virginia, for instance, has made budget cuts to many of its departments, programs and staff over the last few years. Reductions in law enforcement and fire department staff were made because of budget constraints, according to a government report. The Virginia Local Government Management Association found that 76 positions had been cut over the past two years, with upwards of 30 or more to follow through the end of the financial year.
One area in which the city could increase its revenue stream is by collecting overdue debts. The Martinsville Bulletin reported that the city had yet to collect on approximately $450,000 and $210,000 in utility bills and business license fees, respectively. According to city officials, the number of unpaid business license fees have been on the rise, possibly due to recent procedural changes that have focused less on taking delinquent account holders to court.
For organizations that struggle with collecting unpaid debts, employing credit collections software may be a viable solution. Government officials and company executives alike can track debt collection procedures and ensure that payments are being made on a timely basis. Sophisticated software can provide businesses and organizations with the resources to monitor every phase of collection management, from phone and email correspondences to invoicing. By utilizing these tools, businesses and agencies can greatly enhance their debt collection efforts.
Date: March 15, 2013
Time: 1:00pm EST-2:00pm EST
This webinar will share the “17 Secrets of Credit and Collections Management”
Learn how to:
- extend the accounts receivable module in your existing ERP system
- effectively manage credit and collections activities
- Get integrated reporting and business metrics to help you build a world-class organization
And much more
March 11, 2013, Chardon, Ohio- Today, e2b teknologies announced Anytime Collect, the company’s accounts receivable credit and collections management software application, is now available on the Windows 8 App Marketplace. Anytime Collect Executive Dashboard for Windows 8 is designed for corporate executives, controllers, credit and collections professionals, and sales representatives providing users with a profile of a business’ accounts receivable and overall financial health for busy executive and financial professionals on the go. Continue reading
In just one year Systems Maintenance Services, a global provider of IT and Managed Services reduced their Days Sales Outstanding (DSO) by 40% and collected more cash than they invoiced! This presentation from Paystream Advisors and e2b teknologies will discuss the Accounts Receivable Crisis, recent trends in Revenue Cycle Management, profiles in success featuring Systems Maintenance Services, tips and best practices, and a discussion of how integrated systems can put your accounts receivable collections on auto pilot. Continue reading
Each PayStream report contains in depth profiles on top automation software, industry case studies, the latest research and data, and tips how to choose the right solution for your company.
This whitepaper will help you: Continue reading
Companies that are using debt collections software may be able to get even better results when looking at analytics via their program. One company said it is using software to boost segment accounts, calibrate scores and increase response times via performance updates, all of which should promote a quicker turnaround from customers that owe a business money.
InsideARM reported on one process that, after being improved, allowed users to get results from analytics reduced from three days to 15 minutes, which can help protect brands and create more leeway to how a company does business. One major client of this process said it collected an additional $265,000 from the advanced model and is seeing even better results.
“Our [programs using this system] have enabled me to compile a large volume of data in a short time, to analyze performance over time and to evaluate trends,” one professional said. “This methodology has saved me hours of compilation time and IT resources.”
A previous story on InsideARM said that with a larger pool to collect from, there is more need for businesses to use analytics to their advantage to be sure to get the maximum results from money owed. Having collections software with these capabilities can be a great step in the right direction.
It never used to be a big problem, but hospitals and other medical offices now have to worry about whether patients will be paying their debts. Formerly, insurance companies took care of most of this, but as co-pays have gotten higher, so has the payment collections burden hospitals have had to taken on. Record Net said one hospital is thinking about using a private collection agency to collect the $381 million in bad debt from patients, but healthcare organizations and other companies should consider investing in debt collections software to make sure they are staying on top of what they are owed instead of letting it build up.
“These are bills racked up by people who could pay them, officials said,” according to the news source. “The hospital does provide healthcare to those who can’t afford to pay for it. But those aren’t the hospital’s only patients, which includes people who have insurance or money to pay their bills.”
The chief financial officer of the hospital said the bills are sitting in accounts receivable gathering dust. They are considering putting the money out to bid to a collections company, but they still have yet to work out that detail in full.
Healthcare Finance News said healthcare organizations must realize what the times are and communicate with patients as much as possible. One healthcare professional in Chicago said she believes this communication is the missing piece.
“It seems that some hospitals still use the traditional approach of sending out a billing statement right away to a patient,” this healthcare pro said. “The patient often has no idea what their statement means because it’s just a summary of what he or she owes and they are usually blown away by the price they see. There’s no communication and that’s one of the missing pieces in the whole equation. Collections, in and of itself, are a very volatile and emotional thing. Coming from a hospital, it takes it makes it that much worse - it’s very sensitive.”
Collections software may be a helpful way to communicate payment information via email and lessen the blow of the bill to patients.
While some companies use debt collections software to help get back the money they are owed, many don’t focus on building credit themselves. Survival Guide For Small Business said organizations ignore or don’t think about their credit score, a vital part of being able to expand down the road. Having good software to keep a revenue stream coming in is essential, but small business owners cannot forget about their borrowing.
“This is the perfect time to focus on your business credit score as the economy starts to recover,” the website said. “Banks are starting to ease on making small business loans and consumers are starting to spend more money. The first thing you need to do is to check what your business credit report. Make it a habit to check it once or twice a year. You should schedule this, just as you would schedule your taxes and other business reports.”
If there are any errors or misinformation on the report, companies should take immediate steps to fix it. Additionally, they should sign up for credit alerts and have a system to manage how they work with credit.
The Small Business Administration said another part of having good credit is monitoring their customers’ and vendors’ credit as well, as this will help businesses understand how much they can extend beyond their own company.
“Knowing the credit of customers enables small businesses to provide better terms to credit worthy customers and avoid doing business with customers who pay slowly – both of which can lead to improved cash flow,” the SBA said on its website.
While having good collections software is one way a business can work to keep up with the credit of customers, keeping track of their own score and making sure there are no issues is important to keep a business moving in a positive direction.
Smaller companies and entrepreneurs always need to make sure they are on the right track with their finances. No matter what kind of business it is, new technology such as accounts receivable and debt collections software can be used to keep a business more aware and on top of their financial goals. Fox Business said companies should be making resolutions for the new year to continue to improve, including keeping more accurate financial records, which software can certainly help with.
“Maintaining accurate financial records is not only a good practice, it is also essential to those seeking business expansion funding in 2013,” the website said. “Sales revenues, tax statements and other financial records are proof of the soundness of your business. Financial institutions will base their decisions on such data. Further, lenders will want to examine this financial information in a timely manner; getting back to them slowly on a request might be an indication you are not up-to-date with your record-keeping.”
Keeping up with the past year’s receivables, collections and other financial records can help a company plan for what type of year they will have in 2013, Fox Business said.
Other financial resolutions the news source said could be helpful include:
- Be sure to pay taxes as quickly as possible to make sure everything is squared away
- Cut costs of capital by looking at which areas can be fixed to benefit the company
- Always use software and predictions to look into the future and see what may be in store for the business
Financial adviser Randy Flatt told the Memphis Business Journal that he has been using financial software for the past couple of years and it has been helpful in showing where there may be gaps in a client’s wealth. Even a program like debt collections software can help point out and help fix areas where a company is missing revenue.
While the legal industry has been historically averse to new technology, this may no longer be a viable way to go as a small law firm, according to Minnesota Lawyer. The COO at a Portland, Oregon-based law group said that law schools haven’t done a great job of teaching lawyers how to be better businessmen and work with finances, so tools like accounts receivable software could be a great way for attorneys to be sure they are on top of billing and other financial aspects of the business.
The director of one state bar association told the website that small business lawyers should focus on creating a “technology-oriented” environment to save money and help procure clients that would normally visit larger firms. One suggestion she had would be to bill as early as possible. Lawyers should also be using billing software to help keep track who who owes them money and who may be late.
“Have a time and billing program,” the legal professional told Minnesota Lawyer. [Attorneys] can enter their time easily, edit it easily and produce a bill easily. … Ask [clients] when is best. If you send the bill when the client has the money to pay … they will pay you.”
Other tips from the website include:
- Procure a financial management system to help utilize features for watching the books, something that other attorneys likely do not have
- Get as much paperwork online and in electronic form as possible
- Use talent already in place for this software by training them
AmericanBar.org said firms should ask themselves how effective their policies and procedures are in handing accounts receivable, if the firm should be able to cut costs and what tools are being used. Accounts receivable software could be a great way to go for a smaller law firm in need of a new and improved billing solution.