There’s nothing more frustrating for a business owner than doing the work, but not getting paid.
So many business owners that I come across are time poor. They spend the day out on the road, completing all the tasks they have for customers, only to come home at the end of a long day with hours of invoicing ahead of them. Many are too tired or have family commitments, so the invoicing gets delayed. Sometimes delays can be a day, a week, or longer. The good intentions to get the invoicing done are there, but the time to do it just isn’t.
Invoice on the spot
When I see my clients struggle with this, the first thing I point them to is MYOB Pay Direct.
Right there on their smartphone, my clients can invoice their customers and email the invoice directly to them. On the spot! No more having to wait until they get home in front of their computers.
MYOB Pay Direct also allows them to take payment there and then. It’s so much simpler to invoice customers as soon as the job is done, and take the payment and sync to their MYOB accounting software all at the same time.
Cash flow is generally tight for most business owners
Being able to invoice on the road means you can start collecting your income sooner.
If you wait a while to send an invoice, the recipient may get the idea that it isn’t that important to you. They will then make it lower on their priority list for payment. It is human nature.
By having clear payment terms on your invoices, and by sending them in a timely fashion, you are giving the message that it is important to you, and consequently to them that they make payment by the due date.
Build great relationships with your customers
No matter what industry you are in, you are in the business of great relationships with your customers. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if there was never a need for questioning your invoices or awkward debt collection conversations?
Follow these easy steps to make sure your accounts are just a by-product of these great relationships – instead of the catalyst to damaging them.
- Email your invoices so that you can be sure your customer receives it quickly and there is no chance of it being lost.
- Reduce any reason for confusion or dispute with your invoicing. Make sure you use full descriptions so that there is little room for the invoice to be queried. Discussions or confusion will only delay payment.
- Offer your customers a range of payment methods.
- Invoice quickly and perhaps offer incentives for early payment – perhaps a discount should they pay within a shorter period of time.
- If you find a customer hasn’t completed payment in time, take the time to have a conversation about it with them. Find out if they are having some problems of their own you may not be aware of. Make them feel heard.
Keep a close eye on your receivables report
Keep a close watch on your receivables report. In our practice, we watch our clients’ receivables on a weekly basis. If a customer hasn’t paid, we deal with it quickly. Discovering a problem a month after the fact is disastrous for cash flow – and relationships.
Treat your invoicing and receivables as a priority and you will find that your customers will do the same.
Activate bank feeds to save you time reconciling
Close the cash flow gap by reconciling your transactions with bank feeds. Bank feeds capture the debits and credits from your bank account and drop them into your MYOB online accounting software. It helps save you valuable time by reducing data entry and assisting with eliminating possible data entry errors.