Payments can often be late, for many different reasons.
Of course, it’s important to encourage payment on time. Start by making it easy for customers to pay you.
Offer alternative ways to pay
- Credit Card
- Bank Transfer
- On Account
- Direct Debit.
- Include your bank sort code and account number on all customer invoices and statements so they don’t have to go looking for it when they wish to make a payment
- Send monthly statements as a prompt and so that they can check and query issues early
- Consider offering early settlement discounts.
Causes of problems
Try and spot issues before they become insurmountable. Customers will generally pay a supplier’s invoices in order, so if they miss one in a payment run, investigate why.
- Do they have a copy of the invoice
- Did they receive the goods or service
- Were they happy with them.
Good Communication Is Key
At the beginning agree the terms of the contract if possible in writing. Agree the rate for the job and the type of product service expected to be supplied. For large and expensive items it maybe necessary to do a credit check and obtain references.
Try and be polite and supportive at all times. Discuss with the clients where the problems are and why there is no payment forthcoming. Use the legal options of redress as a last resort.