Managing Accounts Receivable in a Down Market

In today’s economy one of the most challenging issues is collecting on outstanding debts. Many companies are just in survival mode, stacking one bill on top another, and yours is at the bottom of the pile. If your small business is anything like mine, you probably don’t have the resources to hire personnel for collections, short of a baseball bat. In all seriousness though, if hiring another employee is out of the question, consider deputizing an existing employee to call your customers for 3 purposes:

1) Follow ups

2) Try and get return orders

3) Collections

In a small business the efficient use of existing personnel for collections of accounts receivable can make a world of difference. A business owner I know, with a little coaching, started having his delivery runner make calls in his downtime and was amazed at some of the sales he made, and people he was able to collect from.

As a naive business owner, I was seeing my accounts receivable grow, proud of myself on the sales I had accomplished. Not realizing you haven’t made the money till you get paid and cash is king. There is a saying for this I have now come to understand “one in the hand is better than two in the bush”.

Andrew Baker

CSUF Entrepreneurship Graduate


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