Last time I discussed ways you can get paid faster that centered on invoicing and payments. Today I want to take a closer look at how to bring payments in sooner by using reports and other features in QuickBooks to help get paid faster.
- Monitor Your Accounts Receivable – There are several reports and tools in QuickBooks that can help you.
- A/R reports – Under Reports>Customers & Receivables, there are several reports. My personal favorites are the A/R Aging Summary and the Open Invoices. What are yours?
- Snapshot – The Company Snapshot can quickly alert you to those who are past due – they will show in red. (Don’t have that in your Snapshot? Click on Company>Company Snapshot or right-click on the Icon bar, then click Add and select Snapshots.)
- Income Tracker – The Income Tracker can quickly let you see how many invoices are past due and who owes. And seeing a dollar amount for unbilled time & expenses will motivate you even faster ;-)
- Customer Center – In the Customer center, you can quickly filter to see who owes, but if you want to see who’s almost due or who’s past due, you can customize the center to include those fields. Simply right-click on the list and select Customize Columns. Then select the ones you want to see and move them in the desired order. You can choose when an invoice would be considered Almost Due in the Reminders section of the Company Preferences.
- Send out reminders –
- Before the invoice is due. If you have the Overdue column showing in your QuickBooks, you can quickly see the Almost Due (in yellow) or use your Collection Center to see who’s Almost Due and send reminders from there. (If you don’t see the Collection Center, click on Edit>Preferences then Enable Collections Center found on the Company Preferences tab.)
- Send out reminders just after the invoice is due. You can use the Income Tracker or the Collection Center to help you email reminders
- AUTOMATIC reminders is a great feature in Bill and Pay– it will automatically send out those notices for you – both before and after the invoice is due, saving many of you LOTS of time! (Be sure to use MUIRASSOC if you want to test it out).
- Monitor collections. I prefer the Collection Center over the Income Tracker because it shows both the Overdue as well as Almost Due, lists all the invoices (number, amount due, days overdue), phone number and notes with a link to email a notice. But the Income Tracker is a great tool – you can filter by overdue invoices, sort and send out. If you “lost” your Collection Center, you can turn that back on in the Company Preferences under Sales and Customers.
- Shift to more fast-paying customers. Use the Average Days to Pay to help you sort through who’s slow and who’s fast. (Reports>Customers & Receivables>Average Days to Pay). You can export the report out to Excel and sort on the average days to pay – might be a real eye-opener! Slowly (or maybe not so slowly!) drop your slow pay customers (or change their terms). If you have prepayments and shorter terms (like due on receipt or net 10 or net 15), that should definitely improve the average days to pay. While it might be somewhat tough to change older customers, your new customers won’t know any different.
Hopefully collections isn’t an issue for your company, but if it is, then these suggestions should help you get paid faster. Would love to hear which tip(s) you liked best!