3 Tips for Making Collection Calls on Past Due Invoices

Few situations are more stressful than making collection calls on past due invoices. Delicately explaining that money is due is a tricky dance which few people can step to effectively. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes.
Most people pride themselves on making prompt payments so any past due invoices are usually the result of a miscommunication or money troubles. Having compassion for your client can make the situation easier to deal with.

Be Pleasant

But Firm Making collection calls is pretty much an energy game. You need to be nice but firm and direct to reach your end goal. Being too nice turns you into a pushover who rarely collects on the debt owed you. Resist the urge to be nasty and forceful. Since force negates you will either scare off late paying customers or start a verbal brawl which leads to a terrible outcome.
Be pleasant but persistent in asking for the money owed to your firm. Practice being present.

If your mind races to feeling

  • Angry
  • Annoyed
  • Feeling bad

about being direct simply move your focus back to the present moment and address the individual on the other side of the phone in a polite but firm manner.

Offer Options

to Put Your Customer at Ease Offering multiple options to late paying customers often results in the desired outcome. Consider offering installment payments so the customer can chip into their debt over time without worrying about how to wrangle a large sum of cash quickly. By providing your client with options to pay the amount due you can ease their worries and fortify their trust in you and your organization.
Establish good will to build your relationship. Remember that most businesses suffer through financial struggles at one time or another.

Giving People Options

To pay back the money owed can benefit you in the long run. Today’s struggling small business can become tomorrow’s mega successful empire. You never know
How the good karma you dole out
Will flow back to you so treat your customer with dignity by working with them to collect.
Never Assume Avoid
The urge to jump to conclusions during your collection phone call. Make the initial phone call to confirm that the debt has yet to be paid. Do not make any assumptions or reach a conclusion as to why or how the situation arose.

Strengthen Relationships

With good customers by realizing that the unpaid bill might be the result of a miscommunication. Maybe the invoice was not sent or received, or the product might have shipped incorrectly or a member of the sales team may have made an unwise promise. In any case, one of many reasons might have led to the first collection phone call.

Keeping Open Channels

Of communication and resisting any rush to judgment can help you keep customers happy and prompt with their payments. Mention that you have seen the customer was behind on the invoice and ask whether or not they had a problem with this bill.
Put the ball in your customer’s court to alleviate any stress or anger and diffuse any potentially volatile situations concerning late payment.

Cash Flow Woes?

If things like extending credit, and late paying customers are causing cash flow issues, you might consider receivables financing. In this scenario, companies front you the money for your invoices—typically at least 80 percent upfront— and

Collect payment directly from your client.
Upon receiving the money, you will get the remainder. This service, of course, comes with a fee, so you must weigh the benefits of immediate cash infusion against not receiving the full payment.

Robbert Whitticker

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