Business & Customer Relationship – Processes To Obtain Prompt Payments

At the outset of any business relationship with your customer it’s important that you know exactly who it is that you intend to trade with. Having the right account procedures in place at the beginning of your business relationship is crucial in giving your company the best protection in being able to obtain prompt invoice payments.

Procedures to obtain on-time business payments

Before offering any sort of credit, it is imperative that you undertake due diligence checks on your potential customer. Checks should include, but are not limited to:

  • Credit searches.
  • Proof of the company’s recent accounts.
  • Proof of address.
  • Referees (that are verified).
  • If dealing with a limited company, where it is possible to do so, consider obtaining a Directors’ Guarantee.
  • Ensure that the entity you are in the business agreement with is the one placing the orders. Be vigilant that a subsidiary or sister company does not try to place orders.

Many businesses will accept verbal orders for goods/services over the telephone or in person but without keeping a clear record of who placed the order on behalf of your customer and also often without obtaining a signature/proof of identity. If this information is not captured at the outset and payment of invoices is queried it is up to you to prove who had the benefit of the goods supplied. Obtaining a signature with a printed name of who placed the order could prove the difference between being paid or not.

Another obstacle businesses may face when trying to recover payment of invoices is proving that the goods were delivered. Proof of delivery should always be obtained by the delivery driver. A signature alone is not sufficient, the delivery driver should insist that the recipient of the goods signs and clearly prints their name on the delivery note.

How Nelsons can help

There are few businesses who are debt free, but following the above tips will help ensure you are pursuing the correct party in the event of non-payment.

Should you require any assistance with recovering a business debt, please contact a member of our expert Debt Recovery team in Derby, Leicester or Nottingham on 0800 024 1976 or via our online enquiry form.

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