Small businesses have been hit hard in these times of COVID-19. So many are trying to stay afloat, but are facing big challenges due to clients that cannot pay their bills on time. Here are a few practical suggestions for maximizing your collections efforts.
Understand that Everyone is in the Same Boat
The financial effects of the pandemic have affected people at all levels. And while your business might be suffering, it is important to remember that others are likely going through the same thing. So if there is a way to be flexible, by providing a slight extension on a due date, for example, it might pay off when trying to collect. Clients that have always paid their bills promptly may just need a little extra time to get the payment to you and would probably appreciate the willingness to accommodate them.
Try Multiple Channels of Contact
Business structures are very different right now. Many employees are working from home and are not as organized as they are when in the office. If your emails have gone unanswered, try calling instead. And unfortunately many employees have been laid off, so the person you thought was your collections contact may not be anymore. Don’t be afraid to go up the chain of command to get to the right person.
Try Renegotiating Payment Terms
It would not be fair to expect you to completely release a client from their obligation to your company, but it might be beneficial to all involved to alter the original terms of their payment to you. Perhaps providing a payment plan that would allow your client to pay in smaller increments over time instead of one lump sum would be a viable option. Another option might be to forgive the accrued fees or interest in order to allow the client to pay in full.
Get Help When Your Efforts Have Failed
As a business owner you should try to preserve your good clients whenever possible. Showing them flexibility now, when times are hard, will go a long way in securing their loyalty as a customer in the future. Of course, trying to settle past due debt can be difficult, and your collections efforts may not always yield the results you were hoping for. When legal action needs to be taken, Churchill, Quinn, Richtman & Hamilton, Ltd is the right choice for representation. Our firm has extensive experience and expertise in collections litigation and can help your company recover the money that is owed to you. Contact our office at 847-223-1500 to make an appointment with our team.
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