Tackling Late Payment Tips
- The computers are not working; the server is down; we have changed over computer systems … These could all well be true. Ask how serious the problem is.
- Point out that all your other clients have manual payment methods in place.
- We never got the invoice. That’s an easy one: just email another one, along with a duplicate of the original. Remind the debtor that you always issue invoices on time and ask them to contact you if any are missing in the future.
- The person who signs the cheques is away. Most companies have two people who sign the cheques. Ask them to authorise the bank to pay the cheque with just one signature. If this is just a diversion tactic, try getting under their guard: ring early in the morning or late at night, or through a different department, and ask to be transferred.
- Our practice is to pay bills once a month. So you’ll have to wait. Point out the terms agreed to, email them a copy and call again.
- You must send original invoices or we don’t pay. Send them a copy of the original, signed and dated.
- We’re busy dealing with more important things. Set a time to ring back
- The cheque’s in the mail. Wait a few days and follow up again. This time ask for the cheque number. Confirm it has been sent to the right address and to the right person. This might spring payment, just to stop you asking pesky questions.
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