Create Efficiencies in Accounts Receivables
We know from the Fall 2009 results of the American Express OPEN Small Business Monitor that 60% of the entrepreneurs surveyed are experiencing cash flow issues, with their biggest cash flow worry being the ability to pay bills on time. In a down economy, customers can take longer to pay you, and this can mean less available cash to pay your own bills.
Creating more efficiencies in your accounts receivables – such as through expedited invoicing and electronic payments – can help you get paid faster. Using an automated invoicing and receivables solution can help with both creating those efficiencies and managing customer relationships. This will not only become critical as more and more businesses move toward electronic payments, it could also be a selling point to potential customers who may appreciate having that option. It also benefits your bottom line by limiting your exposure to late payments.
Maximize Your Payments
Be Proactive with Financial Services Partners
The economy has increased the importance for business owners to take certain, proactive steps toward building more flexibility and security into their businesses. Establishing access to credit, even though it may not be currently needed, can help when surprises arise. It’s better to secure the credit early, because when you really need it, your business may not appear as attractive to lenders.
You can also be proactive in developing close relationships with your financial services providers, letting them know in advance of the changes that may affect your business. For example, if you see that customers are taking longer to pay you, your providers may be able to work with you to identify potential solutions before you miss payments.
If you have any questions or suggestions for additional topics, please leave a comment below or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I also encourage you to visit the American Express OPEN Women’s Business Summit Web site to learn more about the event, taking place Feb. 17-18 in Dallas, and the speakers, which include Gail Blanke, Founder and CEO of Lifedesigns, and my colleague Sophia Lundberg, Vice President of Marketing, American Express OPEN.