For businesses that aren't running Chronicle, collections are often poorly managed at best. Collections often gets neglected until cash flow gets low, and even when it's done, it's time consuming, and documentation rarely makes it into the job file. Chronicle makes the process easier, faster, and more complete in many ways.
For Chronicle to be able to manage your collections, it must be linked to QuickBooks.
|Typical Collections Process without Chronicle
|Collections Process with Chronicle
Collections gets neglected until cash flow gets low.
Chronicle keeps you on top of the collections process; you know the status of all invoices before you have a problem.
1. The manager or collections person must ask accounting for a receivable's list. Apart from this, the manager has no way of knowing which of his customers/adjustors are paying or not paying.
1. The Collections Manager gives each manager or collections person immediate access to receivables without needing to go to anyone from accounting. You can immediately identify past due invoices, and you can filter out date ranges, invoices for an adjuster, and more.
|2. You call each customer on the list; phone numbers may not be with the list; so you have to look them up.
|2. You call each customer on the list; phone numbers are on the screen for each person responsible for payment. All job & contact info is only a click away, and emails to responsible people require just a click.
|3. The adjustor doesn't have your documents, so you must fax them again; each fax takes an average of 17 minutes (based on national average).
|3. The adjustor doesn't have your documents, so you resend them; this takes less than 30 seconds.
|4. You make notes on the receivable's list, but the notes never actually make it into the job file. Or, if you have a collections file for each job, you add notes to each file, but you spent a considerable amount of time handling the various files.
|4. You add notes directly in the Collections Manager: they immediately become a permanent part of the job's record.
|5. Your notes get lost, or perhaps they're just intermingled with other notes that don't require follow up, so you don't have any clear record of who you need to follow up with.
|5. Chronicle's financial follow up dates remind you of who needs to be followed up with and when. Highlight invoices without recent notes in the Collections Manager lets you easily find invoices that have been neglected.
|6. Since you no longer have your notes, you start from scratch the next time you're making collections calls. Your previous notes don't help you follow up, and aren't available as documentation if you ever have to take this to court.
|6. The complete record of what's been done when is always with the job; all information is at hand in the collections manager if you need to follow up again. And if you ever have to take a case to court, you have strong, detailed documentation of everything that you've done.
In addition saving significant amounts of time and maintaining the documentation you need if you ever need to go to court, Chronicle offers a number of other advantages that improve the collections process:
Placing responsibility on the departmental managers: Chronicle makes continually updated receivable information available to managers, so each manager is able to track the jobs for his or her department. (Without Chronicle, managers don't usually even know which jobs have or haven't been paid until the accounting department indicates there's a problem.) This puts the collections responsibility in the hands of the manager who knows the adjustors, the customer, and what went on with the job. The manager who's been dealing with the job all along is often the most efficient person to have him go after the money for those jobs.
Identifying and following up on departments with collection problems: When you start to look at the number of days out for your invoices, you'll typically find that certain departments are much better than others. For example, water and fire damage jobs are usually easier to collect on, but packout jobs might take longer. Suppose your average invoice is 45 days out. If you looked at this by department, you might find that water was 30, fire was 32, and construction and packout jobs were 70. What do you do with this? Ask the managers of the construction and packout jobs to begin following up on their jobs at 25 days out. By following up earlier on the jobs that have the greatest potential for delays, you improve response times and thus improve your overall cash flow. Chronicle's ability to list collections information by department makes this easy to do.
Marking problematic invoices for special follow-up: Chronicle lets you mark specific invoices with collection problems. You can use comments, collections activities, notes, and follow up dates.