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DIY Self Help Toolkit to chasing Late and Overdue Invoices

Firstly, if your in a position where your now chasing for invoices overdue then you may have missed some integral steps to prevent you reaching this position. We will take a look at some tips and methods to help you effectively manage your invoicing system.

Before we do, Invoicey does offer a free invoice ledger management system which has inbuilt AI and Automations to prevent all the manual hassle which goes into chasing outstanding invoices. The Invoicey ledger also helps you manage credit control more effectively by implementing checks and balances to potentially limit your exposure to potential late payment offenders.

Establish a first point of contact and a second point of contact within your business customer accounts payable or finance department. For medium sized and large businesses they will have a designated department specifically to deal with finance and invoicing matters, with usually at least one member of staff assigned to accounts payable. For smaller businesses this could be a General Finance Manager or (Finance) Director. Either way always get a full name, email address and telephone number (if possible) and send a direct email copying in all designated staff to establish contact. Don’t leave this any later than the first 7 days and make sure your email is cordial and friendly; Simply confirm they have received the invoice and that it includes all the correct information to ensure there will be no delays. Always ensure that your set your email to include a “Read Receipt” and kindly ask them to acknowledge receipt of email – that way there can be no ambiguity that they have not received the email or that it is was “misdirected to spam.”

Send another email reminder on the 14th day and 21st day, again ensure the tone of the email is polite and friendly simply reminding them of the invoice due date. This can all be automated via the Invoicey Ledger, or you can simply send a manual email via your own internal system. Our Automated emails can include a payment link to encourage your business customer to make quick and easy payment or a include “early payment discount incentive.” Be sure to add a polite, clear and firm clause within the email referencing the Late Payments Act 2013 and then Interest and Compensation will be sought if invoices are paid late. Keep this clause separate from the rest of your email and ensure it is clear and concise.

Send a last payment reminder 1 day before due. The Tone of this email again should be kept cordial and encouraging though you may now wish to allude to the consequences of late invoice payments invoking automatic late fee invoice compensation, accruing interest and additional administrative costs. Though be sure to add with regrets to ensure your business customer understands that this isn’t something you wish to do but will resort to if the balance is not cleared within time.

Once the Invoice is overdue and you have taken all the necessary steps to communicate with your business customer then firmly and politely send a follow-up email to inform your business customer that your commercial invoice is now accruing interest will incur a compensatory charge and admin fee which will be totalled up once the initial invoice has been settled. Always ensure that the tone of your email is regrettable but polite and be encouraging as you possibly can to persuade them to paying at the earliest possible payment date. It is also worth requesting for a firm payment date and to also include another colleague or member of staff by copying them into the email chain to show that this matter has now been elevated to the next step and more eyes are now engaged with this matter.

Always ensure that the emails you send are sent at regular intervals within business working hours, usually in morning hours so that they have the whole day to address your issue. Add a contact number too to each email and always be willing to offer verbal dialogue with your business customer, after all you probably want to maintain a positive and lasting business relationship so always be willing to talk directly. Try and be understanding but never accept delaying tactics and always maintain your initial stance of your original invoice due date. Any grace you do provide them should be with a firm written agreement of the date they intend to pay and that it is by no means a willingness on your part to therefore change the agreement going forward to suit them by extending payment terms.

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