Five Ways to Speed Up Business Cash Flow

Written by William von Achen

Continued from page 1

Shorten Your Payment Terms: Most accounts payable departments schedule your payment based onrepparttar terms printed on your invoice. If you provide 30-day terms, don’t expect to get paid before then. However, many customers won’t even notice if you change your payment terms to 15 days, or request payment upon receipt of your invoice. You’ll still have to nudgerepparttar 147211 same “slow pays,” but your good accounts will probably process your invoice more quickly.

Accept Credit Cards For Payment: This isn’t really a no-cost method, since you’ll have to pay a service fee torepparttar 147212 bank that clearsrepparttar 147213 transaction. But, you’ll get paid within days and eliminate much ofrepparttar 147214 clerical support required to follow up on payment. Those savings alone often more than offsetrepparttar 147215 service charges. And, your customers might even thank you forrepparttar 147216 frequent flier miles they pick up by using their credit card.

There is, of course, one other important way to quickly generate cash for your business, and that is to increase your attention to sales. In all but a handful of cases, increased sales will make cash flow problems disappear.

William von Achen is president of Strategic Management Resources, an executive coaching and management consulting firm offering advice and counsel to business owners and senior executives. For more information visit our web site at

7 Steps to Successful Telecom Audit Preparation

Written by Karen Thatcher

Continued from page 1

Completerepparttar organization of your project by assigning priorities; definerepparttar 147210 sequence in which each will be studied, then assign responsibilities to each staff member or person involved inrepparttar 147211 audit.

Step # 4: Gather Customer Information

The next step is to gather information contained on two main sources: bills and contracts. Some situations may require examination of more specialized information. For now, we will focus on these two items.

All relavent bills must be obtained, whether monthly, quarterly, annual or intermittent. It is advised that 2-3 months ofrepparttar 147212 most recent bills be collected. Be sure to collect ALL bills that you have defined inrepparttar 147213 "size and scope" step above. These may include bills and contracts from:

*Local Exchange Carriers (LECs) *Interexchange Carriers (IXCs) *Competitive Local Exchange Carriers (CLECs) *Directory Advertising *Leased or Equipment Rental *Maintenance or Service Agreements *Answering Services *Wireless/Paging Bills

Step # 5: Obtain Supplier Information

To complete a thorough audit or cost-reduction study, very specific information and data may be required fromrepparttar 147214 carriers and vendors. These may include:

*Customer Service Records (CSRs) *Nomenclature Translation (for USOC's or other items on CSR) *Rates/Tariff Pages *Duplicate Bills

Step # 6: Organize and Display Data

There are two reasons for systematically organizing and displayingrepparttar 147215 information that has been collected up to this point. 1) The process ensures that each cost element is considered, and 2) it directs future analyses intorepparttar 147216 most promising areas for cost-saving opportunities. The following types of data displays will be useful in many studies:

*Summary of Billed Accounts *Circuit Inventory *Inventory Forms *Calling Analyses *Private-line Summaries

Byrepparttar 147217 time you have organized and displayed collected data, your hypotheses list should have many items that now must be tested. Testing many of these will require a certain amount of surveys with users, although much ofrepparttar 147218 information you’ll need will be contained within CSRs andrepparttar 147219 actual telecom bills.

About the author: Karen Thatcher is President and CEO of TelCon Associates, a 32 yr. old telecom audit and bill management company. For free tools and help in reducing your corporate telecom expenses, visit for more information.

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