As an accounts receivable manager, you’re probably already sharing benchmarks and key performance indicators to your CFO. It’s a requirement of your job, but to be the best you can be in your position, it’s important to go above and beyond these requirements. Giving a full analysis on how your team is performing, where you can improve and how you’ve progressed shows that you’re not just encouraging your team to be mediocre, but pushing everyone to get better. As an accounts receivable manager, your efforts to collect all that is owed to the business makes a huge difference to the success or failure of your company.
Cash flow is the king of any company. Your sales numbers can be off the chart, your marketing can be the best in the biz, but if you’re not collecting on those sales you don’t have any way to sustain, grow or move forward. For that reason, it’s important to take the time to outline your progress and goals to your CFO. This doesn’t have to be done every month, but shoot for every quarter or when you meet the halfway mark in your fiscal year.
ACCOUNTS RECEIVABLE ANALYSIS
The following reporting metrics, which are more than just numbers, will impress your CFO in your constant strive to increase performance and better the business as a whole.
OUTLINE YOUR CURRENT STRUGGLES
This is a hard one to admit, especially to the CFO, but it’s important that you’re able to recognize where your weak points lie and prove that you’re making an effort to resolve them. This could be problem accounts that you’re currently working with, strategies that need improved or a high DSO that you’re looking to improve on. Try to come up with one struggle every time because even if you have the best department in the industry, there are always areas to improve.
WHY AREN’T CUSTOMERS PAYING ON TIME
You don’t need to lay out every account and why they’re not paying on time in this section. Your CFO doesn’t have the time to read this and only needs a high-level overview. Is there a pattern between the accounts that you notice? This is where you can bring up issues that might be stemming from a lack of resources in your department or a change that needs to take place that the CFO can help address, such as disputes occurring from a lack of oversight in packaging or delivery.
WHAT ARE OUR CURRENT STRATEGIES
Highlight some of the strategies you’re currently using that are working for the department. If you’re using an automated accounts receivable software, you can run a report on the total number of activities all of your collectors are performing each month. You can tell your CFO exactly how many calls your department has made, how many were successful, how many emails you’ve sent and more.
WHAT ARE YOUR GOALS
Outline what goals your department is setting for your yourselves. This could be anything from reducing DSO and increasing CEI to making more calls or sending more emails. Maybe you have an online bill pay portal and you believe that you can increase your effectiveness by pushing more customers to use it. Outline SMART goals (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely) with clear numbers and a timeline for when you plan to achieve it.
HOW WILL YOU GET THERE?
Make clear what new strategies you will be implementing to achieve your SMART goals. These can be smaller things like sending an email blast with an incentive to get customers to start using the online bill pay portal. It could also be something larger that you need your CFO to get on board with, like purchasing and implementing automated accounts receivable software to increase your effectiveness and reduce your time spent on manual tasks.