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How to deal with customers that refuse to pay up In an ideal world, all customers would pay their invoices almost immediately. If they did, cash flow problems would never materialise and your business would run like clockwork. Sadly, things rarely happen that way and it is not unusual to end up with at least one bad payer on your books. So how should you deal with customers who can't or won't pay?

Customers that refuse to pay cost your business money, so they need to be dealt with as quickly as possible. The best way to do this is to spot the warning signs before they become a major issue and you need to call upon the services of a collection agency.

Tried and tested debt collection steps

It is a good idea to have a clear policy in place for dealing with non-paying customers.

Don’t always assume a customer is deliberately ignoring an overdue invoice. Occasionally, invoices remain unpaid because the customer has overlooked them or the invoice never arrived. A friendly reminder, along with a copy of the overdue invoice, should jog the customer’s memory and secure a payment.

Auditors need to get with the timesGlobal connectivity, smart machines and new media as drivers that are likely to influence the global need for accountants over the next decade, research by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) has found.

A series of round tables held by ACCA and Grant Thornton in seven countries across the world, including South Africa, has revealed a series of highly diverse opinions on the current and future position of audit. The discussions looked at the role audit plays in developed and developing countries. It also questioned the usefulness of audit by different players.

Shorter reporting timetables

Auditors need to look at how they can use technology to deliver a high-quality audit in a more efficient and timely manner.

Where there is change, there is greater demand for assurance in general and audit in particular, and for the two to be provided in new ways that make use of new technologies.