When Is It Time to Fire a Client Over Unpaid Invoices?

July 5, 2019
Sometimes, unpaid invoices force a business to make decisions that are not pleasant or comfortable. In many of those incidences, that decision is to fire a client. If your unpaid invoices are piling up, existing relationships with companies don’t always override your bottom line. How can you determine when it is time to fire a client over unpaid bills?

Prevention Is Key

The best way to avoid needing to fire a client is not acquiring the client in the first place. Take your time when completing your due diligence. Investigate every new client that you get, especially if they are interested in purchasing a large amount of product or many services. You would never loan your money to a company without knowing anything about them, so you should never loan your capital to another company blindly. At a minimum, you should do online research on the company and run a basic credit report. You might be surprised how much you can learn in only half an hour of work (and how much it can save you!). You should also practice requesting money immediately when it is due. If things have gotten to the point that you are looking at firing a client due to non-payment, there’s a good chance this isn’t the first time they’ve been overdue. If you allow a company to routinely pay late or ignore invoices the first few times they are sent, it’s hard to teach them that won’t be acceptable any longer. You should always be clear with clients about your policies and enforce them, even if it means losing a client or two as a result. After all, would you rather be paid on time by 100% of your clients or lose a single client who wasted employee time trying to chase down money every month?

When to Fire a Client: It is a Difficult Decision

Having to make this decision may cause you headaches unless you have set parameters in place to avoid having to do so. Company guidelines regarding this scenario help take the emotional stress out of the decision. Unfortunately, there is no one answer as to when it is time to fire a client over unpaid invoices. The client’s history should be taken into account. Did they have sudden financial issues that are preventing payment? How long have they been a client? If you have a long-term client that is having difficulty paying invoices and your relationship is strong, you can always ask your point of contact what has changed. If a client is merely having temporary difficulties, talking with them to set up new terms could clear the air and give you a timetable for invoice payment. That said, conversations about why someone’s payment is late and how to resolve the situation should happen very early on in your billing cycle. You should also consider any steps standing between you and the “last resort” of firing a client outright. Collections services are a great way to attempt to recoup owed money without formally letting a client go. Professional collections agencies know how to handle delicate situations between your business and other businesses. At Alacrity Collections Agency, we are adept at recovering from debtors while maintaining your good reputation. Don’t think that the only option you have for clients that owe money is firing them!

Partner with Alacrity Collections, a Professional Collections Agency

Alacrity Collections is proud to be a leader in debt collections. We achieve great results that are over twice the national average and treat all of our customers with dignity and respect. We work tirelessly to protect your brand and improve your net returns. To learn more about our services and get in touch, please call us at 1-800-752-9663 or set up a phone appointment directly on our representative’s calendar via this link: www.calendly.com/hheemann.  

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