Fine-tune Your Office Equipment Contracts with Flexible Payment Structures Blog Feature


April Neal

By: April Neal on November 15th, 2018

Fine-tune Your Office Equipment Contracts with Flexible Payment Structures

There is a chance to deliver exceptional customer service through every single customer interaction. As an office equipment dealer, you do this each time you supply your customers with high quality office technology equipment and top-notch maintenance services. But if you dig a little deeper, you’ll find even more opportunity to deliver a “wow-level” customer experience through the seemingly smaller touchpoints you have with them.

Consider how the simple act of offering a flexible payment structure may benefit your customer. The billing experts at GreatAmerica make it simple to setup any kind of payment structure your customer might need. By utilizing our back office services, you can customize the billing experience your customers have with you, save time, and reduce overall errors. A properly thought-out payment structure can go a long way toward keeping your customers happy and paying on time. 

How Does Your Customer Prefer Their Invoice Be Delivered?

Each of your customers are different. Some prefer to operate electronically. Others may opt for a more traditional approach, receiving a hard copy invoice via snail mail. Some may even want to access both a digital and hard copy invoice for their records. If your customer has multiple contracts, do they prefer each invoice be delivered to the same address at the same time?  Regardless of their preference, the fact that you are providing them with a choice will not go unnoticed.

Whether they prefer email, snail mail, or both, make sure you confirm the invoice delivery address or addresses. Not only will this reduce the chance for error, but it ensures you’ll receive the payment faster. 

What Invoice Due Date Will Best Suit Their Payment Schedule?

Setting a due date with the customer’s needs in mind is key in ensuring you, as a dealer, receive payments on-time and without hassle. Sending out an invoice with a due date of the 1st, when accounts receivable only cuts checks on the 5th would not line up with the needs of your customer. Not only will this likely delay funds on your end, but it may also result in an angry customer challenging a late fee.

If you ask your customer what their payment approval process looks like, and consult with them to determine the appropriate due date and number of lead days needed, GreatAmerica can customize their payment cycle to reflect a custom arrangement that suits their schedule to a tee.  

What Payment Method Does Your Customer Prefer?

Have a discussion up front regarding their payment preferences. If special accommodations need to be made, be proactive and present them with their options. Ensuring ease of payment from the start will help to avoid missed payments and prevent customer frustration further down the road.

Depending on how the customer pays, GreatAmerica provides the payment ACH form upfront so you can collect your payment automatically. If they prefer to pay via credit card, we will ensure their information is set up correctly from the first invoice. You’ll enjoy prompt payments with no delays related to pass-through charges. Accuracy from the get-go creates customer confidence and trust with you, the dealer, putting you in a better position to sell more.

What Level Of Invoice Detail Will Best Suit Your Customer?

Depending on their internal processes, your customer may require a high level of invoice detail. For instance, perhaps they budget and allocate funds by department. Or maybe they have multiple locations, but the corporate office receives the invoice. Whether the costs need to be broken down by asset or department, we can tailor their invoice to contain as much, or as little detail as necessary. Simply find out what your customer needs when setting up the very first invoice and GreatAmerica will make sure it contains the right information.

Will Your Customer Require a Custom Billing Period?

There are many types of organizations that operate on unique financial cycles. Depending on the type of organization you are dealing with, its size, and whether the funding approval process occurs over monthly or quarterly periods, the ability to get approval of funds to pay a bill may take days or even weeks. Some, like schools, may require whole annual payments in order to accommodate their budgetary cycle.

Ask your customers what kind of billing period will best fit with their model. Make sure you are communicating with the right person in order to determine if modifications will need to be made to address the funding cycle of their business or organization.

Don’t risk tarnishing your customer relationships over billing needs that were not fully understood. GreatAmerica makes it easy to be flexible to your customer’s precise needs. We’ll help you start off on the right foot from the very first invoice with this handy Billing & Invoicing Checklist.

April Neal

April Neal serves as Sales Support Specialist Functional Leader for the Office Equipment Group at GreatAmerica Financial Services. She originally joined GreatAmerica in 2012 where she began her career in Funding. April has since rounded out her experience, fulfilling several related roles including Team Leader role for Field Sales Central.

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