If you’re in the unenviable position of making both sellers and buyers happy when it comes to a billing program, check out these five reasons you should be looking at a cloud-based solution to achieve your goals.
If you sell your products or services through a dealer or distributor network and you have a growing or robust national account program, you may be losing time, money, and considerable goodwill if your billing program is still dependent on paper and manual processes.
As the entity occupying the top of this tri-partite relationship, it is your responsibility to satisfy the needs of both your dealers/distributors (sellers) and your customers (buyers)…and that’s not always an easy task. And when it comes to billing and payments, the need to make everyone happy is even more difficult. No subject is as fraught with danger and missteps as financial processing. Make sure you have a solution that’s transparent, accountable, and flexible; and one that easily integrates with any systems and platforms being used.
Here are the five top reasons you may want to transition your national account billing program to a cloud-based, automated solution:
- Remove inefficiency – Nothing eats at the bottom line as much as inefficiency, especially when it results from a transaction system that’s dependent on paper and manual processing. But you’ll have to ensure that both the buyer (your national account customer) and seller (your dealer/distributor) buy into your chosen digital billing solution.
- Guarantee price/contract compliance – When you have a network consisting of numerous members (buyers and sellers), the possibility for different prices and contract terms for the same product may vary from location to location. With a cloud-based automated solution, every time a buyer makes a purchase, they can be confident that the price they’re paying is the same for everyone in their organization, regardless of where they make the purchase.
- Provide real-time credit status – Checking on a customer’s credit is not only time-consuming; sometimes, the information you find is not even reliable. A solution that includes a credit management function will do the checking for you, providing real-time customer credit status and credit reviews. This will help reduce two issues that can cripple a seller: overextending credit to a bad risk or putting a hold on a customer account that might, in fact be, a great credit risk.
- Ensure system interoperability – The solution you choose must have the capability to integrate with a wide variety of ERP and accounting systems. The last thing you want is to implement a solution that requires the sellers and buyers to have to make significant IT resource investments adhering to rigid and inflexible standards.. A cloud-based system that is able to receive and send data electronically in a wide variety of formats and transport methods eliminates those concerns and increases the speed to value for all parties in your billing ecosystem.
- Get the data necessary for business growth – Any solution you consider needs to have a robust data capture and analytics component. The business intelligence garnered from accurate, real-time numbers and information at the line-item level will allow executives within the enterprise to make more reliable forecasts and informed decisions.
An overarching concern affecting all of these reasons is simplicity. When it comes to national account transactions, complexity often reigns supreme. So imagine a one-to-many system, where everyone (buyer and seller) can make one single connection to be able to transact with everyone else in the network. Imagine a system that normalizes all buyer and seller document data so that everyone in the network is essentially “speaking the same language.”
And imagine a system where all national account purchases from a specific seller appear on a single invoice, no matter where, when, or how many different purchases were made, nationwide; where sellers can concentrate all of their billing for a national account on a single bill; and where one single payment will cover all of those purchases.
Aside from reducing transaction complexity, a one-to-many solution also reduces the amount of time your finance department currently focuses on low value-added accounts payable and accounts receivable tasks. That allows these valuable professionals to contribute to the company’s growth by focusing on more strategic matters and initiatives.
See how you can easily connect all parties in your national accounts billing program.