Credit control is the debt management function within companies.
Credit controllers can do some or all of the following:
Send out invoices – most companies now have this as an automated function however the credit controller is often still responsible for ensuring the whole process. They though send out copy invoice on a requested basis, this is often one of the tactic used by companies not to pay their invoices on time – by calling or waiting to be called and saying at that point they have not received any invoices, it is a common practice in UK businesses. Credit controllers are often the first point of contact when something goes wrong and consequently they deal with the credit notes, also getting legitimate credits done quickly helps to get the rest of the invoice paid as companies will refuse sometimes to an invoice if there is an out standing credit due.
Send out proof of delivery. POD’s as they are commonly referred to are another delaying tactic used by companies not to pay their invoice on time. Many companies routinely ask for POD’s for all their invoices, and they will do this just as the invoice is due for payment and it is then used as a reason not to pay due invoices.
Send out letters. Collection letters are one of the most common and cheapest form of debt collection. As well as being cheap there are also quite ineffective as most will put them directly into to bin. However this is part of the collection process that have to be run through if an account is going to end up going to the legal department or before it is outsourced to a debt collection agency. Copies of these letters have to be kept to prove in court the company has tried to collect and used all reasonable attempts.
Make telephone calls. Making credit control calls is one of the largest part of the job in credit control. Using the telephone to contact customers is expensive, not for the cost of the call, but for the time used. Telephone collection is best used at large problem accounts and main accounts. Often companies will have many telephone collectors, for example credit card companies who have bank of telephone operators calling customers to collect on unpaid debt.
Reconcile accounts. This often happens when a credit controller joins a company, they find that the accounts have not been allocated correctly and they have to reconcile whole accounts often going back a year or more – this finds invoice that have not been paid and discovers mis-allocations, which are common within the industry.