All about the customer, not the cash
Last week two large well-known clients went live on Corrivo. This week credit controllers from several more countries in Europe will go live and start managing their eInvoices using our cloud-based platform. One of these clients is a major supplier of office stationery and supplies. They have thousands of invoices going out every day to businesses around Europe. Why did they choose Corrivo? Like many switched-on companies today, they are all about the customer. They know that to survive and thrive, they need to deliver a complete experience that pleases their customers, from online ordering to online invoicing. Their customers (and our CEO is one of them) receive emails and can view invoices on their phones, tablets or their computers. The secure link sent by email means all their customer needs to do is click to view, wherever they are. And that’s business to business eCommerce that is as good as anything their customers could get using a consumer eCommerce supplier. And yes, they’re at risk, like so many other businesses, of losing customers to Amazon and the online giants whose service and customer experience is digital, simple and convenient. If you want to thrive and survive in B2B sales today, you need to care passionately about the customer experience. Get this right, and the cash will follow.
Credit Managers are Customer Account Managers too.
All digital, touchless customer experiences that flow well from order to fulfilment and invoicing leave little room for complaints, disputes or issues that could cause late payment. One of the enormous advantages of Corrivo’s eBilling module is that it enables credit managers or AR specialists to manage the process of query handling and escalation through to closure efficiently, managing communication with other areas of the business until the problem is resolved. If that’s outside their remit, they can pass the query on to customer services or an account manager, who can also have a login to Corrivo so they can deal directly with the issues raised by customers against their invoices. Whoever takes responsibility for investigating queries, the credit manager or AR specialist, is still part of the customer experience and has an important role in ensuring the customer’s voice is heard. Whether the problem had its root cause in fulfilment or in invoicing is irrelevant. The point at which the customer raises a query is often not until the invoice is presented. Hence, handling customer queries carefully and effectively is of critical importance to the lasting impression the customer has of your business.
Trustpilot is becoming increasingly popular in business to business eCommerce scenarios and exemplifies how expectations from consumer eCommerce are setting the tone for B2B eCommerce. There are hundreds of similar five-star rating and review products out there. What Accounts Receivable teams are not necessarily prepared for is the role they play in influencing those scores. The silo-based organisational design where finance and sales are worlds apart rarely exist today. Matrix organisations and cohesive, agile team working are now essential. We think they make everybody in the business more engaged, accountable and involved. In fact, we suspect that any curriculum teaching credit management professionals should cover this topic to prepare the aspiring credit professional for the vital contribution their work will make to customer satisfaction, customer loyalty and customer retention.