Sooner or later it happens to all of us... we end up doing work for a customer that will not pay their bill. I know that by this point you are using the powerful ESC Collection Manager feature to call the customers that owe you money, send them letters and track your collection attempts, but despite your best efforts there will inevitably be someone that can't, or won't, pay what they owe. While this is frustrating, what is infuriating is finding out that you inadvertantly did more work for that customer after they stiffed you the first time - only to have them stiff you again.
To prevent this from happening to you, we provided the ability to create a list of credit ratings with specific properties by selecting Enter Credit Ratings from the Customer Info drop-down menu. So let's take a quick look at this feature.
The first enhancement is the ability to assign a color to each credit rating, such as red for BAD or green for GREAT. Then, whenever you recall a customer on the Qualification, Dispatch Entry or Customer Entry screen, the entire credit rating field will be displayed in the color associated with their credit rating. This should help call attention to the field so you don't miss out on this important information.
The second enhancement can actually prevent anyone from creating dispatches for customers that burned you in the past or are still in collection. Simply check the Restrict Entering Dispatch box and the following message will appear if someone tries to create a dispatch for a customer with that credit rating.
If this appears and the customer really needs the work done and is finally ready to pay, you can switch over to the Customer Entry screen by going to Activities → Edit Customer Information and change their credit rating, then save and switch back the Dispatch Entry screen by pressing F4 and save it as well.
We highly recommend taking a minute out of your day to setup at least one credit rating that does this and use it as necessary. Remember that you can always update the customer's credit rating from the ESC Collection Manager, so there should be no reason to ever do work for a bad customer again.
Written by Eric Rausin
Featured in October 2011 Newsletter