Mail Is Slowing Down - And It Could Impact Your Cash Flow
In October, the USPS announced that it would slow mail delivery as part of its 10-year plan in an attempt to reduce costs. In an official press release, they said that the changes “will increase delivery reliability, consistency, and efficiency for our customers and across our network,” and that while “most first-class mail and periodicals will be unaffected by the new service standard changes,” those traveling longer distances will have a day or two added to their delivery time.
Paul Steidler, a senior fellow at the Lexington Institute, stated that 4 out of 10 pieces of first-class mail will be impacted and that these changes mean “mail delivery will be slower than in the 1970s.”
Experts report that the new USPS service standards represent the biggest slowdown of mail services in a generation.
Late Payments Hurt More Than Your Bottom Line
Mail delivery is slowing, and the change will likely be permanent. That means if you are mailing out invoices, it could take even longer for them to get to your customers. And once the invoices arrive, it will also take longer for them to mail you back their payment.
Even before the USPS changes, 93% of businesses reported that they experienced late payments.
Late payments are identified as a major factor of concern for the 60% of businesses worried about their cash flow each month. There are opportunity costs for businesses that are short on payments that should have been received, as late payments force them to delay the allocation of funds toward projects that could be generating revenue. The ripple effect can even reach as far as the supply chain, impacting the ability to buy stock inventory, pay employees, and fund improvement projects.
Not only do late payments impact your bottom line, but they also increase the workload for your accounts receivable team. In addition, the late fees incurred by your clients can greatly strain your relationship with them.
Is Automation the Answer?
The good news is, accounts receivable automation through systems like YayPay eliminates the impact of the mail slowdown by bypassing physical mail altogether.
Through automated communications, invoices are delivered directly. What’s more, the system follows up with alerts and communications until an invoice is paid. By using YayPay, you can create custom workflows that filter customers based on criteria that you set–such as “new customers” or “high-risk accounts.” This allows you to send communications tailored to specific customers, providing more customizable interactions that are catered to their needs and circumstances. You will no longer need to email or call accounts one by one in order to personalize your client touchpoints. Best of all, automated communications boost customer satisfaction and get you paid faster.
With a self-service portal, payments can be made directly to your company upon receipt of an invoice. After logging in to their account, your customer can also view their account summary, see what they currently owe, and find options on how they would like to make their payment–be it credit card, ACH, or bank transfer.
Over 50% of buyers indicate that they prefer to do business on their own time, as opposed to working around the limitations of handling transactions during their vendors’ business hours.
Providing an easy and accessible way to pay invoices will help reduce repetitive follow-up tasks and increase your customers’ satisfaction.
No matter the industry, forward-thinking financial leaders are embracing automation as the future of accounts receivable. Speaking about how YayPay has impacted their process, Jumio staff accountant Rachel Mariano said, “YayPay did exactly what we needed. We’ve saved time, resources, and improved collections at the same time.”