Credit Today is the fastest growing publication in the credit field, favored by more and more top credit executives. We cover the world of business, or trade credit, with concise, yet in-depth, reporting. We also publish the most in-depth salary survey in the industry, covering all major credit positions.Credit Today is the fastest growing publication in the credit field, favored by more and more top credit executives. We cover the world of business, or trade credit, with concise, yet in-depth, reporting. We also publish the most in-depth salary survey in the industry, covering all major credit positions.   
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Justin Brands, Inc. (A Berkshire Hathaway company)
Fort Worth, Texas

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Corporate Credit Manager-World Wide
Thales Navigation, Inc.

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Fulton Paper Company

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Doug M. Thomas
Kimberly-Clark Customer Financial Services

Credit Today newsletter

Welcome to
Credit Today Online

Credit Today is the premier online portal for trade credit professionals.

This web site and all the resources within are for Members of Credit Today Online.

Meetings that Work
By David Schmidt
Meetings that Work While a co-worker drones on about some problem his team is having that has nothing to do with you, you zone out. Staring into space you wonder if you should pretend to take notes, but instead make some sketches for the kitchen upgrade you've been contemplating and start working on a grocery list.

Sound familiar? Unfortunately, many of us find this scenario all too familiar. Businesses everywhere force employees to devote considerable time to The Meeting. . . .
keep reading
Credit Today Senior Credit Executive Symposium: Only Two Spots Left!
Credit Today Senior Credit Executive Symposium: Only Two Spots Left! Are you a senior-level credit exec interested in getting together with 22 other high-level, very smart credit execs at the only four-star hotel on San Antonio's Riverwalk? If so, then join us for our Senior Credit Executive Symposium!

Note: To join us, you must be sponsored by an existing Member (if you're not sure if you know someone to sponsor you, please call our office at 540-343-7500). This exclusive event is a roll-up-your-shirtsleeves event where YOU set the agenda and get direct feedback and ideas from you peers on your most pressing problems and improvement opportunities. . . .
keep reading

Private Equity Outfits May Be on the Prowl for Some of Your Best Customers
That privately held company--prosperous and well managed--you have long valued as a customer may, at this very moment, be being sized up as an acquisition by a private equity or hedge fund. These funds are sitting on an estimated $462 billion to be put to work in buyouts, up from $399 in December, according to research firm Preqin. And these choice, privately held companies--free from the nuisance of stockholder objections--are currently their favorite target. Their pristine balance sheets will be loaded up with debt, and you could be dealing with difficult and even hostile new management. . . . keep reading
2014 Credit Card Survey: More Mainstream Than Ever
by David Schmidt
2014 Credit Card Survey: More Mainstream Than Ever This is the fourth time Credit Today has conducted a survey regarding credit card practices. While we have not seen any dramatic changes to the landscape, it is changing nonetheless. The prime take away is that the acceptance of credit cards as a payment mechanism is increasingly becoming a mainstream practice for business credit grantors.

If you are not already accepting credit cards, it is increasingly likely you will in the future, and if credit card acceptance is new to your organization, you will undoubtedly see credit cards used more frequently in a wider variety of situations as time goes by.

Accordingly, here are the key findings we gleaned from this survey:
  • Credit card acceptance continues to grow among B2B firms
  • At the same time an increased percentage of customer are paying by credit card
  • Cost is the largest barrier to credit card acceptance
  • Most credit card payments are handled over the phone
  • Cards are being accepted in a wide variety of payment scenarios
  • Despite the impact of transaction fees, the survey did not uncover any consistency among survey participants in terms of efforts to offset them
. . .
keep reading
Benchmarking Credit Cards, Part 2: Navigating the Costs
Benchmarking Credit Cards, Part 2: Navigating the Costs In Part 2 of the results of our Benchmarking Survey on Credit Card acceptance by business credit departments, we take a look at...
  • What percent of companies allow both prompt pay discounts and credit card payment?
  • Cost saving strategies for processing credit cards
  • The percent of companies that assess surcharges for credit card use
  • The amount of the surcharges being assessed, as well as how (i.e., fixed or percentage?)
  • The most popular merchants (39 in all)
  • Median, upper & lower quartile of merchant account fees
  • A ranking of the key benefits of accepting credit cards
  • Readers weigh in with advice, best practices, and key challenges
. . .
keep reading
Customer to Sales: "Your Credit Manager is Being Ridiculous"
Often when global corporation gets a new customer and the sales person asks them to send financial statements to Credit, they say, "Oh, we don't do that. Here's the basic information we give, and that's all were going to do."

"Our sales people know that's not acceptable to us, but they don't want to get involved, and we don't want them to," notes the Senior Director of Corporate Credit. "So we get on phone to their contact, sometimes a purchasing guy, and we explain why we need it and we even offer them an out." . . .
keep reading
Vetting Vendors With a Heavy Emphasis on Financial Statement Analysis
Vetting Vendors With a Heavy Emphasis on Financial Statement Analysis Production plants and other business units of this corporate giant have some explaining to do if they blunder when selecting a vendor or contractor for a major purchase or project. Comprehensive vetting is readily available from the credit department, which ALWAYS asks for financial statements. No one wants to hear the question, "Why didn't you ask for it?" . . . keep reading
The 5 Principles of Gaining Agreement
By Barry Elms
The 5 Principles of Gaining Agreement There are few things more satisfying in credit management than that moment when the customer you have been working with to resolve a cash flow problem or a complex dispute on the account says; "we have a deal," that moment when all your hard work and tireless effort finally comes to fruition. Whether it took days, weeks or even months to get agreement, one thing is sure: it didn't happen by accident. But how did it happen? What were the factors that determined the outcome? Why did this deal work when others did not? . . . keep reading

A History of the Commercial Collection Agency Association
By Emil Hartleb, August 6, 2014
A History of the Commercial Collection Agency Association On May 1, 2014 the Board of Governors of the Commercial Law League of America (CLLA) dissolved the Commercial Collection Agency Association (CCAA).

The CCAA had been in existence for approximately 42 years and had a reputation in the credit granting community as an entity whose members provided excellent service and were concerned with serving the business credit community in the best possible manner. . . .
keep reading

Achieving World-Class Risk Analysis With Credit Insurance
Achieving World-Class Risk Analysis With Credit Insurance Today's historically low credit insurance premiums may provide an opportunity to vastly and affordably improve your credit risk analysis. You have a partner with "skin in the game" and an army of analysts scrutinizing the most current financial information to prevent losses--to you and to them.

. . .
keep reading
Five Reasons to Reject a Customer Purchase Order
Assume that a customer submits a purchase order listing terms of 90 days from the date of your invoice, rather than your usual terms of net 30 days. If your order-entry department fills the order without addressing the incorrect terms of sale, the customer will claim that the invoice has incorrect d . . . keep reading

Back Filling Credit Management
You're "backfilling", in current management parlance, when you assign one employee to handle another employee's responsibilities when an employee is moved out of his or her regularly assigned duties. Backfilling can be a way to quickly address the need for resources during major software implementations. In this credit professional's case, backfilling occurred over a year ago and allowed for a rapid transition while benefiting the company and all involved. . . . keep reading
Smoking Out Corporate Fraud -- Investment Investigators Lead the Way
July 15, 2014
In some industries, the revenue-to-employee ratio is an important metric of financial condition. While revenue can be faked, it's more difficult to fake headcount--although Chinese firms had been known to "rent" workers and stock to deceive visiting analysts.

That ratio was one of the giveaways recently when Gotham City Research blew a Spanish WiFi firm out of the investment-world water. So what does this have to do with the trade credit world? Several things:
  1. pick up a couple of relatively unknown, but effective and easy-to-find, metrics that can help you spot a problem; and
  2. learn what accounting trick is responsible for TWO-THIRDS of fraudulent financial reporting
  3. learn the names of two financial investigation firms with great track records
. . .
keep reading
Regular Collection Strategy Meetings Get Results
Every other Thursday afternoon, top credit and finance department staff and the entire sales team of this major international corporation meet for about an hour. Any sales people who are in town come in person. The rest attend by tele- and video-conference. All are looking at a report prepared for the meeting listing the company's 20 largest delinquents by volume. The list is of avid interest to the sales people since part of their compensation is based on the percentage of overdues. . . . keep reading
'Ready for Work' Truck Delivered 'As Is'
By Ann Morales Olazábal, MBA, JD
'Ready for Work' Truck Delivered 'As Is' This case illustrates a scenario in which the contract for goods clearly specifies that the merchandise is being purchased "as-is," but that seems to conflict with promises made by a sales rep.

Does a clear "as-is" contract trump a potential misrepresentation by a rep? Read on to find out the principles governing this scenario. . . .
keep reading
Links to All Bankruptcy Courts
Links to Bankruptcy Court Web Sites . . . keep reading

Supplier Evaluation: The New Frontier For Savvy Credit Execs
Roughly 60 percent of credit departments now get involved in the increasingly important function of the evaluation of suppliers, according to a recent Credit Today benchmarking survey (See "Credit Today Benchmarking: Supplier Evaluation is More Critical than Ever"). Yes, we said suppliers, not customers. Traditionally, that has not been the core function of credit, but it's a great way to add value for your department as well as for you professionally. . . . keep reading

Value-for-Value Transactions for Extending Terms
Value-for-Value Transactions for Extending Terms When a customer demands extended terms, you have three options: You can refuse and accept the risk of losing the business. Or you can just go along with it, pretending that it isn't happening. Or you can analyze what extended terms will cost you--in cost of capital and subsequent lost profit--and propose some kind of value-for-value transaction. Most of these demands are met with the first two options. These credit professionals are taking the third option and making it work. . . . keep reading
Who Should Sign a Credit App?
By Ann Morales Olazábal, MBA, JD
After doing business with Dade Institutional Supply on a payment-in-advance basis for some time, Sobell Technology, Inc. sought an open account. Dade sent Sobell its credit application, and Bonnie Robillard, Sobell's office manager, filled it out. She signed the form "B.A. Robillard, Office Manager" . . . keep reading

How Good Are Your Soft Skills?
By David Schmidt
When you go for a new job interview, your interviewers are looking at your resume, ticking off the requirements for the position: College degree? Check. Years experience? Check. Specific technical skills? Check. But during an interview the hiring team is also trying to assess what type of a worker you are. They ask pointed questions about times you were faced with a difficult problem, met a challenging goal or when you worked as part of a team. . . . keep reading
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 Credit Jobs Today
 This Month's Survey

2014 Extended Terms Survey

This month's survey takes a look at:
  • The extent to which customers are demanding longer terms ("their" payment terms, rather than your selling terms)
  • Who approves any requests for longer terms
  • Whether companies have formal policies in place to handle such requests
  • How far terms are being extended
  • What strategies are used by companies when these requests are received
  • Whether credit managers' own companies are also seeking longer terms from THEIR suppliers (and what we can learn from that)
If you're as interested in these results as we are, then please click here to participate!

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