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Manager of Credit & Collections, ASSA Abloy Americas Division, New Haven, CT
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Credit Manager, Big Lots Stores, Inc., Wholesale Division
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The Credit Today ListServ has become the pre-eminent online forum, providing an opportunity for discussion and comments (and occasional humor) from an impressive list of credit professionals."
David Dungan, Director of Credit
Justin Brands, Inc. (A Berkshire Hathaway company)
Fort Worth, Texas
"There are numerous credit periodicals available to the credit professional today. How good is Credit Today? Is it relevant? I always have to read it late, or online because my credit analysts want to read it the minute it comes in. When my staff wants to read a publication before I have a chance to read it then something is working in that publication. We have cancelled our other subscriptions. When you have the best you do not need the rest."
Corporate Credit Manager-World Wide
Thales Navigation, Inc.
"The newsletter, coupled with the website and the ListServ, are to us, more valuable than any other credit publication, bar none. I try to use at least one article out of each newsletter for departmental training/discussion sessions."
D. Mark Constantine
Corporate Credit Mgr
Fulton Paper Company
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Doug M. Thomas
Kimberly-Clark Customer Financial Services
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|
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
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|
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:
. . . keep reading
- 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
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...
. . . keep reading
- 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
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|
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
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
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|
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:
. . . keep reading
- pick up a couple of relatively unknown, but effective and easy-to-find, metrics that can help you spot a problem; and
- learn what accounting trick is responsible for TWO-THIRDS of fraudulent financial reporting
- learn the names of two financial investigation firms with great track records
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'|
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
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
How Good Are Your Soft Skills?|
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