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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.

Critical Steps to Take Before You Automate
May 23, 2016
Given the potential to improve productivity and performance, it's no wonder that 63 percent of organizations participating in our 2016 Outlook Survey said they plan on automating at least one segment of the order-to-cash process in 2016. But where to begin? . . . keep reading

Five Ways to Get People to Care About A/R Data
By Dave Schmidt
Five Ways to Get People to Care About A/R Data The sharing of information has become increasingly important. Successful organizations are proving over and over again that the internal sharing of meaningful data can, on its own accord, improve performance and provide a competitive edge. In this regard, A/R data is as valuable, if not more so, than any other class of corporate information. Learn:
  • what to share
  • why the format is so critical
  • how to make your data more valuable
  • what types of data you should focus on
  • who to involve, and why
. . .
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22 Items That Every Credit Policy Should Include
A thorough credit policy manual is a critical document for any well-run credit department. If you have been meaning to put one together, or need to update yours, here are 22 items that your policy should cover. . . . keep reading

The Proliferation of 'Phony Baloney' Financial Reports
May 12, 2016
It is widely understood that Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) are often observed in the breach. But what is not so well understood is the extent of this breach and the speed at which it is expanding. In 2009, 72 percent of the companies in Standard & Poor's 500-stock index reported non-GAAP results, according to The Analyst's Accounting Observer (AAO). By last year AAO found that this had grown to 90 percent. . . . keep reading

A Trend toward Misleading Financial Statements?
A Trend toward Misleading Financial Statements? Last week, Fairway Group Holdings Corp, a grocery chain operating some 15 stores in the New York City area, that struggled financially since a 2013 IPO left it saddled with debt, filed for bankruptcy. For Senior Analyst Michael Infranco of F&D Reports, Fairway's death knell rang two years ago when he was studying the disclosures in the Company's prospectus. . . . keep reading

Survey: Top Automation Priorities for Credit Departments in 2016
Survey: Top Automation Priorities for Credit Departments in 2016 Here are a few numbers from our recent benchmarking survey on automation (see "Huge Opportunity Remains for Credit Organizations to Improve Performance through Automation"):
  • 77 percent of credit departments have automated some aspect of the order-to-cash process
  • Within that group, an average of just 2.3 of the 12 parts of the OTC process are automated. 
. . .
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A Terms Pushback Success Story For the Supplier--With a Little Help From the Government
Scott Blakeley, Esq.
A Terms Pushback Success Story For the Supplier--With a Little Help From the Government Credit teams for suppliers are experiencing more financially sound customers--especially their largest--disregarding supplier-set terms and unilaterally extending these terms with a so-called terms pushback strategy (TPS). While TPS allows the customer to preserve working capital, improve cash flow and grow inventory, the supplier's DSO and profit margin suffer. . . . keep reading

Webinar: Best of A/R: 4 Essentials from Top 100 Credit & A/R Transformations
Webinar: Best of A/R: 4 Essentials from Top 100 Credit & A/R Transformations Over 70% of Credit & Accounts Receivable teams are looking at technology solutions to reduce time-consuming, manual tasks and to shift resources to high-impact decision-making activities. However, only 39% of A/R transformation projects meet expectations. While technology can help fetch the low-hanging fruit with automation and high ROI, it can also result in a painful IT project and a negative impact on the business process. Join us as we consolidate the learnings from over 100 accounts receivable transformations and synthesize the best practices of credit and A/R teams that have achieved successful results with reduced DSO, improved team productivity and increased customer satisfaction. . . . keep reading

Pre-Litigation Checklist: What To Do Before Contacting Your Attorney
Pre-Litigation Checklist: What To Do Before Contacting Your Attorney Much time and money is spent in having lawyers research the information to which you have better access.

An essential element of winning a lawsuit, without spending excessive time and money in attorney's fees, is gathering the proper information yourself - before your attorney even enters the picture.

Use this handy checklist to make sure you've covered all your bases before you contact your attorney. . . .
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Sun Tzu's Art of War and Cost-Effective Collections Litigation
By Michael J. Niborski
Sun Tzu's Art of War and Cost-Effective Collections Litigation Over two thousand years ago, the Chinese philosopher Sun Tzu compiled a work entitled The Art of War, which has evolved as perhaps the most influential book of strategy in the world today. The Art of War, an analysis of competition and conflict on virtually every interpersonal level, is studied by politicians, military officers, executives and various other leaders around the world. A fundamental principle set forth in the book is that one who has an organized and visionary strategy while preparing for a conflict will be primed to win the conflict before it is even fought. . . . keep reading

Legal Case Study: Continuation Rejected -- Clerk of Court Rejects UCC Continuation Because Filing Had Already Been Continued
By Kristin Alford, April 26, 2016
Legal Case Study: Continuation Rejected -- Clerk of Court Rejects UCC Continuation Because Filing Had Already Been Continued Issue: What happens when you file a UCC-3 to continue your security interest and the county rejects the filing because "CONTINUATION ALREADY FILED ON 07/07/10 #091136583"? . . . keep reading

Deduction Challenges in the Age of E-Commerce
Deduction Challenges in the Age of E-Commerce Virtually everything e-commerce retailers do is automated and based on parameters loaded into their computers off the contracts they've negotiated with their suppliers. In the past, if there were pricing or delivery problems, suppliers' credit people would phone their contacts in the customers' organizations, discuss them and probably work them out. But now there's nobody to talk to. It's totally automated. Their computers spit out deductions, and all you can do is go into their web portal. . . . keep reading

Banks Going Insane: Uh Oh; Here We Go Again
April 18, 2016
A friend of mine here in Virginia - I won't identify him any more precisely than that - is in banking. The other day I asked him how things were going. He's a relationship manager and I'm always interested in the take of bankers about what they're seeing from their perspective.

It's always interesting for someone like me in trade credit to hear a banker's perspective. They see things usually from a local or regional perspective, but also cross a broader swath of industries than those of us in trade credit. So there's always lots to learn. I'm always interested in how their loan portfolio is performing and what the demand for loans might be.  . . .
keep reading

What a Leading Credit Consultant Tells Top Management About Credit
"The companies I've been asked to help often have an owner or CEO who has a hard time letting go," says one of the most successful credit exec-turned management consultants we've ever run into. "Part of my role is to get them to realize that they can let go of some things but still retain control. I can't emphasize enough the importance of delegation. It helped immensely in my career. People like to do things. I tell my clients to teach their employees and then to let them run." . . . keep reading

How This CFS Department Responds to Customer Requests For Longer Terms
How This CFS Department Responds to Customer Requests For Longer Terms When one of 3M's customers requests or demands extended terms, they set in motion a process with the Customer Financial Solutions team and their business partners. "At 3M, we are very much concerned with balancing the customers' needs with 3M's top-line and bottom-line performance," says the manager of 3M Customer Financial Solutions. We tell our sales teams . . . keep reading

Credit Today Benchmarking: Dozens of Practical, Real-World Recommendations From Our Automation Survey
David Schmidt, "Survey Architect"
Credit Today Benchmarking: Dozens of Practical, Real-World Recommendations From Our Automation Survey Fantastic advice, including dozens of real world stories and tips for successful automation, offered up by our survey participants. Plus...
  • We highlight eleven key areas in which credit departments are seeing benefits from automation - and specific examples in each area
  • Respondents explain why it's so critical to improve your processes prior to automating (you don't want to automate an inefficient process!). Learn the two key ingredients for getting this step right!
  • The top barriers preventing credit departments from automating
. . .
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Credit Risk Information Instantly Available
How do you enable credit analysts to make fast, accurate decisions at world class speed? You put every scrap of relevant credit information at their fingertips. That's what has been happening at this major corporation for the past five years. . . . keep reading

Credit Today Benchmarking-2016 Process Automation Study: Huge Opportunity Remains for Credit Organizations to Improve Performance through Automation
By David Schmidt
Credit Today Benchmarking-2016 Process Automation Study: Huge Opportunity Remains for Credit Organizations to Improve Performance through Automation Over 3 out of 4 credit departments have automated at least part of their order-to-cash process. At first glance that sounds pretty good. However, when you consider that the use of accounting or ERP software is almost universal in corporate America, the fact that 23 percent have not automated any part of the order-to-cash process is telling. Furthermore, of those who have embraced automation, on average they have only automated 2.3 of the twelve areas of the order-to-cash process. . . . keep reading

Open Communications with Sales Pay Off
Open Communications with Sales Pay Off Got a question about an account you think the salespeople can answer? Ask them--not by email or at your next regularly scheduled meeting but right now, in person or on the phone. You'll find you not only get the best answers but you build up invaluable cooperation. . . . keep reading

A Texas Collection Story
A Texas Collection Story "Don't come back without the money!"

His boss's words were ringing in this ears as this young collector drove south for Laredo, Texas early one morning in 1978. Now corporate credit manager for a concrete company, at the time he was a collector for a commercial finance company that did heavy equipment financing (aka Yellow Iron) to some very high-risk customers. His boss's collection philosophy was succinct: "Make sure your customer pays us before he even thinks about feeding his family." . . .
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