At Beyond, we’re big fans of Chaser and we’re not the only ones. This cloud-based credit control software was Xero App Partner of the Year 2016 and, more recently, has won AccountingExcellence Cloud App of the Year for 2017 and 2018. Suffice it to say, there is more than a bit of a buzz around this innovative bit of tech. It’s easy to see why Chaser is enjoying the spotlight when it boldly claims to save businesses 7.3 hours a week on credit control management and promises a boost of $22K for every $500K in turnover. Besides these impressive numbers, Chaser caught our attention because it is an app that tackles a problem we know businesses of all sizes experience – cash flow.
Cash flow is everything in business
This year we dedicated a blog to the question What amount of liquid funds should I hold in my company? and we started it off with a quote that you may have come across before, “Revenue is vanity, profit is sanity, but cash flow is reality”. The bottom-line of this accountant’s maxim (yes, we do have a sense of humour!) is that we are all in business to make a profit but if you don’t have a healthy cash flow then your business isn’t structurally sound, and it probably won’t be around for long.
What causes cash flow problems?
On paper, cash flow looks pretty uncomplicated – you charge clients sufficiently enough to offset expenses and bring in a profit. It seems even more straightforward when you and your client have agreed upon payment terms. Unfortunately, things are never as simple as they seem…
1) Asking for money is awkward
At first, this sounds ridiculous. We’re all in business, we’re all adults, how can asking to be paid for a service provided be awkward? And yet, if a debtor isn’t keeping to the payment terms and your cash flow is to some degree reliant on them, this can result in a very awkward if not frustrating situation.
2) Bad debtors
That sounds like we’ve just put some clients on the naughty list for Christmas! But some debtors are just bad at paying on time. There can be several reasons for this, the most likely one being they have a disorganised accounting system. Another cause could be that their business is like a duck treading water, maybe everything looks fine on the surface, but they are actually struggling. Or it is just as possible that you are not a priority for them and other debts come first!
3) Your accounting is disorganised
Do you have very clear payment terms in place? Are you quick to send a reminder to clients when they have gone past their payment period? Have you been too lenient in the past with clients and now they have become overly relaxed about paying their debts on time? When it comes to credit control, our advice is to run a tight ship. It is simply too important to the health of your business to take an ad hoc approach.
How Chaser whips your cash flow into shape
Chaser takes all this hassle out of credit control by combining cloud-based automation with that all-important personal touch. Chaser provides you with templates to design email chasers tailored to each of your clients. These emails will come from your email account so that the human touch is maintained. By setting up a schedule, emails are automatically sent out to clients when you want them to be. You can even turn up the heat by having later email chasers come from a more senior individual’s account! With various schedules and email templates available, you can set up Chaser to truly align with your business. Chaser is fundamentally designed to make your working life easier, so chasing up multiple invoices at the same time is a doddle and with Chaser’s collected insights and intelligence you can discover the best way to optimise your credit control system.
How to integrate Chaser with Xero
Are there any words more satisfying than “One-click integration”? Chaser quickly integrates directly and securely with your accounting system. You can integrate Chaser with Xero from either app. In Xero, the app store is called the App Marketplace and from there you can search for “Chaser” in the search bar. Once you locate the Chaser app, you’ll have the opportunity to check out reviews to see what other customers think of it. If you’re happy to go ahead, click the big green button that says, “Get this app” and you’re on your way.