Being proactive means keeping a close eye on open invoices. Knowing what customers owe you, developing clear policies, and planning accordingly are incredibly for sustaining your business.
In QuickBooks Online, there are a few tools and simple review techniques you can incorporate into your workflow that will help you professionally manage open and overdue payments.
Why do I need to review open invoices?
The primary benefit is obvious – you want to get paid. But managing pending payments isn't only about keeping the lights on. If overdue payments pile up, they can become an avalanche that spills over into the rest of your business, stopping your operation dead in its track.
Be proactive with your accounts receivable and get ahead of issues before they impact your cash flow. Designate an individual on your team to handle this process. Establish a regular review process and set policies for how to handle late payment using the available tools in QuickBooks.
Get started reviewing open and overdue invoices
You can view all open invoice activity in the “All Sales” section of the Sales tab. The total number of open invoices and total amount owed to you are displayed in the orange and grey header boxes.
You can also chronologically sort invoices by “Status” from the “Invoices” tab.
There’s also a report for reviewing open invoices. Go to the Reports tab and search for “Open Invoice Report.” Set the report to criteria to “All Dates” and “Current” so you see all current outstanding invoice.
This report is effective because you get the data you need (invoice number, due date, and net terms by customer ) in a very clean format. You can save the report as a PDF (click the small gear icon in the corner) and send it to the member(s) on your team who need this information to follow up.
You can even schedule this report to go out on a regular basis. Start by emailing yourself a copy once a week and adjust as needed so you’re always on top of your accounts receivable. To schedule the report, click the “save customization” button in the corner.
Give the report a name (in this case, I went with something simple: “Open Invoices Weekly Report”) and decide who gets access to the data.
Go back to the Reports Tab and open your Custom Reports sub-tab. Your new report will be at the top of the list. Click the edit button next to the report to pull up this screen:
Enable the “Set email schedule” option and set the recurrence for how often you’d like this report emailed to you and your team.
By the way, you can use this workflow to schedule any report in QuickBooks Online.
Send Payment Reminders and Balance Forward statements as Batch Actions
Now you know how to stay on top of open invoices. What can you do to gently remind customers with outstanding balances?
There’s no single way to manage this process, but a rule of thumb is to practice restraint. Be firm but empathetic. Maintaining a positive relationship with your customers is arguably more valuable to your long-term success than the dollar amount you’d get from playing debt collector.
Any other tips I should keep in mind to be successful?
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