05/03/2018

Sales vs. Accounting: How to Spur a Truce with Technology

Greg Gillespie May 3rd, 2018

It’s an all-too-familiar tale: the divide between the sales and accounting departments.

Field representatives pounding the pavement to line up as many deals as they can. They’re building relationships and cultivating brand loyalty with their cash-strapped customers who have a sharp eye out for the best possible value for their dollars.

The field representatives collect payments from their large network of customers and sends the payments off for processing. The field rep has done their job, they’re making the company grow, right?

Wrong.

In the accounting department, a labor-intensive and sometimes lengthy process of sorting out some complicated details has started. For starters, there’s the manual process of reconciling the payment with the invoice. Finance departments can spend a lot of time doing detective work to try and find out which check needs to be applied to which line item in an account.

Sometimes, issues can pop up like weeds. For example, the producer could return to say the invoice is inaccurate because part of the order was missing or damaged, yet the documentation that supports this claim is missing. That forces the organization into a tough call. Do they choose between losing the profit this year or do they risk a lost customer next year?

At best, these scenarios can lead to tension between sales and accounting teams. At worst, it can cause conflicts with the producer and ultimately undermine the brand’s reputation.

How the right technologies can eliminate common billing hassles

Seed distributors are no strangers to adopting technology to make their business run more efficiently and more profitably. This is especially true when it comes to managing inventory. And the time is right to start exploring how the right technologies can do the same on the accounting side of the business. The right payment processing solutions can make it easier for sales and accounting to transfer money and information by automating the payment process for routine transactions.

Deluxe Treasury Management Solutions offers a variety of options that can smooth out that sometimes rocky information divide between the field and the accounting office, and simplify the steps to process routine payments. Here’s how it works.

The field representative collects the payment as usual, but instead of dropping off the stack of checks at the bank or mailing them off to the home office, they can process the checks themselves on the very same day, either on-site with a smartphone or tablet, or with a desktop check scanner.

As the picture of the check is uploaded, the field representative matches each payment with the correct invoice, eliminating a step back in the accounting office. Then, the payment is cleared and posted on the ledger.

When finance departments have the ability to receive and credit proper customer invoice and line items to each account, it prevents billing issues that would otherwise result in field reps getting kicked off the farm.

In the back office, it eliminates the time-consuming steps of reconciliation, it allows accounting personnel to put their focus and resources away from routine matters and direct them into more complex issues. Accelerating payment processing in the field means seed companies can get their straight-through processing as high as 95 percent, while achieving faster access to working capital with a large reduction in check float time.

Learn more about how we can help your organization improve access to working capital, achieve better financial health and improve the billing experience for your customers.