On the first day of Christmas:
review your invoicing procedures and ensure that your invoices are issued immediately and goods are shipped.
On the second day of Christmas:
update your cash flow projections to anticipate any Christmas shortfalls. Sales activity usually leaps 30 percent.
On the third day of Christmas:
review your stocks and supply chain, looking for ways to tighten ship or for old inventory you can quickly move on.
On the fourth day of Christmas:
consider shortening your payment terms or offer incentives to your debtors for settlement by new year.
On the fifth day of Christmas:
consider taking deposits when orders are made.
On the sixth day of Christmas:
monitor your increasing wage and supply costs – make sure you have a plan to stay cash flow positive.
On the seventh day of Christmas:
maintain your cash reserves by taking full advantage of the payment terms offered by your suppliers and paying on the last day, or ask for discounts for earlier payment.
On the eighth day of Christmas:
quickly chase up customers you know to be slow-paying, or consider asking them for up-front payment during the Christmas period.
On the ninth day of Christmas:
watch out for January – follow up outstanding invoices before your customers and their accounts departments go on holiday.
On the tenth day of Christmas:
sign-up for debtor finance for the option of receiving 80 percent of invoice values within 24 hours of issue, instead of offering debtors dicsounts for early settlement.
On the eleventh day of Christmas:
consider getting credit checks on any new customers to ensure that they can pay.
On the twelfth day of Christmas:
sit back, relax, say farewell to the crisis and welcome the new year!
– Rob Lamers is the CEO of cash flow finance specialist, Oxford Funding (a subsidiary of Bendigo Bank and Adelaide Bank).