The Ultimate Debtor Management Comparison - Part 2
The Ultimate Debtor Management Comparison – Part 2
Part 2 of 3
In this section of the Ultimate debtor management comparison, we are going to focus on the stand out features of Satago, Invoice Sherpa, Chaser, Ezycollect and Debtor Daddy. If you wish to review all the core functionality, please refer to this page for a comparison of each Addon side by side.
There are a few standout features about Satago that I really love, that I want to discuss in a bit more detail.
Accounts Receivable CRM
Satago has an accounts receivable CRM for comments and notes on customers and gives a clear oversight of any interactions between you and your customers. Notes can be both internal and public you can also put reminders on notes. The reminder notifications are on an internal calendar which you can review and click directly back to the customer for reference. The functionality of the CRM is a great feature for both the end user in tracking comments, and interactions as well as management staff overseeing the process, to ensure transparency in the whole process.
Risk assessment of Customers
This feature is powered by Experian credit risk management based in the UK. This feature alone is a must have if you are in the UK. The ability to assess credit risk is really important in the current markets, with so many business’s going into administration and closing down, this information is invaluable in navigating through challenging times.
Satago has a very comprehensive list of interactive charts and reports. Unlike many of the other AddOns in this space, Satago’s reporting is very powerful. With detailed Aged debtors, that are interactive and credit reports on customers via Experian to name a few.
However for me one of the most awesome reports was a report, breaking down your accounts receivable by risk, which is useful information required to assist in making the hard choice for critical litigation decisions or management decisions on key customers to focus on.
Chaser does one thing really really well, and that is chase invoices in a passive but consistent manner.
Chaser runs in two modes, one is automated and the other is a manual mode. Both the manual and automated modes utilise the heart of the Chaser engine and that’s the automated ‘Polite’ reminders.
Chaser has eight reminders that arrive out of the box, however you can add or delete how many reminders you want and also add two intensity levels of normal and escalated to assist in the intensity of the “chase”. Each reminder is set to the invoice due date as a point of reference and as the days pass, it automatically triggers an email reminder that escalates in intensity as the invoice progressively gets older.
The other key to Chaser is how easy it is to customise the email templates, and how you can get rid of that automated feel, and make it look like you took the time to actually email the customer personally. You can very easily duplicate your signature from your current email client so that it would have the very same look. Further to this the actual email template is very concise stating how much is owed, which invoice(s), and invoice numbers, and takes the liberty of also attaching the invoice for the customers reference.
The automated mode is setup to extract all the necessary information from the sales ledger out of Xero and ascertain which invoices are overdue and what stage they are at, it will then automatically send out the reminder emails and escalate as required. It will also pickup when the invoice is paid and send out a thank you – again a lot of nice features to keep building strong relationships which is really great. This feature can be toggled on and off with a master switch that is very prominently laid out on the menu in the startup screen.
As with any automated system, the dialogue is often one way. I think an element that is quite important in any relationship is having that two way interaction and being able to capture that, whether it’s a customer promising to pay on a certain day or building in a payment plan that can be emailed out. It would be great if the customer could then be reminded to stick to the plan they have agreed to. These are also important aspects of the chase.
Invoice Sherpa is almost an accounts receivable staff member coded, is the best way I can put it. It has some really great standard features, which are further enhanced by some standout solutions that give Invoice Sherpa a really complete feel to it in comparison to the other Addons reviewed.
Accounts Receivable B2B interface
The accounts receivable customer portal, which is not really new, but it is designed really well, giving you access to all your prior invoices as well as ageing all your current unpaid invoices, and also giving you the ability to update your company details live.
But the really useful side of this portal is that it allows you to have a dialogue between the customer and accounts person. Any disputed invoices, reasons for not paying, etc are all recorded so that all interactions between you and the customer are on record. This is also very useful for a senior manager or business owner to get up to speed very quickly on a difficult customer that requires special attention.
A couple of useful features in Invoices Sherpa’s reminder system are definitely worth mentioning.
Firstly it allows for you to schedule an actual “Human” phone call, provide by Invoice Sherpa’s inhouse agents, which I think adds another dimension that not many other solutions have.
Within their reminders is also an internal reminder to a staff member, perhaps the reminder can be sent to a sales representative to make a quick call/email with a friendly reminder as well as chase up more sales. Working as a company accountant this was often a normal part of my approach to chasing up money, a more soft and pro-active phone call from a sales representative often has a dual yield of getting a sale as well as getting paid any arrears.
Recurring payments allow you to automatically setup recurring invoices to have payments taken out of a credit card or a bank account via integration with a payment service like stripe, Ezidebit, etc. It is a simple and easy way to increase cashflow and get paid quicker essentially. Addons like uCollect which are standalone solutions also perform a similar service, however the fact that most of the functionality is built into Invoice Sherpa almost makes ucollect redundant.
When it comes to functionality, ezyCollect is right up there with the top tier debtor management addons. It really could replace the accounts receivable person in a small to medium sized business.
Accounts Receivable CRM
One of our favorite features in Ezycollect was the CRM type functions that accompany the customisable auto reminder emails, letters or statements (integrated with Australia post) and the ability to add tasks for the Accounts Manager based on the actions from the response (or lack of) of the customer. It’s also got a fantastic payment integration with Stripe that means you can get paid as soon as they receive the email with one click – anywhere in the world.
Credit Check – Veda
Another great feature for Australian and New Zealand business customers is the quick credit check report via Veda. It is a paid service at A$40 per report, but it’s certainly easier to do this than wait and find out that the customer isn’t a good payer. If you want to be even more proactive, it’s worth looking at the addon Creditor Watch – we believe it’s a must for all Australian businesses.
Debtor Daddy has a great little initial walk through that explains the key features:
- Everyday Debtor Daddy automatically connects to Xero and fetches your overdue invoices. Anything that’s overdue gets added to your Hit List where it is automatically assigned to a Collector – that’s a person in your organisation that’s responsible for approving the debtor chasing process and it’s automation properties.
- Collectors determine the frequency of your reminders. You can modify each collector to suit your needs. You can also choose which reminders are sent automatically and which ones require manual approval.
- The scheduled view shows you what reminders are going out tomorrow. From there, you can pause and cancel reminders.
- The Hit List includes a powerful search and preset filters so you can easily see the status of your reminders. From the Hit List you can assign collectors, pause reminders and see upcoming reminders for each of your contacts.
- You can mute contacts which prevents Debtor Daddy from sending reminders to specified contacts.
- You can configure collectors to suit your requirements.
- You can flick the switch to send reminders automatically or do it all manual?
Email everyday before anything gets sent
Once automatic reminders are enabled on your account, you will receive a Daily Reminder Schedule at 8am, your local time, the following morning. This email lets you know how many reminders are scheduled to go out and provide you with a link to the Scheduled Screen to view the reminders to go.
The final summation of the Debtor management Addons for Xero, will be completed by mid-week. Please subscribe to our newsletter if you wish to have updates and the best industry reviews on Addons for Xero.