SA postage is by no measure cheap, with a stamp currently priced at R3.05 – and sadly no guarantee that the envelope will be delivered to the rightful recipient, if at all.
Compounded with this is the additional time and expense incurred by a business to print, fold and insert the documents into envelopes.
Christopher de Zeeuw, MD, Capisol Software, says: “The South African economy has had to deal with the collapse of the postal system and the constricting impact on a company’s cash flow. Customers are not receiving their invoices or statements and even those that do, are afforded the excuse that the document went missing. We are finding that a lot of companies are being forced to manually deliver their invoices to customers or they are trying to send them out electronically.
“Despite the best efforts customers are still delaying payments due to the apparent non-receipt of documents and credit controllers are being forced to reprint, scan or fax copies of invoices that have already been posted or e-mailed. All of these duplicated actions incur unnecessary costs but more importantly impact adversely on a company’s cash flow by delaying cash collections.”
De Zeeuw, himself a CA(SA) who spent five years as an FD, personally experienced these frustrations and delay tactics by customers. “We had instances of where we couriered documents to a customer yet the customer still delayed payment on the grounds that the person who signed for the documents was not authorised to accept the package. We had tried sending documents electronically but there was never any way to prove customer receipt. The only way we managed to collect this debt was to reprint all the invoices again and for my credit manager and myself to personally deliver the documents to the client and have them acknowledge receipt.
“Sending out invoices in PDF format to customers does not reduce the excuses or the man power involved to collect monies due. Not only is no accounting system fully SARS compliant to deliver electronic invoices, but the customers continually keep requesting copy documents or copies of the supporting documents for invoices. I found that my debtors department was spending on average 25-30% of their time purely sourcing and resending documents to customers.”
So how does a business go about delivering their invoices and statements to a customer to ensure payment is received on time?
In a fast changing world of increased smart phones, computers and technology De Zeeuw felt that there had to be a quicker, better and smarter way to interact with one’s customer.
“Current e-mailing of a PDF document is no more effective at trying to collect ones money that it was 5 years ago to fax your invoice to a customer. You know it has been sent but no idea if ever received.”
De Zeeuw designed and developed CapiLink with the focus on reducing costs, generating efficiencies and ultimately improving a company’s cash flow. CapiLink is a cloud based electronic document delivery solution that assists companies to eliminate excuses for delayed cash collections forever by linking, auto-distributed and tracking all customer documentation in secure linked PDF format.
The power in CapiLink is its apparent simplicity which delivers incredible effectiveness. CapiLink integrates with the ERP systems to auto-generate the invoices before auto e-mailing to relevant customers. All e-mail interaction to customers are monitored so customers are no longer able to deny receipt of an invoice. Most importantly the encrypted PDF documents are linked to all supporting documents automatically which affords the customer instant access to all information they require with the power of a click.
CapiLink has been built on a Microsoft product stack and is platform and ERP independent. CapiLink offers a pay as you use pricing model with no CAPEX implementation cost or fixed term contract.
Any business executive interested in improving their business and or cash flow should consider embracing this phenomenally powerful piece of Microsoft technology, or at very least, give it a trial at no risk.