The number of times I have heard that familiar saying. Your payment is in the next run and will be in your account on Monday, or Tuesday, or Wednesday. We all know it’s one of those fobbing off excuses; they can never confirm as to which week or even month …
What’s The World’s Greatest Lie?
Having good terms and conditions in place when it comes to business is so important. After all, you will never know when you will need to call upon the professional services of debt collectors.
Our procedures require us to send numerous reminders, which we do by email, after which we resort to contact by phone. It always amazes me how many departments or telephone numbers you speak to before you get anywhere close to talking to the right person. In the past few days, I have been advised by the general switchboard, that I needed a different number; not “I’ll transfer you“. So I call that number only to be told that the Account department has been moved – in this case to Ireland. Great! Another way of fobbing me off. Recently, I have been going through a rough patch where some of my credit accounts have not been paid within the agreed time set by my terms and conditions. The thing that I have found is that the bigger the company, the worse they actually are at paying.
Finally I get to the right department, only to be told that the person responsible is currently on the phone and if I leave a number she will call me back. Lie number two. As this point I start to boil and explain that having given my details and contact number for this person, 3 days on the trot, the chances are I will not be having a call back. As if by magic, she is suddenly able to take my call! I explained who I was, how long the account has been outstanding for and ask when I can expect the payment. Her reply was “it’s in the system to be run on the 19th August“.
Rage ensues, but I have to remain professional. I confirm the lady’s name and state that I have documented emails from herself which confirmed that the payment would be in my account by close of business over a week ago. She even tried to say that she did not send it. I explained that under the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act, I have been charging interest on the outstanding account and would now ask for that interest on top of the original amount, which is clearly stated in my T&C’s.
I told her that unless payment was received by the end of the next day, I would have no alternative but to make arrangements to recover the debt through a collections company. Her reply was quite abrupt: “go on then” she spat, then put the phone down. If anyone was in Milton Keynes about 4.30pm, you would have seen an inpromptu firework display as I went nuclear. Eventually I cooled down and called my solicitor.
I still have to recover this outstanding debt, but as the payment department is based in Ireland, it would not be cost effective to adopt the procedure I did the last time a big company failed to pay me on time.
I sat in their reception waiting until the payment was made. I even took a picnic, in case I was there for some time. The best part was when a sales rep came in and sat down by me. We got talking and I quietly said I was here to collect my outstanding account. I wonder if he did any business with them? Maybe not after talking to me!
Anyway, now I’m off to talk to a couple of debt collection agencies about recovering the outstanding money. It’ll cost a lot less than the solicitor sending one of their letters on my behalf.
Until next time …We expect our invoices to be paid within term, but we also understand small business cashflow so pay our suppliers on time too; it’s only fair! If you’d like to work with a professional PAT Testing company then call me on 0330 6600264 or click here to ping over an email and I’ll get right back to you.