Software can help track the bottom line
Payment for services is no longer a “money in, money out” transaction. With the integration of credit cards, computers and software, taking payment has become more about processing. Today’s software isn’t just for payment, but for creating a new system of handling multiple forms of payment, checking payment history and making better financial decisions.
“A well-designed rental management system will bill with accuracy and therefore there will be fewer billing disputes,” says Clark Haley, president, Automated Rental Management, San Antonio, Texas. “A rental system should be able to deliver invoices via fax or email, which means that a customer will have the invoices quicker and get them in to their system for payment quicker. Rental companies that do a lot of reoccurring business with their customers can accept electronic funds transfer (EFT) payments which precludes having to print a check, wait for the mail to arrive and then get it deposited. EFTs are posted directly to your account, much like a wire transfer. It is important that a credit card processing system be able to handle pre-authorizations as well as deposits and it should be able to apply deposits automatically when the contract is shipped or invoiced.”
Haley says speed and accuracy can improve cash flow, but they do not necessarily improve profitability. “Good rental management software can definitely improve profitability in a number of ways. Just a few examples are better forecasting of revenue/expenses, utilization tracking, parts inventory levels/tracking, delivery/pickup of equipment, job/event costing and management dashboards,” he says.
To read the rest of Whitney Carnahan’s story from the April issue of Rental Management magazine, click here.
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