To make your efforts turn to cash faster, it may be time to review your system for collecting and disbursing data that is eventually used to process billing. There is equipment available that allows field personnel to generate invoices right from the field. They can input both time and materials used right after completing the work, have the customer sign off on the invoice and have it to them the next day. The systems today are plentiful for your industry. If you need an upgrade, find out what other people are using and give it some thought.
Also get your suppliers involved in helping you benchmark your business and monitor your costs. Equipment dealers are more than willing to analyze your equipment costs and usage and offer suggestions to make your operation more efficient and profitable.
As business prospects improve, business owners must concentrate on getting new business and, more importantly, controlling the business on hand and in process. Getting your business in shape to allow you to do that needs to be a priority.
Garry Bartecki is director of dealer/distributor services at BDO Seidman, LLP of Chicago, IL, as well as a consultant to the AED. He has also worked as an independent CPA and consultant to equipment dealers. He can be reached at (312) 616-4677.