Used as part of a digital communications preference centre, automated statement helps you improve businesses processes, reducing the number of challenges that typically arise from outdated manual delivery. Gone are the days of receiving statements in the post. The days of manually sending statements in emails are also over. Thanks to automated business processes, statements can now be prepared and delivered on schedule. Customers can pay bills more easily and keep their payment records updated quickly and easily. This helps to free up resources and streamline the financial processes at the same time.
Keep reading to find out how automated statement delivery can add great value to your business as well as your customers.
One of the biggest advantages of investing in a digital communications platform such as Grapevine Interactive is its ability to manage all business processes. Statement and invoice delivery is one of the most important processes for every business. Without having the right tools in place, it becomes much harder to send out bills and statements on time, let alone receive payments on time. Some of the ways that automated statement delivery can reduce these challenges include the following:
1. Reduces payment barriers
The easier you may it for customers to pay, the faster you will get paid. In many cases, invoices are not paid because bills and statements are not delivered on time or to the right channel. Unless customers receive these documents, they will be unable to make payments. Needless to say, this can have a knock-on effect, costing your business a great deal of money over time. In the event of unpaid bills, more time and costs can be spent on debt collection. A communications platform that offers statement delivery, as well as debt collection, will help to reduce common payment barriers.
To make it as easy as possible for customers to pay and stay updated on billing, statements should be sent according to a realistic schedule. This means sending out payment notifications well in advance of the payment due date. It also means sending payment reminders closer to due dates. Sending statements to the customer's preferred channel is also key to avoid late or non-payments. If some customers use SMS and others use email, you will need to ensure that you are sending statements to a channel that they use on a daily basis rather than send via one channel without giving customers a choice.
2. Less room for human error
As every single person who has received bills at some point knows, few things are more frustrating than billing errors. This can be one of the biggest complaints made by customers. It can have a major effect on customer perception. It can also ruin trust quickly. If mistakes happen once and they are resolved quickly, you might avert disaster. If it happens multiple times, you run the very real risk of losing that customer. Worse, you run the risk of customers complaining on social media, review sites, or even consumer complaints journalists that address constant problems facing customers.
An automated system will remove the risk of human error. As bills are not created, sent, and managed by billing departments, there is less chance of mistakes being made. Invoice numbers will not be written incorrectly. Names and other information is less likely to be entered incorrectly. Provided the system is managed and automated in a way that keeps data updated, you will have far less chance of expensive mistakes that cost your business dearly.
3. Improved customer experience
A seamless customer experience is essential. This applies not only to the interactions you have with your customers have through digital marketing campaigns. It also applies to the after-sales experience and customer care. Customers are starting to have higher expectations from companies. As more businesses move towards an automated model, those who are not able to streamline processes such as billing are being left behind. Customers do not want to receive bills in their postbox or get statements sent to email when they do not use email regularly. They do not want to get unexpected bills that arrive without any warning. They certainly don't want to get financial documents that are riddled with any errors.
What they do want is a fast, simple, and efficient way to pay bills and view statements. They want to know that they have a payment due on the second of the month. They want to be able to quickly go onto your payment dashboard and make the payment using their preferred payment option. They want to be sent statements on paid bills for their records. Automated statement delivery allows this to happen, resulting in a far better experience for customers.
4. Ensures regulatory compliance
As of 1 July 2021, the POPI Act is in full effect. This act governs the protection of information. How you collect sensitive data and how you manage and use it is vital for compliance. Failing to complain to regulations can result in large fines of up to R10 million. In some cases, it can result in jail time. This means that it is essential to have systems in place that collect, store and manage data securely. Automated systems will ensure peace of mind, which means that your customers will always know that data is secured and used in a way that does not risk breaches or other security issues. You will be able to avoid penalties while also building trust and improving your overall reputation.
5. Streamlines business processes
Finally, automated systems can greatly help to streamline processes as a whole. Document delivery is easily one of the most important business processes. Statements and other financial documents need to be managed and sent in a way that avoids delays, follows orders, and avoids disorganisation. An automated system will help you stay on track, freeing up available resources to spend on other business functions. This means that you will be able to streamline your processes without bottlenecks or other issues that arise from the manual management of statements and other documents.
Grapevine Interactive offers a fully integrated digital communications platform that combines all the tools you need to run your business more efficiently. From digital marketing to document delivery and other core functions, we help you engage your customers at every point.
Contact us today to learn more about our automated statement solutions.