Best practices regarding commercial exceptions and control of large teams of field agents
Some losses can be minimized even from the beginning
Losses, employee productivity gains, collecting cash balances in time, or the correct and effective approach of customers who are bad payers are all difficult challenges to manager for a growing distribution company.
Cash-flow and profit margin are affected by this, and in the long run, such problems become more and more serious if nothing is done to solve them.
Problems occur when the exception becomes the rule
One of the most important things for an agent is the desire to reach the monthly target and get the sales bonus, but it is very important to look at how these results are achieved.
At the company level, over-crediting customers (especially bad payers) in order to reach targets can be the result of several factors such as:
- Increased number of field sales agents.A large team is harder to coordinate and control. In this case, everything changes and we talk about multiple orders, larger cumulative sums, or more places to visit. Each agent wishes to achieve his sales target and sometimes will request approval to take orders from customers locked with the Credit Controller. And when more and more such requests are gathered and approved without necessarily having a good reason and without recovering the money in the market, problems start to appear.
- Increased number of customers. The more clients in the portfolio, the more chances are that the number of bad-paying clients gets larger
- Supervisors are too flexible. Under the pressure of targets, supervisors can sometimes be too lenient with sellers or customers who do not pay their balances, and customer debt is getting bigger and harder to recover.
- Large fluctuation of staff in the distribution industry.New distribution agents do not know how to proceed in the event of exceptional situations such as managing orders from bad paying customers. If things are not well established and there are no credit limitations for customers created with the Credit Controller, then they may be tempted to continue selling to bad payers, or they may start calling the supervisors to ask how they should do things in the same way.
You need to pay close attention to this level so you will not have any problems because of the unpaid invoices.
Say stop to the over-crediting of bad paying customers through increased control and transparency
Definitely, you have for sure such customers, so controlling the takeover of orders that come with exceptional conditions is vital for you to limit your loss and cash-flow problems.
The control over exceptions appeared in the agent’s orders helps you as an administrator / manager or sales manager / general supervisor to find out in a detailed and transparent way what happen both on the field and at the headquarters.
The new HERMES Derogations module allows agents to take an order from bad payers only if that customer makes a payment on the spot for his delayed invoices or if it is approved a request for an order, which the field representative sends to the supervisor /headquarters.
By introducing this superior level of control through the Derogation Platform, you make informed decisions to properly control and filter the orders that come from the market so you do not lose money in the process.
The Derogations module gives you access to a large number of reports and information such as:
- Information about agents requesting derogations and those who usually cross the standard trade policy
- Who are the supervisors that approve the derogations and why they agreed to these exceptions
- Customer credit
- Discounts for customers
- Terms and payment terms
- Filters and reports per periods, employee, customer, exception status
- Other important customer history information such as balance, payroll, agent, current order, discount so that the supervisor has all the information he or she needs to decide whether or not to grant a derogation for the order.
Moreover, this module integrates 3 levels of derogations: discount, payment term and balance value, so you have the flexibility you need to decide which exception you agree with.
As a supra-control level, to ensure that the order exception has been approved for good reasons, you can combine different derogations levels and select one person or more in order to approve them.
Take control over the orders in the field and make sure you manage your orders correctly under exceptional conditions.
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