The best way to ensure that you get paid promptly is to ensure that you have good systems in place. Here are some tips to help.

Be choosy about extending credit

New businesses are typically eager to gain sales, and can sometimes feel awkward about putting customers through a credit application process. Credit is often automatically given to all customers, or extended on the judgement of the owner or manager without proper checks. This is a recipe for debt problems. If you must extend credit, make sure you have a proper process in place.

Be efficient and prompt at invoicing

Customers will often not pay until they have been invoiced, because the invoice provides a record of the transaction they need for their accounting, so invoice as soon as you can. The sooner you invoice customers, the sooner you can get paid. It really is as simple as that.

There is no rule that states invoicing should be left until the end of the month. Instead, complete invoices as sales are made and post them off promptly. If you can, email invoices to customers for a speedier way of getting the invoice to them.

Follow up unpaid invoices promptly

Once you have put in place an efficient invoicing system, don't waste the momentum by not following up overdue invoices promptly. The old saying ‘the squeaky wheel gets the oil’ is as true in business as anywhere else, so don’t be afraid to ask for what’s owed to you.

Manage your risks

Having a customer not pay or losing a customer isn’t great for any business – but for start-ups the impact can be much worse. Manage your risks by following some simple guidelines:

Beware of large orders

You may be delighted to get that large order, but what happens if you commit significant resources to fulfilling it and payment is delayed - or you end up not getting paid at all? If you get a large order, at least make sure you've checked your customer’s creditworthiness and received guarantees. If possible ask for a deposit or arrange for progress payments - these steps will both improve your cash flow and reduce your exposure.

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket 

It’s better to spread your risk over 10 smaller customers or clients than be dependent on one large customer for your business. If your business is dependent on one customer (or just a few customers), make customer diversification a top priority.

Stay up to date

If you are a new business, be aware that you could be a target for people who have exhausted their credit (and credibility) elsewhere. Limit your risk by following the procedures outlined in this guide. Joining networks, a local industry group, Chamber of Commerce or the Employers and Manufacturers Association (ask an ANZ Business Specialist for further details) will also help keep you in touch with what is happening in the business community.

Make it easy for your customers to pay

These days customers increasingly expect convenience – so offering a variety of payment options can both provide a better customer experience and help ensure you get paid promptly.

For example, ANZ offers a range of easy payment options including:

ANZ FastPay

ANZ FastPay is a mobile payment solution that lets you accept EFTPOS, Visa and Mastercard payments on the go anywhere, anytime. It also accepts contactless payments. That means you can get paid on the spot, saving you time and improving your cash flow.

ANZ eGate™

ANZ eGate™ is an easy, convenient and secure way to accept Visa and Mastercard payments securely via your online store, over the phone or by mail order. ANZ eGate™ your customers can buy from you anywhere, anytime.

Important information

The material is for information purposes only. You should seek professional advice relevant to your individual circumstances. While ANZ has taken care to ensure that this information is from reliable sources, it cannot warrant its accuracy, completeness or suitability for your intended use. To the extent permitted by law, ANZ does not accept any responsibility or liability arising from your use of this information. We recommend seeking financial advice about your situation and goals before getting a financial product. To talk to one of our team at ANZ, please call 0800 269 249, or for more information about ANZ’s financial advice service or to view our financial advice provider disclosure statement see