Introducing the Redesigned NACM NTCR Report

ntcr sample report image

CMA is proud to make available the newly redesigned NACM National Trade Credit Report (NTCR) to its members.

The report, which acts as the perfect complement to the major bureau reports, includes information from the majority of NACM affiliate members. The NTCR is especially excellent in industries such as: Construction, Steel, Metal and Aluminum, and covers companies throughout the entire United States.

New features include:

  • An advanced search function with more than 12 million trade lines.
  • Alerts, Collection Claims, international information, financial institution and banking data, bankruptcy and UCC filings, and corporate information (firmographics), where applicable.
  • A summary of the Top Industries Reporting data on the subject.
  • Charts and interactive graphs– for a comparison of Past due percentages, and DBT figures.
  • Redesigned report data to make it easier to read.
  • An option to request Public Record Data (at an additional charge).

We invite you to download a free sample report to see if this report will work for your company.

Additionally, the reports are available to CMA and NACM at a very low price, while data contributors get to enjoy 25 reports for free.

To start using the NACM NTCR Report, or to download a sample report, log in to anscers.com. Contact CMA at 800-541-2622 with any questions.

We look forward to hearing your feedback on the newly redesigned reports!

CMA Partners to Show Off anscersX Multibureau Trade Credit Report at Credit Congress

If you’re planning to attend the 2016 NACM Credit Congress in Las Vegas, June 12-15, one common product you’ll see at top vendor booths is CMA’s anscersX multibureau trade credit report, a single report that contains all the key elements about your customers’ paying habits needed to make most credit decisions.

Some of the credit industry’s top software companies soon will offer or have launched the anscersX report on their platforms , including TermSync, CreditPoint Software, Bectran, Credit & Management Systems Inc. (CMS), and eMagia/TheCreditApplication.com. Many will be demonstrating how anscersX can be accessed directly through their software at Credit Congress.

These leading software vendors will help their clients join the hundreds of companies who have already benefited from having instant access to this single report that contains all the key elements about your customers’ paying habits needed to make most credit decisions.

The anscersX multi-bureau trade credit report combines key factors from the three largest trade credit reporting agencies (Dun & Bradstreet, Experian and Equifax), giving credit managers the most complete payment story available. “The anscersX report offers some real advantages to anyone making a credit evaluation,” said CMA president Mike Mitchell. “Single-source Business Credit Reports are made up of accounts receivable data that has been contributed by companies, public record data and payment scores generated from the combination of this data. Since most companies that contribute accounts receivable data only send it to one provider (D&B, Experian or Equifax), using one report may provide only a piece of the payment habit story. I am thrilled that leading-edge software providers feel as strongly as we do that there is a real need for bringing this unique resource to the credit community, and I’m grateful that they are helping us introduce their clients to the power that the three largest credit bureaus can bring to credit decision-makers with limited time and budgets.”

The report, which is also available at www.anscers.com, ranges in price from $32.35 to $69.95, depending on the number of reporting agencies the user requests. Users control which reporting agencies are accessed for the report.

To learn more about the program, visit www.anscers.com or call 800-541-2622.

About Credit Management Association
Credit Management Association (CMA), which was founded in 1883, is a Glendale, Calif.-headquartered trade association with approximately 1,300 member companies representing over 250 different business categories selling regionally, nationally and internationally. CMA focuses on providing products and services that allow companies to make informed business decisions based on trade credit. CMA is one of the largest affiliates of the National Association of Credit Management (NACM), whose 45 affiliates serve all of North America. For more information, call 800-541-2622, or visit www.creditmanagementassociation.org.

New AnscersX Enhancements Give Credit Managers a Better Understanding of Their Customers, by Teresa Campos

anscersxIt’s been more than a year since the launch of the anscersX multibureau trade credit report, which offers credit managers a one-click look at credit scores of their customers from the three major credit reporting bureaus. Since the report was launched, we’ve listened to our users and are proud to announce some valuable additions to the report aimed at helping you make quick and well-informed credit decisions.

The improved report includes more flexibility for you to choose the data you need and the price you will pay. It is now up to you to select data from one, two, or all three of the bureaus included in the anscersX Report (Dun and Bradstreet, Equifax and Experian).

We have added valuable information from Equifax including:

  • The Ultimate Parent
  • Headquarters Site information
  • Alternate Company Names & DBA’s
  • Owner/Guarantor
  • An easy to read Average Days Beyond Terms graph
  • Additional Report Highlights (# of accounts, # of delinquencies, charge offs and more

We have added valuable information from Experian including:

  • Years in File
  • The Date of Incorporation
  • SIC Code
  • An Industry Risk Comparison

anscersX pricing, which ranges from $32.35 to $69.95 depending on the combination of bureaus you choose, is a truly unique product that paints a true picture of your customers to help you better manage risk.

For those who would like to learn more about anscersX, I invite you to participate in an upcoming webinar exploring the anscersX report citing specific examples from the report. You can register here.

To download a sample report, visit www.anscers.com or contact me directly if you have any questions at 818-972-5361.

CMA Moves its Headquarters to Glendale, CA

Dear CMA Member,

I’d like to share some exciting news with you: CMA is moving its headquarters to Glendale! Our new address will be 111 North Maryland Ave., Ste. 300, Glendale, CA 91206, effective March 16. Our P.O. Box address (P.O. Box 7740, Burbank CA 91510-7740) and phone number (818-972-5300) will remain the same. Our Las Vegas office remains at 3110 West Cheyenne Ave Suite 100, North Las Vegas, NV 89032, phone: 702-259-2622. Please update your address book accordingly.

We look forward to bringing you the same high standards of customer service and handling of all your risk management needs from our new location later this month.
If you have any questions, please let us know.

Sincerely,

Mike Mitchell
CMA President and CEO

Credit Management Association® Announces Details for CreditScape Spring Summit and Annual Meeting, Powered by UTA

 

CMA Event to Offer 360-Degree Overview of the Elements of an Efficient Digital Credit Department, March 24-25, 2016.

BURBANK, CA (January 21, 2016)–Credit Management Association (CMA) is collaborating with payment processing solutions partner United TranzActions (UTA) to educate credit professionals with a complete overview of the elements that make up an efficient digital credit department. The CreditScape Spring Summit and Annual Meeting, powered by UTA, takes place March 24-25, 2016 at the Island Hotel in Newport Beach, and features two days of workshop training, expert practical and legal advice, and networking with other credit professionals over the common theme of implementing automation tools and third-party services to increase the overall efficiency and performance of the credit operation.

“We received overwhelmingly positive feedback from participants at our inaugural CreditScape event last fall. Members and other participants told us that they really benefitted from the real-world case studies and practitioners who shared their experiences through panel discussions and workshops. Attendees also appreciated having vendors and sponsors included in problem-solving discussions. Sustainable learning is about shared knowledge and experiences, and this is one way that CreditScape Summits will keep participants ahead of the curve in an ever-changing credit landscape. This will also be much more interactive than the typical teacher-and-classroom experience our audience is used to. For those who are used to staring at their phones and checking email during these types of events, then CreditScape is not for you,” said CMA President and CEO Mike Mitchell.

“In conversations I’ve personally had with members, we believe that it’s not just about finding the right solution provider, but instead determining the diagnosis and solution to efficiency problems. With the help of some of our technology partners, including payment processing solution provider UTA, we’ve developed a program geared towards all sizes of credit departments. Our expert panels will take attendees through the entire life-cycle of process improvement, from identifying credit functions that can be improved through automation and/or outsourcing, to determining and implementing the right solution, to measuring results to determine success. Stay current on best practices and hear from practitioners who have successfully implemented electronic credit applications, A/R automations, business intelligence and other elements of the digital credit department,” Mitchell added.

“Preliminary discussions with CMA members and industry partners have uncovered various capabilities and core competencies that affect credit department efficiency, including automation tools, the quality of customer investigations and evaluations, building relationships with customers and sales, and differentiated collection approaches for large and small debtors.”

“Among the topics to be addressed at the Summit are automating the customer onboarding process, vetting your customers, automating your A/R management process, international resources and government automation tools, emerging technologies that may impact the credit department, and more. The program has a strong group of discussion-leader practitioners from leading companies such as Sony Entertainment, Equinix, Sysco Foods, Ganahl Lumber, Kendall-Jackson, Walters Wholesale, Watsco, SRS Distribution, UTA/United TranzActions, and the U.S. Department of Commerce. These are some of the subjects and practitioners that will drive content and discussion at CreditScape,” Mitchell said.

In addition to the educational program, CMA will also hold its Annual Meeting, which will include the installation of the 2016-2017 CMA Board of Directors, plus the presentation of awards for Credit Executive of the Year, Mentor of the Year and Student of the Year. The Annual Meeting will take place during lunch on March 25.

The event will be preceded by the Credit Executives Symposium on March 23 at the Island Hotel. The one-day event for CFOs and Credit Directors, offers high-level interactive discussions and workshops on the hottest topics in credit management. CreditScape Summits are offered in the Fall and in the Spring, focusing on different aspects of the Credit Management landscape. It is one in a series of in-person educational opportunities offered by Credit Management Association. To learn more about the other sessions and topics, visit www.creditmanagementassociation.org/events or call 800-541-2622.
About Credit Management Association

Credit Management Association (CMA), which was founded in 1883, is a Burbank, Calif.-headquartered trade association with approximately 1,100 member companies representing over 200 different business categories selling regionally, nationally and internationally. CMA focuses on providing products and services that allow companies to make informed business decisions based on trade credit. CMA is one of the largest affiliates of the National Association of Credit Management (NACM), whose 33 affiliates serve all of North America. For more information, call 800-541-2622, or visit www.creditmanagementassociation.org.

# # #

CMA Congratulates Recent NACM-Certified Professionals

The NACM professional certification program, sponsored by the National Association of Credit Management, has helped define and establish professional standards in this demanding and rapidly changing field, and fosters recognition of those individuals who possess special expertise. Among credit management professionals, the professional certification program is respected and appreciated. Not only is participation in the program a mark of distinction throughout the profession, but it offers expanded knowledge of the credit profession, better career opportunities, heightened professional recognition, and demonstration of standards of professional excellence.

Congratulations to the following Designees who passed their NACM-Certified Professional Certification exam in November.

• Diane Lukens, Village Nurseries (CBA)
• Trevor Kuramata, Reliance Steel and Aluminum Co. (CBA)
• Jonathan Chandler, Western Oilfields Supply Co. (CBA)
• Paul Wikoff, Wilbur-Ellis (CCE)

For those who are interested in obtaining their certifications, a free informational webinar explaining the benefits of the designation program is available on demand under the education tab at www.CreditManagementAssociation.org. CMA has scheduled its Winter courses for the Credit Business Associate (CBA) program, which can also be accessed via the education tab.

For more information on how to achieve your Designations, please contact Lisa Wong, Member Representative Associate at (951) 672-0581, or lwong@emailcma.org.

Again, congratulations to these members for their achievements!

Save the Date: Credit Management Association Announces CreditScape Spring Summit and Annual Meeting

— Expanded Two-Day Education Summit will be held March 24-25, 2016 in Newport Beach–

On the heels of its successful inaugural CreditScape Fall Summit in Las Vegas, Credit Management Association (CMA) has announced plans for an expanded Annual Meeting, which will include two days of focused credit management best practices training and workshops to help increase cash flow while reducing your company’s overall risk.

The CreditScape Spring Summit and Annual Meeting, March 24-25, 2016 at The Island hotel in Newport Beach, will feature two days of workshop training, expert practical and legal advice, and networking with other credit professionals.

“The Fall CreditScape event was born out of feedback from members who asked us for help with their collections processes. Survey results from the recent Fall event show that members appreciated learning from subject matter experts and seasoned credit professionals who shared their experiences through panel discussions and interactive workshops. We plan to take that feedback and build an even better program for the Spring,” said CMA President and CEO Mike Mitchell.

“CMA members are always looking for better ways to manage and maximize recovery of their receivables. We are weighing several options for the overall theme of the event, which the educational content will focus around,” Mitchell added. “And as we did in the Fall, we will incorporate the latest techniques in content delivery for adult learners to create a thought-provoking and practical meeting experience that produces valuable take-aways and sustained value for participants and their credit departments.”

Credit Management Association is currently developing the programming for the event, which is designed to propose best practices and methods to help companies increase their cash flow and reduce losses from their customers. Details about the program will be announced later this Fall.

In addition to the increased educational offerings at CreditScape, the event will also recognize the CMA Mentor of the Year, Student of the Year and Credit Executive of the Year.

The event will be preceded by the Credit Executive Symposium on March 23 at The Island Hotel. The one-day event for senior credit executives of national and global companies, offers facilitated discussions and workshops on the high-level and trending topics in credit management.

CreditScape Summits are offered in the Fall and in the Spring, focusing on different aspects of the Credit Management landscape. It is one in a series of in-person educational opportunities offered by Credit Management Association. To learn more about the other sessions and topics, visit www.creditmanagementassociation.org/events or call 800-541-2622.

CMA Congratulates Recent NACM-Certified Professionals

 

CMA Congratulates Recent NACM-Certified Professionals

Several CMA member individuals recently passed their NACM-certified professional certification exam, demonstrating standards of professional excellence.

BURBANK, CA (September 2, 2015)–The NACM professional certification program, sponsored by the National Association of Credit Management, has helped define and establish professional standards in this demanding and rapidly changing field, and fosters recognition of those individuals who possess special expertise. Among credit management professionals, the professional certification program is respected and appreciated. Not only is participation in the program a mark of distinction throughout the profession, but it offers expanded knowledge of the credit profession, better career opportunities, heightened professional recognition, and demonstration of standards of professional excellence.

Congratulations to the following Designees who passed their NACM-Certified Professional Certification exam on July 27.

• Todd Whiteside, CBF – E & J Gallo Winery
• Michael Nguyen, CCE – Ferguson
• Kimberly Wagenman, CBA – Cascade
• Bertha Pedulla, CBA – HD Smith
• Adam Moreno, CBA – Helena Chemical

For those who are interested in obtaining their certifications, a free informational webinar explaining the benefits of the designation program has been scheduled for September 30. In conjunction with this webinar, CMA has scheduled its Fall courses for the Credit Business Associate (CBA) program. The three courses needed to qualify to take the exam are Business Credit Principles (10-week course that begins Sept. 21), Financial Statement Analysis 1 (6-week course that begins October 6) and Basic Financial Accounting (start date TBD).

Additionally, students who are interested in the Credit Business Fellow (CBF) certification and have obtained their CBA can sign up for Business Law course on October 7. For more information on the programs, and to sign up for classes, visit http://www.anscers.com/upcomingevents.aspx. This is the last time these courses will be offered until next Spring.

For more information on how to achieve your Designations, please contact Lisa Wong, Member Representative Associate at (951) 672-0581, or lwong@emailcma.org.

Again, congratulations for your achievements!
# # #

 

Media Contact: Alan Dicker, adicker@emailcma.org

What are the benefits of contributing your company’s full A/R to CMA?

It’s easier than you think

 

Are you looking for an additional incentive to get your slower-paying customers to pay faster? Here’s one more: by submitting your accounts receivable data to Credit Management Association, you can positively (or negatively) affect your customer’s payment history, as the information is aggregated safely and securely with all other participating NACM affiliate information into the NACM National Trade Credit Report.

In your busy workplace, credit requests are constantly coming in, and it takes time to do the research to fill them out. By submitting your A/R to CMA electronically, your credit department operations will be more efficient and you will benefit from the collective results of other like companies.

Within your vertical market, the more information you submit, the more information reported, the more complete the credit reporting. In turn, those contributors will be better equipped to make business decisions based on extending trade credit. But to give you further incentive to submit your full A/R (other than providing an additional collections tool and saving time), here are some additional benefits.

  • Data submission is done over a safe and secure server, so you can be sure that your data doesn’t get into the wrong hands.
  • Thousands of companies like yours nationally contribute data to the database, accounting for more than 12 million lines of trade data, creating a greater likelihood you’ll find information about the companies you’re looking for.
  • Your actions can help reduce fraud in your vertical market.
  • Your actions support the NACM Credit Community.
  • Data contributors receive 25 free NACM National Trade Credit Reports annually.

We appreciate your support, as CMA aims to provide the most complete data to help guide your business decisions.

What are you waiting for? Call CMA’s Member Relations Department at 951-672-0581 and begin contributing now!

United TranzActions Signs Strategic Alliance with DadeSystems

United TranzActions, a leading payment solution provider, announced that it has signed an agreement with Miami-based DadeSystems, a provider of next generation payment solutions. The agreement will further expand UTA’s extensive payment processing offerings through the addition of DadePay AR Automation receivables management system and DadePay e-payments, the company’s electronic bill presentment and payment (EBPP) solution.

“UTA has a proven track record of helping clients increase efficiency, maximize revenue, reduce risk and decrease costs. Our solutions focus on these same bottom-line benefits. We look forward to joining forces with UTA and leveraging our combined capabilities to deliver ongoing value to their clients.”

Through the agreement, UTA clients will gain access to cutting-edge features including the ability to accept payments in any form—cash, check, wire, ACH and credit card—and then match those payments to open AR invoices. DadeSystem’s straight-through processing architecture delivers capabilities that will enable UTA clients to further increase cash flow and reduce days sales outstanding (DSOs), a key measure of the efficiency of an organization’s collection activities.

“The partnership between UTA and DadeSystems is an excellent alignment of complementary technologies and shared business philosophies,” said UTA President Dean Middleton. “Like UTA, DadeSystems is recognized for its next-generation payment processing software and personal service. Today’s complex, rapidly-changing payments environment requires innovative strategies and smart partnerships like this to ensure that our clients always have access to the most advanced solutions available in the industry.”

“We are thrilled to be partnering with such a well-respected leader in the payments industry,” said DadeSystems President and CEO Bill Zayas. “UTA has a proven track record of helping clients increase efficiency, maximize revenue, reduce risk and decrease costs. Our solutions focus on these same bottom-line benefits. We look forward to joining forces with UTA and leveraging our combined capabilities to deliver ongoing value to their clients.”

About DadeSystems

DadeSystems provides advanced payment processing solutions to financial institutions, wholesale distributors, property managers, healthcare providers, insurance companies and other organizations with complex payment system environments.

The company’s flagship offering, DadePay, is an integrated suite of payment processing solutions that leverages next-generation technology to accelerate payment processing speed, increase operational efficiency, eliminate unnecessary fees and dramatically improve cash collection. Supported by its team of industry professionals, DadeSystems delivers the technology and expertise organizations need to successfully navigate today’s complex payment systems environment and ultimately, improve their bottom line. For more information, visit: www.DadeSystems.com.

About United TranzActions

UTA is the result of a merger of National Check Trust (founded in 1991) and American Check Management (founded in 1996). UTA is now a leading payment solution provider and the largest check guarantee company in the industry. UTA is able to offer its clients a suite of programs guaranteed to maximize revenue and minimize risk, while delivering the highest level of customer support. UTA provides a wide variety of pre-built or customized gateway payment solutions that saves its customers time and money. From paper check processing, internet and fully integrated payment processing, each of our products is designed to deliver value and peace of mind with the industry’s most secure payment solutions. Specific products include Check Guarantee Services, Remote Deposit Capture with Guarantee, ACH Processing with Guarantee, Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment, Credit Card Processing, Virtual Lockbox, and Customized Online Bill Pay. For more information visit www.unitedtranzactions.com

Dun & Bradstreet Announces New Brand Modernization

DB_WORDMARK_Pantone

Dun & Bradstreet (NYSE: DNB) recently unveiled a new brand purpose, values, tagline and logo as part of a major brand modernization effort. The company’s new creative expression and tenets are rooted in a data inspired, relationship-driven approach, bolstered by the new tagline: “Growing relationships through data.”

The announcement comes on the heels of a yearlong activation of Dun & Bradstreet’s new growth strategy, which has included both internal and external investments across the business, and a revitalization of the company’s global culture. Dun & Bradstreet has made a number of strategic acquisitions to expand capabilities, and formed alliances and partnerships to more simply and efficiently deliver key data, insights and analytics to customers.

“Data is the key driver of innovation in today’s business environment, and we have continued to invest in this differentiating asset. But decisions, inventions and investments are made by humans, and we help customers make sense of the massive amounts of data they have to connect them with the people, ideas and opportunities that matter,” said Bob Carrigan, chief executive officer & president, Dun & Bradstreet.

CEO Bob Carrigan joined Dun & Bradstreet in October 2013 with a vision to build long-term sustainable growth and modernize all aspects of the company. Carrigan, with support from the executive leadership team, is leading that vision with a far-reaching brand modernization that will be implemented within Dun & Bradstreet’s products and solutions, content delivery, go-to-market strategy, internal employee programs and all external positioning.

For more information about Dun and Bradstreet’s products, contact Terry Campos at 818-972-5361 or tcampos@emailcma.org.

Announcing The Construction Credit Report: One Report Does It All

octo_contractor
One Report Does It All

The Construction Credit Report is a new single-source report providing critical construction related data

 

Yesterday, industry leaders in business credit data exchange on the West Coast– Credit Management Association® (CMA), Ansonia Credit Data and Southwest Business Credit Services– released THE Construction Credit Report, providing companies in the construction industry all the critical information they need to facilitate sales to their customers.

The Construction Credit Report makes data available to construction companies immediately via the internet, including title search (with live links to actual documents) on mechanics lien filing/release; notice of completion; notice of Lis Pendens (action/discharge); public records search on bankruptcy; tax lien or judgment; active trade lines; credit analysis and score; collection agency and factoring company activities; and links to state Registrars Of Contractors. Each report is available for $29.95.

“The report gives someone in the construction industry all of the data they need to know about the amount of risk associated with a construction project in one place,” said CMA President and CEO Mike Mitchell. “There’s nothing else like it on the market to my knowledge. In the more than 30 years of experience that CMA has in the Construction Forms Filing business, our customers have asked us for this type of report, but we previously didn’t have the technology to allow us to provide it. With the help of our partners, we believe the report will save our customers countless hours searching for this type of data in multiple places, some of which is exclusive to this report. The information gained from the report can potentially save our customers tens of thousands of dollars by helping them avoid over-extending credit to risky companies.”

Rich Adams, President and CEO of Southwest Business Credit Services, concurred. “The data contained within the report helps material suppliers, general contractors and project lenders perform due diligence on their customer as well as the projects they will be supplying materials, labor or financing for. The ability to confirm that a contractor is licensed to execute the work they’re going to do, pays their bills on time, is free of liens, judgments and the like all in one report is previously unheard of in my 35 years in business credit,” he said. “This report will help you determine the maximum dollar value your company should risk for any project that your customer is bidding on or that you plan to supply materials for.”

Bill Weiss, Vice President of Sales for Ansonia Credit Data, agreed: “The depth of the credit-related information available on this report, coupled with technology that not only captures mechanic lien and title detail but can also download the actual documents, makes this offering unique. There is so much useful information available – it really makes the credit department’s job much easier to have all of that information in one place without having to search for it.”

To use the Construction Credit Report, log in to anscers.com, ansoniacreditdata.com or swbcs.com

View a Sample Construction Report

The Construction Credit Report is one of many services available to material suppliers, construction companies, bonding companies and lenders from CMA, Ansonia Credit Data or Southwest Business Credit Services including assistance in filing mechanics liens and preliminary notices, lien warning notices, bond claims and stop notices. For more information, visit http://creditmanagementassociation.org/services/construction-forms-filing/,
http://www.ansoniacreditdata.com, or http://www.nacmaz.org/.

CMA Creates Resource to Manage Vendor Relationships

Supplier Risk Management Group
Supplier Risk Management Group

Supplier Risk Credit Group to provide tools to help companies avoid business disruption.
Credit Management Association recently announced that credit professionals will now have access to tools that will help them assess the riskiness of a vendor with the formation of the association’s new Supplier Risk Credit Group. Comprised of credit and risk-management professionals from medium to large-sized businesses, the group offers resources and provides best practices to help companies manage their vendor relationships.

“We’ve had a number of responses from our members asking for a resource like this one, as many of our member companies have expanded the credit departments’ risk management role to include key suppliers,” said CMA president Mike Mitchell. “There has been a tremendous increase in the number of companies evaluating the risk and cost of business disruption when vendors are unable to deliver goods for reasons ranging from economic to political. Credit Managers deal in risk evaluation daily. They have the skill set necessary to transition from customer analysis to vendor. This new group will help companies assess their exposure to vendor failure, develop, implement and maintain a process to evaluate risk and gather business intelligence more efficiently and cost effectively,” he added.

“During my time in credit management, I’ve often heard the following: ‘We can survive if a customer relationship goes bad, but we cannot survive if one of our primary or secondary vendors has an interruption in delivering product, raw materials or services to us. For that reason, we invest an equal amount of resources investigating our vendors,'” said CMA lead group facilitator Larry Convoy, who will be CMA’s liaison for the new group. “I’m very excited to add this service for our members, as these relationships can make or break their businesses.”

Chaired by volunteer Alvin Moreno of Nestle, the Supplier Risk Credit Group held its initial information session in January, and the response was overwhelmingly well received by member companies who attended. “Moreno will do a great job with this group, especially since he just received his MBA with a focus on this topic. The existence of this group is a huge advantage for our members that can provide information that they cannot efficiently get any place else,” Mitchell added. The first official meeting is slated to take place at the CMA Annual Meeting, which will be held April 22, 2015 in Burbank, CA.

The group, which is one of 60 industry and topic specific groups that CMA offers, will meet quarterly via phone and in person. To learn more about this group, or any of the other groups and how they can help businesses minimize risk, visit http://creditmanagementassociation.org/services/industry-credit-groups/ or call 800-541-2622.

Credit Paradise: CMA Announces Schedule For 2015 Annual Meeting

Credit Paradise
CMA Annual Meeting

Credit professionals will experience a “Credit Paradise” on April 9, 2015 at Credit Management Association’s Annual Meeting. Taking place at Disneyland’s Paradise Pier Hotel in Anaheim, California, the “Credit Paradise” event includes a full day of training, education, awards and networking opportunities with other credit professionals.

“The Annual Meeting allows CMA members from all over California and Nevada the opportunity to learn about the latest trends affecting the credit profession, growing their personal and professional skillsets,” said CMA president Mike Mitchell. “Last year, we addressed the relationship between the sales and credit departments, and received some of the best feedback scores we’ve ever had from our exit survey. This year, we’re looking to build on that positive word of mouth and create a program to allow attendees to create a ‘Credit Paradise’ in their offices.”

Among the highlights of the education program, Jodi Walker will present the keynote address on utilizing creativity to move beyond “business as usual.” Walker is an award-winning speaker who is known for her high-energy presentations. “The topic should resonate with credit managers, as research has shown that five of the world’s largest economies are currently operating with a creativity gap,” Mitchell added.

“Securing transactions is a hot topic in credit management,” Mitchell said. “We thought we’d take a different approach this year and address the topic in a panel discussion with three expert speakers and a moderator who each have a different take on the subject.” Moderated by Diana Crowe of IAB, panelists for the discussion include Jerry Bailey (NCS), Milene Apanian (Law Offices of Abdulaziz, Grossbart & Rudman) and Rudet Fountain (United TranzActions). “The interactive session will include an audience question-and-answer opportunity, so attendees are encouraged to bring their questions to address the panel,” he added.

Popular speaker Rita Jo Schilling will present a discussion on understanding different communications styles in order to help create lasting relationships with others.

In addition, a designated networking reception (sponsored by D&B), a lunch session (sponsored by AG Adjustments) which honors the achievements of CMA’s members, and several Industry Credit Group meetings will take place at the event.

The Annual Meeting is the largest in a series of in-person educational opportunities offered by Credit Management Association. To learn more about the other sessions and topics, visit www.creditmanagementassociation.org/events or call 800-541-2622.

Save the Date: CMA Announces “A Credit Paradise,” the 2015 Annual Meeting

Credit professionals will experience “A Credit Paradise” on April 9, 2015 at Credit Management Association’s Annual Meeting. Taking place at Disneyland’s Paradise Pier Hotel in Anaheim, California, the “A Credit Paradise” event includes a full day of training, education, awards and networking opportunities with other credit professionals.

CMA is currently surveying its members about the resources that would be “A Credit Paradise.” The results of this survey will direct the event’s education and training topics. Details about the program, including the keynote speaker and education topics, will be announced in early 2015.

The Annual Meeting allows CMA members from all over California and Nevada the opportunity to learn about the latest trends affecting the credit profession. Last year, the event addressed the relationship between the sales and credit departments, and received some of the best feedback scores it’s ever had from the exit survey. In 2015, CMA is considering valuable training programs and topics requested by its member so they can attain ‘A Credit Paradise’ in their offices.

The Annual Meeting is the largest in a series of in-person educational opportunities offered by CMA. To learn more about the other sessions and topics, visit www.creditmanagementassociation.org/events or call 800-541-2622.

New CMA member benefit: The Interface Financial Group to Offer New Source of Working Capital for Small Businesses

We are excited to announce that CMA and The Interface Financial Group (IFG) have announced a partnership that will offer small businesses an alternative source for working capital. IFG will be working with members of Credit Management Association (CMA) and their at-risk customers to provide working capital through receivables financing to companies who are unable to receive traditional bank funding.

This partnership will help both CMA members and their at-risk customers by providing alternative sources of funding to companies that wouldn’t otherwise have been able to access these funds.

Charles A. Schultz Jr., a former restructuring and turnaround consultant who runs the Las Vegas office of IFG and will be a point of contact, was most recently with a New York City-based boutique consulting firm, where he provided turnaround and restructuring services, and interim leadership within diverse companies. With his diverse background, he achieved results from foreclosure-to-corporate-sale transformations and large-scale operational expansions through such strategies as business plan development, cash flow planning, budget development, negotiations, right-sized operations, and crisis management planning.

IFG’s solutions are specifically designed for small business, and programs can be tailored to each individual business from a service mix that includes invoice discounting, purchase order funding, and inventory financing. IFG also works closely with local banks to make available the working capital business owners need.

Schultz previously held Director of Finance and Assistant Controller positions with a startup sub-prime consumer finance company, and served as Comptroller of the then third largest financial institution in the state of Nebraska.  Over the past 20 years, he has conducted numerous presentations and training seminars in the restructuring and banking industries.

For more information on these services, contact Charles and Karin Schultz, 702-636-8644, schultz@interfacefinancial.com, or via the web at http://ifgnetwork.com/cmaca/.

U.S. International Trade Administration Renews Educational Resources Program for Credit Management Association Members

Credit Management Association® (CMA) and the International Trade Administration (ITA) of the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) have agreed on an extension to its Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), titled the “U.S. Trade and Investment Expansion Partnership,” that will help credit and risk management professionals gain access to educational resources needed to expand their businesses nationally and globally.

The agreement, which now goes through Sept. 30, 2015, was signed at the recent CreditScape Conference in Las Vegas by CMA president Mike Mitchell and U.S. DOC representative Richard Swanson, at the event, which represents the largest gathering of credit managers on the West Coast. Upon completion of the contract, the program will be up for renewal for a third time.

The agreement, which was originally signed earlier this year, continues the relationship between CMA and the U.S. Department of Commerce, to promote international trade to CMA’s members by increasing awareness of the economic benefits of exporting, and educating them on trade activities as a job creation and growth strategy, emphasizing the small- and medium-sized businesses that make up CMA.

Through this program, CMA and the DOC have begun jointly developing a series of educational webinars and events on topics such as exporting to Latin America and Mexico that was offered at the CreditScape Conference. Other topics are likely to include the importance of trade and business investment and associated benefits to the economy, export and business investment opportunities, and ITA’s role in opening foreign markets to U.S. exporters. Additionally, this partnership creates the platform to engage in a dialog between CMA and the DOC. The program expands upon the resources of another CMA-sponsored service, the Global Trade Credit Consortium, which offers assistance for companies that sell internationally by providing access to letters of credit, international collections, banking resources, credit insurance, international credit reports, and education and training.

“In this global economy, CMA is constantly evaluating which programs and services it offers that will help our members the most,” said CMA President Mike Mitchell. “Participation in this project furthers CMA’s programs such as the Global Trade Credit Consortium which encourages the economic growth of its members and other small and medium-sized businesses, and gives them access to some high-powered government resources on these topics. CMA is helping its members to better understand how to navigate and effectively compete in a global marketplace.”

“The function of the ITA is that it strengthens the competitiveness of U.S. industry, promotes trade and investment, and ensures fair trade through the rigorous enforcement of U.S. trade laws and agreements. ITA works to improve the global business environment and helps U.S. organizations compete at home and abroad,” said Eddy Sumar, CMA Director of Educational Services. “The goals of this U.S. Trade and Investment expansion partnership are to increase the economic benefits of trade; educate the public on trade activities as a job creation and growth strategy; to create general awareness of ITA and other government resources, and encourage U.S. businesses interested in exporting and foreign businesses interested in investing in the United States to seek the assistance of ITA. I can’t wait to announce some of the great training programs that we have planned.”

“In the coming months, CMA members will be reading more about these developments via CMA’s social media sites, blog, newsletter and other communications. I am very excited about the growth possibilities of this program,” Sumar added.

These educational sessions will complement the dozens of annual seminars, webinars, courses, conferences and training sessions that CMA offers. For details on other offerings, visit www.creditmanagementassociation.org/events.

Rich Swanson, USFCS Pacific South Region, and Mike Mitchell, CAE, President & CEO, CMA (Credit Management Association) sign the MOA at the CreditScape Conference at the Palms Hotel, Las Vegas on Thursday, October 16, 2014.
Rich Swanson, USFCS Pacific South Region, and Mike Mitchell, CAE, President & CEO, CMA (Credit Management Association) sign the MOA at the CreditScape Conference at the Palms Hotel, Las Vegas on Thursday, October 16, 2014.

Pictured in the photo: Front row: Rich Swanson, USFCS Pacific South Region and Mike Mitchell, CAE, President & CEO, CMA (Credit Management Association). Second row from left to right: Melissa Kobus, Chairman of the Board, CMA; Bob O’Brien, Director Channel Partnership Development, D&B; Eddy Sumar, President, ER$ Consulting Services; Andrew Edlefsen, Director, USCS, USEAC.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Credit Management Association Expands Construction Forms Filing Services

CMA is excited to announce that it has published a series of enhancements to its Construction Forms Filing Services (CFFS) on CMA’s website, CreditManagementAssociation.com. The site, which serves as a point of reference for those who supply materials or labor to construction projects, equips companies with the tools to protect their lien rights under the law. The service assists those customers who file or pursue preliminary notices, notices of intent, mechanics liens, releases, stop notices, bond claims, foreclosures, or other legal actions pertaining to construction.

A free service to all those in the construction industry, CMA’s Lien Provision Assistance Guide provides a summary of the provisions to meet individual state statutes in all fifty states. To view the guide, go to http://creditmanagementassociation.org/services/construction-forms-filing/lien-provision-assistance-guide/. This guide will assist any company working public, private or federal construction projects. The guide identifies each state and the time requirements for each form in that state depending on the type of project.

CMA has upgraded its reminder system incorporating the Lien Provision Assistance Guide with the CFFS service module on www.anscers.com. The system allows users to create reminders that are web, email or Outlook calendar based throughout the lifecycle of a construction project. As users create reminders, they can review the lien provisions for each state to ensure they pick the right follow-up dates for their project.

This rounds out CMA’s other recent enhancements, which include importing multiple Preliminary Notice Requests using Microsoft Excel and providing access to detailed monthly usage reports, creating a state-of-the-art forms filing service from CMA.

“These new features greatly expand the benefits of our Construction Forms Filing capabilities,” said CMA president Mike Mitchell. “We listened to the feedback of our customers, who have requested changes that would help them file their forms online, and their suggestions have helped us deliver a better product,” he added.

CFFS services currently allow construction suppliers to request preliminary notices and record mechanics liens in all states and Guam; as well as request mechanics lien releases; lien warning notices; bond claims and stop notices. Other benefits of using CMA’s CFFS services include online filing and notice tracking; no set up fees or minimum orders; same-day service when rapid filing is required; automatic verification of ownership and parcel information; CMA member and quantity discounts; and the availability to send progress releases at no charge.

“Our rates have always been competitive with similar services, and these enhanced features improve an already good product. The site can be tailored to fit individual needs, and the pricing is more cost-effective than filing in-house. CMA is even licensed and bonded for our customers’ protection,” Mitchell added.

For pricing information, visit CMA’s website at http://creditmanagementassociation.org/services/construction-forms-filing/ or call CMA at 800-841-5793 for more information.

U.S. International Trade Administration to Offer Educational Resources to CMA Members

Credit Management Association® announced that it has entered into a strategic partnership with the International Trade Administration (ITA) of the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC). The Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), titled the “U.S. Trade and Investment Expansion Partnership,” will help credit and risk management professionals gain access to educational resources needed to expand their businesses nationally and globally.

The agreement, which represents a relationship between CMA and the U.S. Department of Commerce, will promote international trade to CMA’s members by increasing awareness of the economic benefits of exporting, and educating them on trade activities as a job creation and growth strategy. As part of the agreement, CMA will work with the DOC to increase trade and business investment awareness among the U.S. business community, emphasizing the small- and medium-sized businesses that make up CMA.

Through this program, CMA and the DOC will jointly develop a series of educational webinars on topics such as the importance of trade and business investment and associated benefits to the economy, export and business investment opportunities, and ITA’s role in opening foreign markets to U.S. exporters. Additionally, this partnership creates the platform to engage in a dialog between CMA and the DOC. The program expands upon the resources of another CMA-sponsored service, the Global Trade Credit Consortium, which offers assistance for companies that sell internationally by providing access to letters of credit, international collections, banking resources, credit insurance, international credit reports and education and training.

“In this global economy, CMA is constantly evaluating which programs and services it offers that will help our members the most,” said CMA President Mike Mitchell. “Participation in this project furthers CMA’s programs such as the Global Trade Credit Consortium which encourages the economic growth of its members and other small and medium-sized businesses, and gives them access to some high-powered government resources on these topics. CMA is helping its members to better understand how to navigate and effectively compete in a global marketplace.”

“The function of the ITA is that it strengthens the competitiveness of U.S. industry, promotes trade and investment, and ensures fair trade through the rigorous enforcement of U.S. trade laws and agreements. ITA works to improve the global business environment and helps U.S. organizations compete at home and abroad,” said Eddy Sumar, CMA Director of Educational Services. “The goals of this U.S. Trade and Investment expansion partnership are to increase the economic benefits of trade; educate the public on trade activities as a job creation and growth strategy; to create general awareness of ITA and other government resources, and encourage U.S. businesses interested in exporting and foreign businesses interested in investing in the United States to seek the assistance of ITA. I can’t wait to announce some of the great training programs that we have planned.”

“In the coming months, CMA members will be reading more about these developments via CMA’s social media sites, blog, newsletter and other communications. I am very excited about the growth possibilities of this program,” Sumar added.

These educational sessions will complement the nearly 100 annual seminars, webinars, courses, conferences and training sessions that CMA offers. For details on other offerings, visit www.creditmanagementassociation.org/events.

Learn to Earn USA Program targets disabled veterans for the Credit Boot Camp

Tony Gaeta of Learn to Earn USA
Tony Gaeta of Learn to Earn USA

CMA is working with Tony Gaeta of Learn to Earn USA to bring Eddy Sumar’s Credit Boot Camp to disabled veterans looking to find jobs through training in commercial credit and collections. To promote Learn to Earn USA, Gaeta gave disabled veteran Freddie Sprankel a set of AFC championship game tickets donated by former quarterback for the Denver Broncos Jake Plummer. Denver 9 News interviewed Gaeta and Sprankel:  http://lnkd.in/bQ7kZXT

CMA is excited about working with Learn to Earn USA to help veterans find jobs through training in commercial credit and collections. Through Learn to Earn USA, CMA will be able to expose veterans and their spouses to the many career opportunities that exist in business credit and customer finance, and help them attain entry-level skills and training that could lead to productive, well-paying jobs that receive little notoriety in most college and trade skills programs. Learn to Earn USA will give CMA a unique opportunity to fulfill its mission of advancing the credit profession by promoting a career path that goes largely unsung and by helping member companies find qualified candidates who will receive proper training from industry experts.

For more information about Learn to Earn USA visit http://www.learntoearnusa.org/

Small Business Credit Index – Q3 2013

Small Business Credit Index
Small Business Credit Index

Credit quality for small businesses improved in the third quarter, lifting the Experian/Moody’s Analytics Small Business Credit Index 2.3 points to 118.5. Indicators show that the small business lending market is starting to thaw. Small companies are developing a bigger appetite for credit, and banks are loosening credit standards.

The improvements, however, come at the risk of putting off investment, lower wages and deferred hiring. Government policy uncertainty and consumer spending growth also contribute to slower growth.

The Q3 2013 Experian/Moody’s Analytics Small Business Credit Index can help you with your business decisions and forecasting. The index includes:

  • The overall performance of small business in Q3
  • The potential impact of the government shut down and policy uncertainty
  • The credit performance differences across U.S. regions

Get a copy of the full report.

CREDIT MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION & AG ADJUSTMENTS FORM ALLIANCE

Strategic Alliance
Strategic Alliance

AGREEMENT ASSURES SUPPORT FOR STRONG ECONOMIC GROWTH

BURBANK, CA – Credit Management Association® (CMA), which provides extensive services to companies and corporations that sell goods and services through credit transactions, has formed a strategic alliance with AG Adjustments (AGA), one of the nation’s most trusted and respected business-to-business collection agencies in the U.S. The alliance blends the expertise and reach of two of the nation’s largest credit management entities. The agreement will take effect rapidly, launching on November 1, 2013.

CMA chose AG Adjustments as their strategic partner to support the economic growth CMA’s membership predicts as they see a trade credit increase in the marketplace. “Our membership is at the center of day-to-day commerce and our members, credit professionals in a variety of industries, show renewed optimism,” says Mike Mitchell, CMA CEO.

CMA polls its membership quarterly with a Credit Confidence Survey to assess their businesses’ current status and anticipated growth. “Our Credit Confidence Scores show a slow and steady growth in confidence. Our members are convinced that the economy is ready to grow and they are ready to extend credit and take risk,” says Mr. Mitchell. “They’re on the front lines, so when they tell us things are going to improve, we need to do all we can to support them, including helping them manage risk. Our partnership with AG Adjustments will ensure our members receive excellent service and high rate of return on past due accounts that head to AGA for collection.”

The agreement with AGA will deliver AGA’s commercial collection services to CMA members. CMA will outsource their collection operations to AGA and CMA’s members will benefit from AGA’s decades of expertise in the commercial collection market. AGA clients will also have ready access to CMA services, which range from industry-based credit management working groups to cost effective construction industry services and CMA’s popular credit management data base, anscers.com.

Robert Gerstel CEO of AGA says, “From wholesalers to manufacturers, from distributors to finance companies to service providers – across the spectrum – the businesses which drive the economy are built on credit. Collecting on your accounts receivable is an essential by-product of that system; it assures adequate cash flow. Our services, merged with CMA’s, will help all our customers work at their best. When credit is strong, our economy is strong, but you still need to collect your cash. Our alliance will help the thousands of businesses which make the economy hum.”

Credit Management Association, which serves industries primarily located in the western U.S., is headquartered in Burbank, CA, and operates a second full-service office in Las Vegas. AGA provides collection services across the nation from its New York base.

Credit Management Association® (CMA), is a non-profit association that has served business-to-business companies since 1883. CMA delivers a variety of services to large and small companies across the full spectrum of the business credit economy. In addition, CMA assists insolvent companies with workouts or liquidation through cost-effective alternatives to bankruptcy. It is one of the largest affiliates of the National Association of Credit Management (NACM).

AGA is a commercial debt collection agency based in Melville, New York. AGA is a charter member of the Collection Agency Association of the Commercial Law League of America and a Platinum Partner to the Credit Research Foundation. Thousands of leading manufacturers, wholesalers, distributors and finance companies rely on AGA to help sustain a healthy balance sheet while adding profits to the bottom line.

New Business Credit Report Combines Data from Major Providers

anscersX Combined Business Credit Reports offer easy access at a reasonable cost for data from Dun & Bradstreet, Equifax, Ansonia Credit Data and Credit Management Association on one report.

April 18, 2012 – Burbank, CA – In response to requests for easier access to information and a growing preference for transactional reports over credit reporting contracts, Credit Management Association™ (CMA), in partnership with the Trade Information Exchange TM (TIE), has launched the anscersX Combined Business Credit Report.

“CMA’s membership represents many small to medium sized companies,” says Michael Mitchell, President of CMA. “They are requesting comprehensive information on potential and existing customers at prices that fit their budget. anscersX Reports combine data from major providers giving them a more complete picture of their customers on one report.” CMA Members appreciate the ease of access to data from multiple providers without contracts. Diego Jimenez, Credit Analyst, Accuride International, Inc. agrees, “I really like that there is more than one provider on one report.”

Combining data from D&B, Equifax, CMA and Ansonia Credit Data is a unique approach developed by the Trade Information Exchange. “We put a lot of effort into combining the data from multiple data sources in an easily understandable way,“ offers Robert Shultz, Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Partnerships at TIE. “Additionally, on the anscersX Report we have introduced a combined credit score incorporating data from Equifax, Ansonia and CMA.”

The anscersX Report is helping credit departments with limited time and resources gather credit information quickly. “It is worth it to get an answer in minutes as opposed to calling all the trade references on a credit application,” says Mary Donaldson, Office Manager, Worthen Equipment Inc.

The anscersX Combined Business Credit Report is available on a transactional basis online by registering on CMA’s services site anscers.com. Pricing is $51.95 or less depending on the data sources you choose. There are no contracts, no minimums, no hassles and instant access. Judy Bennett, Credit Manager, Brown-Strauss Steel likes the ease of use, “I have pulled several anscersX Reports so far and have been pretty happy with the results. We will continue to order anscersX Reports.”

“CMA Members tell us that maintaining multiple contracts with providers can be time consuming and expensive. We needed to make access to information easier and less expensive by offering a one-click combined report,” shares Michael Mitchell. “anscersX Combined Business Credit Report attempts to solve that issue.”

Terrence A. McCraw, CCE, Greenheart Farms, Inc. reports, “Glad I found the new anscersX Credit Report!  It’s a quick way to pull together independent credit data from multiple data sources. All in a single search. It’s priced right too!”

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About Credit Management AssociationTM : Credit Management Association (CMA) is a non-profit association that has served business to-business companies since 1883. CMA helps credit, collection, and financial decision-makers get the information and support they need to make fast, accurate credit decisions. In addition, CMA assists insolvent companies with workouts or liquidation through cost effective alternatives to bankruptcy.
Contact: Michael Mitchell – mmitchell@emailcma.org – 818-972-5340 CreditManagementAssociation.org
anscers.com

About Trade Information ExchangeTM:Trade Information Exchange (TIE) provides trade credit report products and services for the manufacturing, distributing, and construction industries. With TIE, the promise is faster, less expensive, more accurate, industry-specific credit information on companies. We have years of industry-specific experience and a small-company attitude toward customer service. 
Contact: Robert Shultz  – bob@tradeinformationexchange.com – 805-520-7880
www.tradeinformationexchange.com

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Accounts Sent To Collection Agencies Set New Record

The Commercial Collection Agency Association (CCAA) reported that its members received a record volume of business-to-business accounts for collection in 2009.

Emil Hartleb, Executive Director of CCAA reported that in 2009 CCAA members received $17, 762,139,514 in accounts placed for collection.

This represents an increase of 33.4 percent over 2008.  Account placement in 2008 held the previous record, $13,311,932,553.

Hartleb pointed out that the gain in placement for the Fourth Quarter of 2009 compared to the same quarter in 2008 was particularly strong registering a gain of over 48 percent. He indicated that the problems in the economy’s business sector are not behind us yet, particularly for small and medium sized businesses.

In addition to reporting their account placement statistics, members are surveyed quarterly on their outlook for account placement and the collectability of that placement.  Hartleb stated that in the survey conducted for the Fourth Quarter of 2009, 70 percent of CCAA’s membership believed that a lackluster economy, marked by high levels of account placement and declining collectability, will continue for at least the next six months.  This is an increase of approximately 27 percent from the Third Quarter Survey where 55 percent of the CCAA membership believed that account placement would continue to rise and collectability decline.

The Commercial Collection Agency Association (CCAA) reported that its members received a record volume of business-to-business accounts for collection in 2009.Emil Hartleb, Executive Director of CCAA reported that in 2009 CCAA members received $17, 762,139,514 in accounts placed for collection.This represents an increase of 33.4 percent over 2008.  Account placement in 2008 held the previous record, $13,311,932,553.Hartleb pointed out that the gain in placement for the Fourth Quarter of 2009 compared to the same quarter in 2008 was particularly strong registering a gain of over 48 percent.He indicated that the problems in the economy’s business sector are not behind us yet, particularly for small and medium sized businesses.In addition to reporting their account placement statistics, members are surveyed quarterly on their outlook for account placement and the collectability of that placement.  Hartleb stated that in the survey conducted for the Fourth Quarter of 2009, 70 percent of CCAA’s membership believed that a lackluster economy, marked by high levels of account placement and declining collectability, will continue for at least the next six months.  This is an increase of approximately 27 percent from the Third Quarter Survey where 55 percent of the CCAA membership believed that account placement would continue to rise and collectability decline.

CMA Survey Quoted in LABJ Article

“Just last week, the Credit Management Association of Burbank released its third quarter survey of 800
credit managers across the western United States, and 64 percent said their collections of trade credit
remain no better than fair. Worse, 74 percent see no change in the near future.”

From LABJ article:

Small Businesses Need Party Favors

By CHARLES CRUMPLEY 11/9/2009

Download full article: labj_110909

Nine Critical Steps To Anticipate & Plan For Economic Stress

Press Release: CMA Offers Tips, Tactics For Hard Times
Burbank, CA – As more and more businesses confront the devastating impact of the recession, executives can take immediate and specific steps to reduce the damage and stave off the worst outcome of all, bankruptcy.

“Pain is inevitable in this economy,” according to Mike Mitchell, President of the Credit Management Association, “but in many cases the most dire consequences of that pain can be anticipated and even avoided. Businesses which plan for and stay several steps ahead of the curve are far more likely to come out of the recession healthier. The benefits of taking action early will serve the business, its employees, its customers and the economy.”
Mr. Mitchell and Mike Joncich, who heads the CMA’s division dealing with bankruptcy and liquidation, agree that nine basic steps must be taken as early as possible.
  1. Recognize the widespread impact of the recession – you are not alone. Too many executives react to bad times by blaming themselves. They try to hide from the problem or avoid hard decisions. It is far better to recognize that the down economy is hurting everyone and face up to the facts early.
  2. It will probably get worse before it gets better. Even though most experts agree that the recession has not yet hit bottom, business leaders tend to rely on hope rather than planning for even more difficult times.
  3. Do not procrastinate. Even in the face of overwhelming problems, solutions exist. Those solutions will not appear out of thin air – they will emerge from
    good planning and long-term thinking.
  4. Keep communications wide open. It is absolutely essential to communicatedirectly, honestly and frequently with customers, creditors, employees and bankers. Each of those groups will welcome honest communication and all of them are too likely to rely on guesses or bad information if executives don’t provide them with an accurate picture.
  5. Talk to your bank about restructuring loans. This will ease the pressure and it will also put you in position to take advantage when the tight credit market eases.
  6. Work with your employees. By getting a commitment for more work or a short-term reduction in compensation, you can insure continued employment, increase production and build loyalty and dedication in your workforce.
  7. Negotiate with vendors. You can extend payments or modify existing terms to insure that your vendors get paid something and become partners in your success.
  8. Get maximum return on Accounts Receivable. You may be able to tighten your terms, eliminate discounts or strengthen your collection systems to improve your cash flow.
  9. Seek equity partnerships. When you’re doing all you can to maintain and strengthen your business, you become a sound investment. If you’ve taken smart steps to anticipate economic danger, your business is a far more attractive prospect for investment.
“Taking these steps now is by far the best course available to most business leaders,” says Mr. Joncich. “Hiding from the problem or waiting until the last minute is the worst choice. Delay is the enemy, action is the ally.”
CMA, the nation’s largest regional professional credit association, delivers a variety of business credit services to large and small companies across the full spectrum of commercial enterprise. CMA members receive education, support services and critical information to meet professional standards and accreditation. In addition, the Association also assists insolvent companies with workouts or liquidation through cost-effective alternatives to bankruptcy. CMA has provided business credit services and support in the western U.S. since 1883.