Senior managers from 14 provider organisations met recently to discuss survival strategies and plans for future growth and development. Chaired by PAUL BIRLEY, head of healthcare at Barclays Commercial Bank, the discussion has formed the basis for a series of three articles in Caring Times. This third article in the series focuses on how care businesses can improve their cash management.
Having examined management and profitability issues, time ran out aboard the Belfast before the discussion could turn to the third topic of cash management. Several of those present, however, subsequently sent-in their contributions to this third article in the series.
Geoff Lane, group finance director of the Ansel Group/ILG, said that, because the principal source of cash into a business was from customers, an organisation must have very good billing and revenue collection processes.
‘Any errors or delays in the billing will only result in delayed or part payments so accuracy and timeliness of invoicing is paramount,’ he said.
‘Linked to this must be good collection processes. Chasing people for money in a care environment is sometimes uncomfortable for people but it is much better to identify and address an issue early on rather than allow a debt to build up. Linked to this must be a deep understanding at all levels of management of payroll costs which is the largest cost item in