Magazine article Business Credit

Get the Facts about Industry Credit Groups: The National Association of Credit Management Saves Companies from Costly Fiction

Magazine article Business Credit

Get the Facts about Industry Credit Groups: The National Association of Credit Management Saves Companies from Costly Fiction

Article excerpt

Every day of the week, credit managers make tough decisions about the creditworthiness of potential customers. Because businesses risk billions of dollars annually by extending credit, it's imperative that these decisions are made wisely. For over one hundred years, the National Association of Credit Management (NACM) has prided itself on giving credit managers the information they need to make these tough decisions in a timely manner.

According to NACM, "credit managers must be able to gauge the difference between fact and fraud, between hope and charity, and between faith and foolishness." One of the important resources in the Association's arsenal of information, designed to help credit managers distinguish payment history fact from a financially risky fairy tale, is the industry credit group. These groups, which are made up of members from the same field, meet regularly for roundtable discussions to exchange information--and dispel misinformation--about the credit history of their customers.

Fact: Membership Has Its Privileges

Industry credit groups meet monthly, bimonthly, or quarterly--and are effective because "they minimize fraud and greatly enhance the ability to respond to viable customers," says Don Mosher, President, NACM Business Credit Resources, Minneapolis. Mosher, former credit manager of a Fortune 500 food manufacturer, also notes that the connections members of an industry can make during roundtable discussions is an invaluable benefit. "These groups frequently have a big spectrum of expertise that everyone will call upon as they face unknown or uncertain issues." Chuck Monson, CCE, President, NACM Inland Northwest, agrees that the networking opportunities made available from industry credit groups is advantageous. Monson praises the Association's roundtable groups for giving members of an industry the ability to get to know others in the same line of work, while allowing them to build up trust in the information they are receiving about the payment history of a customer.

The trust fostered in industry credit groups results in reliable data that can protect a credit manager from making a costly mistake. "The decisions made in the credit departments can directly affect a company's finances and cash flow," says Natalie Wriston, Manager of Groups Services for NACM Chicago Midwest, who is responsible for the Affiliate's 40 industry credit groups. …

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