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Increase Cash Flow

3 Quick Ways to Increase Cash Flow

Cash is king. You know this as well as anyone else. Without cash, you can find yourself in some pretty uncomfortable situations, like not having enough money for payroll, or making late payments to vendors and bill collectors.

So what can you do to manage your cash flow effectively? Let’s take a look at three quick and easy ways to increase your cash flow—and help you sleep at night.

1. Sell or lease unused assets

You paid good money for your assets and, even if you’re no longer using some of them, it’s time to put that investment to work again. Take an inventory of the assets you’re not currently using and consider selling or leasing them.

How do you shed the assets? Use your industry contacts, such as suppliers, to find buyers or lessees. Also search for websites that specialize in auctions for your industry. For assets with significant value, contact a business broker.

2. Deposit additional cash into interest-earning accounts

This one’s a bit of a no-brainer. Let the banks work for you for a change. Deposit any cash you won’t need for a while into an interest-bearing account so it can grow. Look for an insured account with the highest interest your financial institution offers and let your money sit there.

Here’s a tip: If you’re concerned about locking your funds away in a long-term account like a certificate of deposit, consider a money market account instead. Money market accounts offer greater interest than regular savings accounts, while still giving you access to your funds. After all, cash flow is what you’re after—not more restrictions.

3. Factor your receivables

Invoice factoring is perhaps one of the smartest cash flow solutions out there. In fact, this is how many other small to mid-size businesses manage cash flow effectively.

You may be asking yourself: How does invoice factoring work? Here’s how. Simply send your invoices to a factoring company like Triumph Business Capital and we’ll fund the money straight to your bank account—usually within 24 hours.

Keep in mind that we verify the creditworthiness of your customer. If the customer has a history of missed or late payments, the invoice may not be approved for the financing.

Get paid today

We believe that getting paid shouldn’t be the hardest part of your job.

When you factor your invoices with Triumph, you’ll also gain access to a host of back office solutions. Solutions like free credit checks to make sure your clients have the ability to pay; and collection services to get your money from those who won’t pay.

Ready to get started? Factor your invoices with Triumph Business Capital and get paid today.

 

Invoice Factoring

Debt Collection vs. Invoice Factoring: What’s The Difference?

It’s not only been days, but weeks—or even months—since you performed work for your client, and you still haven’t received payment. Sound familiar?

As a professional, you need to be paid on time. You’ve got people to support and bills to pay. You may be considering using a debt collector to secure payment from your customer. Or, you may have considered proactively factoring your invoices with a trusted, credible factor. But which one is the smarter option. Are there any hidden implications you should be considering before making your decision?

The answer is yes. There’s actually a huge chasm between debt collection and invoice factoring. Think through these three key differences before reaching out to either one.

1. Purpose

The primary purpose behind using a debt collector is very different from the reason you’d use an invoice factor. While invoice factoring involves current unpaid invoices—no more than 30 days old—debt collection deals with invoices that are at least 60 days past due.

Debt collection

If you’re still trying to get paid months after you’ve completed the work, it might be time to check in with a debt collection agency.

Invoice factoring

If you prefer timely payment for your work instead of relegating your receivables to the bad debt file, you’ll want to connect with a reputable invoice factor like Triumph Business Capital.

One of the benefits of working with an established and reputable factor like Triumph is that we’ll not only factor your invoices; we’ll also provide a host of back office solutions—including debt collection—to ensure that you get paid on time for the work you perform. Welcome to the best of both worlds.

2. Funding timeline

How much longer are you willing to wait to be paid? The difference between how long it takes a debt collector to get funds to you and how quickly an invoice factor sends you funds can be a game changer.

Debt collection

You’ll be paid, but only after the collection agency receives payment from your customer. That can take time—if it happens at all. Add an aggressive process that can alienate customers, and you may decide that engaging a debt collection agency just isn’t worth it.

Invoice factoring

With factoring, you simply sell your invoices at a small discount and get immediate cash for your business. How fast? You get paid before the factor receives any money from your customer—usually within 24 hours.

3. Fees

How much are you willing to pay to be paid? In an ideal world, the payment conflict wouldn’t exist. But in today’s environment, unfortunately, you often end up either arm wrestling your customers or throwing up your hands—a sure sign of giving up altogether.

Debt collection

When you hire a debt collector, you’ll likely pay a hefty 25% to 30% collection fee—which still beats giving up 100% of an unpaid invoice! But there’s an even better option.

Invoice factoring

Getting paid shouldn’t be the hardest part of your job. Invoice factoring isn’t free, but weigh its small price against its great advantages: you’ll receive an immediate payment from the factor—usually 70% to 100% of the invoice—followed by any remaining balance (minus a fee) as soon as the factor collects full payment from your customer.

Get paid today

Factor your invoices with Triumph Business Capital to get paid today.

When you factor your invoices with our team, you’ll also get access to a host of back office services like credit checks to make sure your clients can pay, and collection services to get your money from those who won’t.

Ready to get started? Factor your invoices with Triumph Business Capital today.

Invoice Factoring Service

Get Paid On Time While Maintaining Business Relationships

Let’s face it, money can get in the way of any relationship, whether business or personal. And small or mid-size business owners like you never want to compromise relationships with customers or vendors.

But without the funds to pay your bills on time, how can you avoid damaging your relationship with your vendors? And how can you demand timely payment of your invoices without jeopardizing your relationship with your customers? What’s a small to mid-size business owner to do?

Managing cash flow takes diplomacy—and these three industry secrets.

1. Set up mutually beneficial payment terms

If, for example, a customer refuses to pay an initial deposit, but wants you to work on a large project that won’t be completed for months, you can negotiate progress payments. As you reach the agreed-upon benchmarks, you’ll receive partial payments, at least enough to cover your overhead and project costs. This will keep your contractors and vendors happy.

Your customer will benefit, too, by making smaller periodic payments instead of paying a huge lump sum upon completion, or even a hefty deposit with a large final payment.  

2. Pay your bills on time

Another key point is to pay your bills on time—always. Set up automatic payments so you never miss a bill payment. Timely payments go a long way toward improving your credit and your credibility. Vendors and contractors appreciate on-time payments and may even give your account preference over other businesses.

On the other hand, late payments can be a black mark against your business—vendors may not be as willing to work with you, and may stop extending credit or services.

3. Offer discounts for quick payment

Everyone likes to save money! Offer a discount off the top of your invoices if your customers pay within a specified period instead of waiting 30, 60, or 90 days to submit payment. Many will jump at this chance, and your offer will generate good will with them. It’s a win-win for everyone.

Get paid, today

Still struggling to get paid by your customers so you can pay your vendors? Invoice factoring can be an easy and effective way to manage cash flow while maintaining—and even improving—business relationships.

Simply send your invoices to a reputable factor like Triumph Business Capital so you can get paid today. When you factor your invoices with Triumph, you’ll get 70% to 100% of your funds upfront. And as we collect full payment from your customers, we’ll then pay you the remaining balance on your invoices, minus a small fee. In the end, you’ll get the cash you need to pay vendors and creditors quickly.

Since 2004, Triumph Business Capital has helped thousands of small and mid-size businesses manage their cash flow effectively. When you factor your invoices with our team, you’ll also get access to a host of back office services like credit checks and collections: We’ll make sure your customers can pay you, and we’ll get your money from those who won’t.

Ready to get started? Factor your invoices with Triumph Business Capital today.

About Invoice Factoring

Cash Flow Gaps? Boost Your Bottom Line with Invoice Factoring

You’re running a small or mid-size business and that takes money—lots of it. But coming up with the capital you need, when you need it, can often pose significant challenges—like how to meet payroll, pay vendors, upgrade equipment . . . the list goes on and on.

So how do you manage cash flow effectively? Let’s explore some common business cash flow problems and what you can do to turn those problems into productivity and profit.

4 common small business cash flow problems

1. Meeting payroll demands

As a small business owner, you know that payroll can take a large chunk of your budget each and every month, if not every week. At best, many small business owners lose sleep over payroll; at worst, some lose their business entirely.

Bankruptcies in the U.S. increased to 25,227 companies in the second quarter of 2016, from 24,797 companies in the first quarter of 2016. That’s a staggering number of businesses that closed shop in just this year alone.

Perhaps you can still keep your doors open, but just by a crack. You’re struggling every payday to meet the financial demand. You’re bound by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)—laws that set the minimum wage and establish guidelines regarding overtime—as well as state payday laws outlining when employees must be paid. No matter how much you want to treat your employees fairly, if you can’t meet those requirements, you could be in for it.

An employee who has a payroll grievance, whether about regular pay, overtime, or vacation pay, can submit a complaint against your company to the appropriate state or federal agency.

The result? An investigation by the agency, which may, in turn, lead to financial penalties, the loss of your business license, or a lawsuit against your company. Your business could be liable for back pay, fines, or other financial judgments—not to mention the collateral costs and work disruption associated with such investigations.

2. Maintaining a flawless credit score

Since your credit score plays a key role in the viability of your business, it’s important to keep a watchful eye on this number. At the very least, get a free credit report each year and make sure the information is both correct and current. You can request removal of any negative information after seven years, but don’t forget that you’ll have to wait up to 10 years for a bankruptcy to drop off your report.

If your credit score is less than a perfect, get back on track with these simple steps.

  • Pay your bills on time—always. Arrange automatic payments on every debt so you never miss a payment. Timely payments determine up to 35% of your score.
  • Keep open all accounts that are in good standing. These older accounts positively influence your length of credit history—about 15% of your score.
  • Apply for a credit card—but read the fine print for interest and fee information. Most importantly, only use the card for small charges you can afford to pay back every month.
  • Keep a low debt load—carrying more than 25% of your limit will increase your debt-to-income ratio and damage your score. Pay the bill on time and in full each month.
  • Don’t apply for more credit accounts than you need. If you must open new lines of credit, don’t try to open them all at once. Prospective lenders will check your credit, which lowers your score, and these pings stay on your record for two years, accounting for 10% of your score.
  • If you have a dispute about a debt, be proactive to communicate with the lender.  If all else fails, take the issue to small claims court before the debt gets into collections. Avoid lawsuits and judgments, too.
  • Review your credit report often, disputing incorrect information. You can get one free report each year, but monitoring its accuracy more often may be worth the cost as you’re rebuilding your credit.

3. Surviving slow-paying customers

You know the drill—you deliver your end of the bargain; you invoice; and then you wait . . . and wait . . . and wait to be paid. All the while, you have overhead costs to cover, vendors clamoring for their money, and employees who need to be paid on time.

Maybe your payment terms are net 15, but your customers insist on their terms—net 30, 60, or even 120. You don’t want to lose their business so you reluctantly agree. Fair? Not at all. And, as you well know, waiting to get paid can have serious financial consequences, like not having enough money to run your day-to-day operations, much less expand your business.

You could, of course, apply for a line of credit or get a loan to help carry you through the month, but will you get approved? And with the piles of paperwork and myriad backup documents required—not to mention the back and forth with the bank—you could be practically out of business before the bank makes a decision, much less actually gives you the funds your business needs. And let’s face it: you simply cannot afford to wait all that time only to be turned down.

4. Avoiding unnecessary debt

“Debt” is a nasty four-letter word to a small or mid-size business. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), roughly 50 percent of small businesses fail within their first five years, mostly because of insufficient capital, poor credit arrangements, and—you guessed it—too much debt.

Unfortunately, debt can be accumulated rather quickly when trying to boost cash flow or finance growth. Perhaps a business loan could help, but loans must be repaid—and with interest, which can add up significantly.

Fact is, unnecessary or additional debt can be the first step on the slippery slope toward Chapter 11 bankruptcy or even “Closed!”

Fortunately, you can utilize financing solutions other than bank loans—options such as invoice factoring—that won’t incur that four-letter “D” word or burden your business with additional cash flow hardship.

How to overcome cash flow gaps

With potential hazards lurking around every financial corner, how can a small or mid-sized business overcome cash flow gaps and boost its bottom line in this economy—or any economy?

Alternative lending

You could opt for cash flow solutions like alternative lending, but that can prove costly. If your loan is a payday loan, your payment will be withdrawn from your checking account every single day. If the money isn’t in your checking account, you’ll accrue additional fees, increasing the payoff amount and delaying the payoff date—damaging your bottom line by keeping your business in debt and paying exorbitant interest longer than expected.

Merchant cash advance

You could also consider a Merchant Cash Advance, which charges you based on your projected sales. But this, too, can be costly—and risky. If your future sales don’t meet your projections, you could end up repaying more than you actually sell, and at a high interest rate. While invoice factoring offers a genuine cash flow solution by purchasing your existing invoices, a merchant cash advance can actually add to your stress.

Invoice factoring

Invoice factoring answers each of these financial challenges. Here’s how it works.

You simply sell your invoices, minus a small discount, to a factoring company like Triumph Business Capital. After checking out the creditworthiness of your invoiced customer, the factor advances 70% to 100% of the invoice amount to you as immediate cash for your business.

In a recourse factoring agreement, you’re likely to see 100% advanced, while a transportation company with a non-recourse factoring agreement would likely see a 90% to 97% advanced, and a small business with a general factoring agreement would likely see 70% to 95% advanced. And when you customer pays the invoice, the factor remits the balance, minus a fee, to your business.

So instead of waiting 30 to 120 days—or even longer—to receive your customer’s payment, you get cash in hand within 24 to 48 hours.

Triumph offers both recourse and non-recourse invoice factoring for approved clients. With non-recourse factoring, you’re not liable if your customer doesn’t pay your invoice for credit reasons. Since the factor assumes all risk with non-recourse invoice factoring, your business reduces bad debt while increasing cash flow, even if your customer never pays the invoice.

Here’s why invoice factoring might be right for your business.

Get more cash for immediate needs

Invoice factoring helps relieve payroll pain, giving you ready cash to meet weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly payroll. Need to stock up on supplies? No more waiting for your customers’ payments so you can purchase supplies or pay vendors. How about the rent or mortgage payment? Invoice factoring can take the stress out of meeting all your first-of-the-month commitments.

Get more cash for growth opportunities

With invoice factoring, you can expand operations, hire more staff, or develop a new product line. Your customers’ unpaid invoices no longer hold your business hostage, stifling your progress. And unlike a conventional loan, there’s no limit to the amount of financing with Triumph. The cash you receive for your invoices is unrestricted—you don’t need Triumph’s approval to use it for whatever your business needs.

Get more cash without more debt

Sure, bank loans or lines of credit could shore up your finances. But would your business be approved? How long would that take? And at what cost? Invoice factoring gives your business the cash you need quickly and easily. It doesn’t show up on your balance sheet as debt and your business won’t have to make onerous interest payments. Invoice factoring doesn’t negatively impact your credit score either.

Let Triumph help you boost your bottom line today

We believe that getting paid shouldn’t be the hardest part about your job. Since 2004, Triumph Business Capital has helped over 7,000 small and mid-size businesses in the U.S. manage their cash flow.

As your partner, we’ll factor your invoices so you can get paid today—and make your financial challenges a thing of the past. And in addition to helping you manage cash flow through invoice factoring, we offer a host of other business services through our parent company Triumph Bancorp to help you do what you do best.

Asset-based lending

Does your business need $1 million or more? Triumph Commercial Finance Business Capital offers asset-based lending (ABL) solutions for small and mid-size businesses. As your company steps up to this next level, Triumph Commercial Finance may be your best option for continued growth.

Defined as a loan or line of credit secured by balance-sheet assets (“collateral”) such as accounts receivable, inventory, etc., ABL typically costs less than invoice factoring. However, its loan underwriting process also has more requirements, including CPA-reviewed or -audited financial statements that reflect favorable earnings and tangible net worth. Additionally, ABL can be more restrictive than invoice factoring.

Equipment financing

Triumph Commercial Finance also specializes in equipment financing for the construction, refuse, and transportation industries—so you can upgrade your operations to grow your business or expand your footprint. Loans for purchasing new or used equipment range from $250,000 to $6 million, and loan terms are typically two to five years.

Back office solutions

Invoice factoring at Triumph Business Capital includes a slew of helpful back office solutions like free credit checks, collection services, data storage, and more. It’s our goal to help you reduce overhead costs and simplify your operations.

Take the guesswork out of taking on new clients. Triumph Business Capital offers free credit checks to help you make informed decisions before signing a new contract. And our online portal gives our trucking clients access to freight broker credits that we monitor daily.

After you’ve provided the contracted goods or services, our Account Resolution team will ensure that you receive timely payment. What’s more, Triumph Business Capital provides account management reports online—conveniently available to review at any time—so you can make smart business decisions based on your actual data (ageing reports, collection reports, etc.).

Insurance services

Need insurance at competitive rates? Triumph Insurance Group Business Capital offers a wide range of insurance options for the transportation industry, as well as damage protection for new and used equipment. Get the property and casualty insurance coverage that’s right for you—and at the best price, with affordable payment options.

 


Let’s get you paid today

Triumph Business Capital is committed to helping small and mid-size businesses manage cash flow and so much more. End late payment worries and slow cash flow problems. Factor your invoices and get paid today with Triumph Business Capital.

Small Business Factoring

How Much Does Invoice Factoring Cost?

Don’t you love that feeling—you know, the one you get when an invoice pays? With invoice factoring, you don’t even have to think about processing invoices, and you can forget about having to wait 30, 60, or 90 days to receive your client’s payment. You can actually get paid today. When calculating the cost of invoice factoring, it’s important to remember the benefits it can provide to small businesses and to always consider your own business situation and goals. 

The many benefits of invoice factoring

No more invoices to process, no waiting for clients to pay, and immediate cash in hand—invoice factoring services simplifies your bookkeeping experience and helps you get paid on time every time.

According to the Wall Street Journal, “The factor advances most of the invoice amount—usually 70% to 90%—after checking out the credit-worthiness of the billed customer. When the bill is paid, the factor remits the balance, minus a transaction (or factoring) fee.”

The benefits of invoice factoring are many, but how much does it actually cost? In this article, we’ll explain everything you always wanted to know about invoice factoring (but were afraid to ask).

Non-recourse factoring vs. recourse factoring

With non-recourse factoring, the factor assumes all the risk of collecting the debt. That’s a lower-risk option for small companies that can’t absorb the cost of unpaid invoices, but it does cost slightly more than recourse factoring.

Larger corporations often favor recourse factoring because, if a customer fails to pay, they can afford to return the funds they received from selling the uncollectible invoice to the factoring company.

Aside from the cost differential between the two, there are times when the cost differential is not justified by the credit risk being taken.

For example, if you’re selling to WalMart or the Federal Government, the chances of either one not paying because of credit reasons are quite small. Thus, paying a premium for non-recourse starts to look a little less attractive. If you do elect for non-recourse factoring, pay special attention to the Security Agreement that you’ll be required to sign and make sure you ask the factor to specifically go over when you will be covered and when you will not be covered from credit risk.

Whether you opt for a non-recourse or recourse factoring agreement, if your customer pays the invoice in 45 days or less, your total factoring cost with Triumph Business Capital would average approximately 3.9% of the invoice. However, different factoring companies determine what fees they’ll include, and these fees can drive up the cost of their services.

So how much does invoice factoring cost? 

Fees vary from factor to factor, so check with your factor before getting started.

Application/Due Diligence Fee

Some factors charge this fee some do not. Those that do not may recover this upfront expense by increasing the initial financing fees. This fee varies highly from factor to factor and can cost anywhere from zero to thousands of dollars.

Closing Fee

The factor retains a percentage of each invoice, typically 1–3%.

Monthly and Termination Fees

Some factors may require that you sell a certain amount of your invoice each month and sign a long-term contract. If the monthly target isn’t met, a minimum monthly fee will be charged. Terminating the contract early can trigger a cancellation fee—typically a percentage of your line of credit.

Discount Fee

The cost of paying for your invoices in advance can vary anywhere from 1.5–5% of the invoice value each month. This wide disparity is yet another reason to check with your factor before jumping into a relationship.

Factoring Fee

If your invoices go beyond the 30–45 days covered by the advance discount fee, you can expect an additional charge of 2–3% or more for every 30 days that the receivable is outstanding beyond the original 30 days. Some factors may prorate the fee daily, while others may charge on a 10-day basis.

Triumph’s Factoring Fee depends on your unique factoring agreement. Our factoring experts considering whether you’ve chosen recourse or non-recourse factoring, the credit quality of your customers, and more. But in general, let’s say you decided to factor a maximum of $3,000 with a 95% advance rate over a 90-day repurchase period. Meaning, you’d get paid $2,850 within 24 hours of signing your factoring agreement, and the final 5%—minus standard factoring fees—after 90 days. In this scenario, you’re likely to see an initial 0.40% factoring fee totaling $12.

While the scenario we just presented is common, it’s important to remember that your factoring fee will vary depending on the terms of your factoring agreement.

How does Triumph Business Capital compare to other factoring companies?

Now that we’ve broken down the fees, let’s get into specifics. While not all factors are entirely transparent with their pricing, we’re an open book. The last thing we want to do is surprise you with a fee. Here’s how our pricing structure compares to other popular factors you may have heard of.

Other companies charge flat advance rates of 10–15% and $15 per wire, but offers free ACH transactions. Some don’t include a setup fee, but they charge a fee based on the advanced amount.

Triumph Business Capital, on the other hand, works with your business to fit your budget and requirements. Triumph takes into consideration the credit risk associated with your customers, the time it takes them to pay their invoices, and the monthly funding volume we forecast for your business.

Can invoice factoring save you money?

Consider this simple illustration. You decide that invoice factoring is the best option for your business, so you convert your invoices into cash instead of waiting a month or more to get paid.

With immediate cash in hand, you can stop worrying about how you’re going to pay your bills and get on with the growing your business. And when you pay vendors more quickly, you can take advantage of their discount offers, which saves you money. You’ve not only gotten invoice collection off your plate, you’ve paid your bills and saved money in the process—and that’s good business.

Calculate The Cost To You...

Let's take a look. Pricing for both options will vary considerably based on business size and other criteria - so feel free to enter the information most appropriate to you.

Cash Advance Loan
$97,000
125
$1,000
$125,000
109%
Invoice Factoring
$114,000
21%
Your Effective Annual Interest Rate
Cash Advance Loans
109%
Invoice Factoring
21%

Cash Available For Operations
DISCLAIMER

The above calculations incorporate estimated values and are intended for comparative illustration purposes only. Terms and conditions of specific cash advance loan and/or factoring agreements may result in additional margin of error. If, for any reason, you suspect the results are not representative - please contact us directly so that we may address those concerns. Alternatively, the most accurate way to calculate the Annual Percentage Rate for a loan or competitive factoring facility may be to contact the financial service provider directly and request that they perform or confirm the calculations. Thank you.

Get paid today

The hardest part about your job shouldn’t be getting paid. Let Triumph Business Capital help you factor your invoices and get paid today.

 

Let’s Talk About How to Get You Paid

Take five minutes to learn more about how we help owner/operators increasing their cash flow.

Invoice Factoring Companies

Invoice Factoring vs. Traditional Bank Loan: What’s The Difference?

Invoice factoring and a bank loan have very little in common—other than the fact that both provide cash to small businesses. Here’s a simple factoring vs. bank loan comparison to help you decide which can work for your business.

Invoice factoring

With invoice factoring, you simply convert your invoices into immediate cash to cover operating costs without taking on debt. You sell your invoices at a small discount to a factoring company like Triumph Business Capital and get immediate cash for your business.

Worried about your credit? No problem! Invoice factoring is primarily based on the quality of your customers’ credit, not your own credit or business history. While most banking institutions look at the same documentation we do, our focus primarily on the quality of your customers. Don’t let the successes and failures of your business journey stop you from getting paid.

Plus, invoice factoring works fast. You’ll typically receive approval in about 24 hours. Better yet, there’s no debt to repay, and you have unlimited funding potential.

As long as you have invoices, you have the opportunity to convert them into cash. Even startups are eligible for factoring.

Traditional bank loan

Compare that to a bank loan. You pay principal and interest over time, and the funding potential is capped by the bank. After completing all necessary paperwork, the approval process can take months—and it’s based on your company’s operational and credit history. If you’re a startup, chances are you won’t be approved for bank funding.

Additionally, bank loans and lines of credit often carry what’s called a loan covenant. Essentially they’re conditions in a commercial loan that require you to fulfill certain financial performance requirements. If you don’t meet the covenant requirements, you can default on your loan or line of credit. If your bank representative is nice, they may waive the default and charge an additional waiver fee. In the end, it’ll likely cost you more than you bargained for.

 

Bank loans or lines of credit also come with restrictions that forbid you from taking certain actions like purchasing or selling assets for your business, incurring additional debt for any reason, and more. Because of restrictions, you’ll often find yourself with the financial resources you need without the freedom to use them to solve your biggest business problems.

 

While a “line of credit” implies that you’ll be financed for whatever you need up to a certain amount, more often than not, that’s not actually what happens. Your credit line often comes with so many restrictions that it’s often easier to look for the next best option.

 

Which is best for your business?

If you own a business that has a long history of favorable cash flow and profits, or is well-capitalized, then a bank line of credit might be the right choice. But if you’re a new business—or one that may have had a significant hiccup somewhere along the road—then there’s no comparison.

Invoice factoring gives you immediate cash flow without creating debt on your balance sheet, and it’s virtually an unlimited source of working capital.

While banks require a wide range of collateral and financial statements, often refusing businesses that need additional funding but can’t meet the stringent borrowing requirements to qualify for a new bank loan.

Why Triumph Business Capital?

When considering factoring, it’s important to work with a reputable factor with a strong track record. Triumph Business Capital has provided factoring for over 7,000 small to mid-sized businesses since 2004. We have a long history with the transportation industry—and staffing agencies, government contractors, and small businesses are increasingly seeking us out to help solve their cash flow challenges. Triumph also offers smart Asset Based Lending and Equipment Financing options as well as a discount fuel card program.

Triumph is a proud member of the International Factoring Association (IFA) and strictly adheres to the IFA’s code of ethics. Originally called Advance Business Capital, the company joined Triumph Bancorp Group in 2012. As a financial holding company, Triumph Bancorp, Inc. maintains a diversified line of community banking, commercial finance, and asset management activities. Since day one, our vision has been centered on four core business priorities—delivering value, developing people, demonstrating expertise, and displaying a commitment to enterprise success.

Factor your invoices today

Ready to get started? Let Triumph Business Capital help you factor your invoices—and get you the cash you need when you need it.

Accounts Receivable Financing

4 Funding Options for Your Small Business in 2018

What are some of the popular types of short-term funding available to small businesses? How can you fund your business? You’ve got questions; we’ve got answers!

 

1. Bootstrapping

Bootstrapping is a funny word for a smart financial concept. The term comes from the phrase “pulling oneself up by one’s bootstraps.” An individual is said to be bootstrapping when he attempts to found and build a company from personal finances or from the operating revenues of the new company. According to Investopedia, more than 80% of new startup operations receive their funding from the founder’s personal finances.

 

So where exactly does the bootstrapper get startup funds? A bootstrapper may pull from a savings account, use zero interest credit cards, or leverage personal assets like selling a house or car and cashing in on a 401(k). With bootstrapping, the business is your own—no answering to investors like venture capitalists.

What are the benefits and drawbacks of bootstrapping?

Business owners who utilize bootstrap funding don’t have to worry about diluting ownership between investors. They don’t need to issue equity, and they can focus debt on personal sources. The downside? Unnecessary financial risk is all on the entrepreneur. And bootstrapping may not provide enough investment for the company to become successful at a reasonable rate.

What other companies have used bootstrapping?

If you decide to bootstrap, however, you’ll be in good company. Dell Computers, FaceBook, Apple, The Clorox Company, and The Coca-Cola Company each catapulted to greatness from humble beginnings as a bootstrapped enterprise. To learn more about bootstrapping, Fast Company offers 10 tips for bootstrapping your startup.

 

2. Friends and family

Of course, you can always tap into friends and family. With business plan in hand, pitch your idea to those closest to you, explaining what you’re selling, what you plan to charge, and how they’ll make money by backing your business.

What are the benefits and drawbacks of tapping into this method?

Be upfront about the risks and put the rules behind the investment in writing. Whether you’re asking for a loan, an investment, or even a gift, remember that each one comes with strings attached.  In the case of loans and investments, you will have to pay the money back: you cannot file bankruptcy if the business fails.

 

Entrepreneur.com offers tips and tactics in Five Tips for Asking Friends and Family for Funding.

 

3. Loan or Line of Credit

You can also apply for a loan or line of credit. What’s the difference? A loan is a specific amount disbursed to you at once in a lump sum. It has a fixed or variable interest rate, and a fixed repayment term. On the other hand, a line of credit functions much like a credit card. You’re given a maximum amount that you can use over a period of time, and you can borrow against that amount as you need money.

What are the benefits and drawbacks?

Once you’re approved for a line of credit, you can tap into it at any time to access the amount your business needs. You can also use a line of credit as an alternate overdraft protection option on a checking account. Keep in mind, though, that excessive borrowing against a line of credit could get you into financial trouble as surely as continuing to rack up credit card debt.

 

Want to know more about the benefits and drawbacks of traditional bank loans? We just wrote an article to compare and contrast traditional bank loans and invoice factoring. Read the full article here.

 

4. Invoice Factoring

Invoice factoring can be a small business owner’s best friend. It’s been around for over 4,000 years, dating back to the time of King Hammurabi of Mesopotamia. In the 1900s, the most popular industries for invoice factoring were the garment and textile industries. Today, the transportation industry, staffing agencies, government contractors, and small businesses are taking full advantage of invoice factoring. The reason? It helps relieve the stress of cash flow and slow-paying clients without adding debt.

How does invoice factoring work?

Here’s how: you sell your invoices at a small discount to a factoring company like Triumph Business Capital and get immediate cash for your business. Since 2004, Triumph Business Capital has provided factoring services for 7,000 small to mid-sized businesses throughout the U.S.—so you can be sure you’re working with a reputable company that has your best interests in mind.

Are there any drawbacks?

Invoice factoring can have higher fees than traditional financing, with fees based on sales volume and factoring agreement. But it’s a small price to pay for welcome relief and cash in hand. Learn more about the Common Risks Involved with Invoice Factoring.

 

What are the best options for short-term business funding?

Triumph Business Capital offers more than just invoice factoring. If your business has grown to the next level and you’re looking for a larger loan to pay for new equipment or provide additional working capital, Triumph offers smart Asset Based Lending and Equipment Financing options as well as a discount fuel card program.

 

Let’s Talk About Your Cash Flow

Take five minutes to learn more about how we help owner/operators increasing their cash flow.

Accounts Receivable Financing

The Ultimate List of Funding Options Every Small-Business Owner Should Know About

It’s a big world out there. We’re talking the world of funding for small- to medium-sized businesses. That’s why we’re giving you a bird’s-eye view of the available options—everything you need to know about funding your business.

Invoice Factoring

You may have heard of it; maybe you know a company or two that use it. But what exactly is invoice factoring?

 

Invoice factoring can be a welcome relief for a small business or government contractor—or any business owner tired of waiting for their invoices to be paid. You simply sell your invoices at a small discount to a factoring company and get immediate cash for your business. According to the Wall Street Journal, “Now billions of dollars in accounts receivable flow through factors each year.”

 

Should you consider invoice factoring for your small business?

Here’s what you should know about invoice factoring before diving in. Invoice factoring virtually eliminates cash flow problems. There’s no need to process invoices and wait—and wait—to get paid by your clients. No more putting plans on hold because there’s just not enough money to put them into effect. Or worrying about meeting payroll because you haven’t been paid yet. Non-recourse factoring even reduces bad debt since the factor assumes all risk if the invoice isn’t paid.

 

Got bad credit? Bank loan application already declined? No worries. Invoice factoring companies look at your credit and business history differently than a bank would. They base the majority of their decision on the quality of your customers’ credit and business history, not your own. The downside? Invoice factoring can have higher fees than traditional financing, but it can be well worth it when you consider its many advantages, including being able to sleep at night.

 

Whom should you trust?

It’s important, of course, to work with a reputable factoring company like Triumph Business Capital. Since 2004, Triumph has provided factoring for over 7,000 small to mid-sized businesses like yours—from the transportation industry to staffing agencies, government contractors, and other small businesses.

 

If your business has grown to the next level and you’re looking for a larger loan to pay for new equipment or provide additional working capital, Triumph also offers smart Asset Based Lending, Equipment Financing, and a discount fuel card program.

 

SBA Loan

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) can also help finance your business with a guaranteed loan issued through participating banks and other lenders.

 

The most popular type of SBA financing is a General Business Loan, otherwise known as a 7(a) Loan. You can use the funds to establish a new business or assist in the acquisition, operation, or expansion of an existing business. The SBA guarantees loans up to $5 million to help small business owners with major investments, like building new facilities or buying land, machinery, and equipment. The SBA also offers loans that help small business owners affected by natural disasters and other kinds of emergencies.

 

Should you consider an SBA loan for your small business?
If you don’t qualify for a traditional bank loan, the government can help—although you’ll still need to work primarily with a bank. Aside from a low annual percentage rate (APR), you’ll receive funding in less than a month. Also, you’ll have more time to repay an SBA loan. If you use the loan for working capital or daily operations, you’ll have seven years to pay it back. Buying new equipment? You’ll have up to 10 years. If you use the funds for a real estate purchase, the terms go up to 25 years. A longer loan term means a lower interest rate and lower regular payments.

 

The application process, however, can be daunting. An SBA loan requires good credit and may call for collateral—and the paperwork can be both lengthy and cumbersome. The best way to navigate the process is to work with a bank that has extensive experience with SBA loans. The advantage? Lenders offer flexible terms and low rates since the federal agency guarantees the loans.

 

Alternative Lending

You’ve probably seen advertisements for alternative lenders like Kabbage, OnDeck, Lending Club, Prosper, Street Shares, and Deal Struck. Even PayPal has become a major player in the alternative lending space.

 

Alternative lending is a saving grace for some small businesses—especially if they need cash fast, or if bad credit disqualifies them for traditional lending. Sometimes referred to as “direct lending,” alternative lending provides cash in hand within two to three days on average, with a 12- to 36-month repayment period. And there’s no restriction on how to use the money.

 

Merchant Cash Advance (MCA)

MCA is an alternative financing source that provides businesses with a lump sum of cash by purchasing a set amount of their future sales. MCA companies debit your business account on a daily basis until the loan is paid in full.

 

Sound like invoice factoring? Not quite. Merchant cash advances and invoice factoring are both alternatives to traditional financing. Each involves a simple, quick application process with minimum credit requirements, making it easier and faster for small businesses to get approval—but while merchant card advances may seem like an equal option to invoice factoring, there are several catches.

 

Primarily, if your receivables are inconsistent, you may not have enough cash in the bank everyday that a withdrawal is made. At that point, you’ll overdraft on your account and experience the fees and penalties that follow.

 

Should you consider merchant cash advance for your small business?

Merchant cash advancements typically involve more risk than invoice factoring. A merchant card advance charges you based on your projected sales, while invoice factoring companies purchase your existing invoices. Since merchant cash advance payments are solely based on a prediction, rather than an actual dollar amount, this means that if your future sales don’t meet your projections, you could end up making large payments, with a much higher interest rate—usually significantly more than invoice factoring.

 

The larger problem could be that the payments continue for a period beyond your revenue generation. This form of cash advance is typically associated with incredibly high interest rates and should be avoided if at all possible.

 

Should you consider an alternative lending source for your small business?

The process for applying for alternative lending is fast and often easy. The loan application can be completed entirely online and approved in just a few minutes. Approval rates for alternative lending are much higher (64 percent, as opposed to about 20 percent for big banks, according to Inc.), and you could have your money in a matter of days, rather than weeks or months. Typical lending ranges from $10,000 to $100,000.

 

But alternative lending can be costly. In fact, the cost of these loans can be significantly more than the annualized rates associated with conventional financing. If your loan is a payday loan, beware. Your payment will be withdrawn from your checking account every single day. If the money isn’t in your checking account, you’ll accrue additional fees, increasing the payoff amount and delaying the payoff date. Another thing to keep in mind—be sure you’re working with the lending company that actually provides the financing, versus dealing with a broker, which leads to substantially more costs.

 

Microloans

Heard of microfinancing? It’s the new buzzword in funding circles, yet its concept dates back over 200 years. The first case of microlending, attributed to the Irish Loan Fund system introduced by Jonathan Swift, sought to improve conditions for impoverished Irish citizens.

 

So what is microfinancing? According to Investopedia, “Microfinancing provides options to customers with limited resources to promote participation in productive activities or to support a small business.” Simply put, it’s a type of banking service for unemployed or low-income individuals or groups who have no other access to financial services. Some microlenders even provide information in the areas of financial literacy, such as understanding interest rates and managing financial risks. Several organizations, including the Small Business Administration, offer microloans to help emerging businesses and underserved individuals get solid financial footing to start and grow their businesses.

 

The SBA offers microloans of up to $50,000 with a maximum term of six years. Administered through community nonprofits, the loans can be used for working capital or for the purchase of inventory, supplies, furniture, fixtures, machinery, or equipment. You can’t use the funds to pay an existing debt or to buy real estate.

 

Here’s how SBA microloans work: The SBA makes funds available to specially designated intermediary lenders—nonprofit organizations with experience in lending and technical assistance—including Justine Petersen, Grameen America, and Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs, to name but a few. These intermediaries then make loans to eligible borrowers. But before these lenders consider an application, qualifying for SBA microloan financing may require borrowers to complete specific training or planning—requirements designed to help you launch or expand your business successfully.

 

Other independent organizations—such as Bentley Microfinance Group, Association for Enterprise Opportunity, Business Center for New Americans, and Opportunity Fund—also provide microloans to the underserved community outside of the SBA model.

Should you consider a microloan for your small business?

A microloan is easier to get than a traditional loan, especially if your credit report is less than perfect or you don’t have a long credit history. If you don’t have a credit score, you can opt for a credit-building loan that lets you establish credit. On the other hand, a microloan usually costs more than a traditional bank loan.

 

Additional Government Funding Options

The federal government isn’t the only agency that can help your small business get off the ground and grow. Every state and many local governments have economic development agencies dedicated to helping both new and established businesses to grow and succeed. These agencies offer such services as start-up advice; training and resources; financial assistance through loans, grants, and tax-exempt bonds; business location and site selection assistance; and employee recruitment and training assistance.

 

Some states also provide grants for expanding childcare centers, creating energy-efficient technology, and developing marketing campaigns for tourism. These grants usually require the recipient to match funds or combine the grant with other forms of financing, such as a loan. The amount of available grant money varies, depending on each grantor and the type of business to be funded.

 

In addition to loans, the SBA also offers grants to nonprofit and educational organizations in many of its counseling and training programs. However, the SBA does not provide grants for starting or expanding a business.  

 

Here’s another way the government can help put dollars into your business. The Small Business Lending Fund (SBLF), enacted into law as part of the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010, provides capital to qualified community banks and community development loan funds (CDLFs) to encourage small business lending.

 

What does that mean to the small-business owner? Your community bank can be a resource for commercial and industrial loans; owner-occupied nonfarm, nonresidential real estate loans; loans to finance agricultural production and other loans to farmers; and loans secured by farmland.

 

If you’re in the biomedical space, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) can be another resource for your business. The NIH is the largest public funder of biomedical research in the world, offering funding for many types of grants, contracts, and even programs that help repay loans for researchers.

 

Should you consider government funding for your small business?

Government funding may come with free technical assistance, including workshops, seminars, or onsite consultations. Sometimes government agencies bring together all the recipients of a particular grant, facilitating peer-to-peer learning. These gatherings often provide grantees with their first introduction to others delivering similar services in the same city—which, in turn, can lead to more potential funding or resource-sharing opportunities.

 

However, as you’d expect, a great deal of red tape goes hand-in-hand with government funding. We’re talking time-consuming paperwork, meticulous recordkeeping, and demanding reports. And you can anticipate that the agency providing government funds for your program will closely monitor the use of those funds. It’s also possible that the receipt of government dollars will discourage donations from private sources.

 

Crowdfunding

It all started in 1997, when a British rock band funded their reunion tour through online donations from fans. Since then, crowdfunding has become a smart option for entrepreneurs and others to raise money, awareness, and support for a business or a project, especially when turned down by traditional lenders.

 

Through online platforms like Kickstarter, Indiegogo, Fundly, RocketHub, and Fundable, your small business can receive needed funding, with donations ranging from as little as $5 up to $5,000 and more. In exchange, your business offers rewards like T-shirts, tickets to shows, or perhaps a personal call from the founder of the company. The better the reward, the better the chance of donations.

In addition to soliciting donations, you can use the crowdfunding concept to get a loan. The site LendingClub, for example, allows members to directly invest in and borrow from each other, essentially eliminating the banking middleman.

 

Should you consider crowdfunding for your small business?

According to the research firm Massolution, the estimated fundraising volume for global crowdfunding is a whopping $34 billion. But while there’s money to be had, crowdfunding has its drawbacks as well. If you don’t have a great story to tell or a terrific product to sell, then your crowdfunding bid could fail. Some crowdfunding sites don’t collect money until a fundraiser reaches the goal. If your efforts fall short, you’ve wasted a lot of time, energy, and other resources. And then there’s the risk of getting sued if you fail to deliver your rewards.

 

Venture Capital

VC—venture capital—spells big bucks to some companies. An entrepreneur will seek this type of equity financing when the company’s size, assets, or stage of development precludes more traditional funding sources, such as public markets and banks. Venture capitalists generally invest cash in exchange for shares as well as an active role in the invested company.

 

Should you consider venture capital for your small business?

Venture capitalists typically focus on young, high-growth companies, invest equity capital rather than debt, offer a longer investment horizon than traditional financing, and actively monitor the companies in their investment portfolios. Lenders like EarlyShares and MicroVentures generally require some equity cushion or security (collateral) before they will lend to a small business.

 

Venture capital provides businesses a financial cushion, but at what cost? Equity providers have the last call against the company’s assets and require a higher rate of return or return on investment (ROI) than lenders receive. So it’s vitally important to weigh the pros and cons before engaging in a venture capital relationship.

 

Angel Investment

Many startups opt for an angel on their shoulder. Angel investors provide funding for early-stage or startup companies in exchange for an equity ownership interest. Often referred to as a business angel, informal investor, angel funder, private investor, or seed investor, the typical angel invests anywhere from $25,000 to $1.5 million.

 

How do you find an angel investor? Forbes lists a variety of ways—through other entrepreneurs, lawyers, and accountants; AngelList; crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo; or through a colleague or friend of an angel.

 

Check out organizations like CircleUp or Gust that provide online platforms to connect entrepreneurs with angel investors. CircleUp offers the largest online marketplace for investing in innovative consumer and retail companies. Gust connects startups with over 1000 investment groups around the world, resulting in more than $1.8 billion invested in startups to date.

 

Should you consider angel investment for your small business?

Angels can be a Godsend for a startup and the investment usually comes in the form of a lump sum. However, angel investors expect a high rate of return, often 25 percent or more. And as a major investor, your angel may also feel entitled to some control over your company’s future.

 

The Bottom Line

At the end of the day, when you’re considering how to fund your business idea, the best option is one that helps you achieve your business objectives with minimal risk or high rates. That often turns out to be invoice factoring with Triumph Business Capital. Triumph believes the hardest part about your job shouldn’t be getting paid. Get paid today.

 

Have questions about invoice factoring or the options listed above? Please leave us a comment below.

Factoring Funding

Is Invoice Factoring Right For You?

Invoice factoring is a saving grace for many industries, from transportation and staffing to small and mid-size businesses as well as government contractors. In fact, invoice factoring can offer welcome financial relief if you’re just starting a business, have bad credit, can’t get funding from banks, or are at risk of losing your business.

A simple process

Invoice factoring lets you convert your invoices into immediate cash to cover operating costs without taking on debt. You simply perform a service for your customer or deliver a product, and send your invoice to a factoring company like Triumph Business Capital to get paid. You immediately receive payment upon completion of the load or job being invoiced.

The process is simple and virtually seamless. Triumph purchases the invoice. If you’re a recourse client, Triumph takes the factoring fee out, then a small portion of that invoice goes into a reserve account, usually 5 or 10 percent. This “advance rate” of 90 or 95% is released once the invoice is paid.

If you’re in a non-recourse agreement, you receive 100% of invoice minus the factoring fee. Since the factor assumes all risk in this type of agreement, there is no reserve held in the event that an invoice does not pay.

The pros

You get money when you need it.

Invoice factoring is fast cash in the bank to help cover day-to-day expenses, restock materials, pay staff—or just about anything you need. The alternative? Wait . . . wait . . . wait . . . and then wait even longer—30 days, 60 days, or more—to get paid by clients. But with fast cash in hand, you can keep loyal customers on longer payment terms.

Your invoice factoring company grows with you.

Compare invoice factoring to a traditional bank loan and there’s no competition. Bad credit? Limited operating history? Loan declined? No problem. Invoice factoring companies base their decision on the quality of your customers’ credit, not your own credit or business history. You get cash based on your invoices, not your company’s net worth.

The cons

You might pay higher fees than traditional financing.

Invoice factoring can have higher fees than traditional financing—but it’s a small price to pay for peace of mind. Triumph’s fee takes into account the credit risk associated with your customers and the time it takes them to pay their invoices. In fact, invoice factoring provides cash flow that meets your business where it is today and can grow as your business grows because it’s based on your actual account receivables.

Always transparent, always fair, Triumph Business Capital offers options that match each client’s financing needs without incurring debt.

Your factor may work directly with your customer.

Invoice factoring companies work directly with your customers to collect payments on your invoices. You’ll need to ensure that the factoring company you choose is ethical, fair, and respectful. Triumph Business Capital is a proud member of the International Factoring Association (IFA), and strictly adheres to the IFA’s code of ethics. We ensure a smooth transition for both you and your customers.

Your financing depends on your customer’s credit.

Lastly, recognize that your customer’s bad credit may derail your financing. The factoring company may reject your invoices to any customer that isn’t creditworthy.

Three questions to consider

How do you know if invoice factoring is right for you? Ask yourself these three simple questions.

  1. Can my problem be fixed by factoring?
  2. Can I cover the cost of factoring and still make a profit?
  3. Are my customers creditworthy?

Ready to get started? Learn how Triumph Business Capital can help you factor your invoices—because the hardest part about your job shouldn’t be getting paid.

Business Factoring

4 Common Risks Associated with Factoring Your Invoices

Many businesses turn to Triumph business capital to get their invoices factored for relief from today’s financial pressures. Faster and easier than a bank loan, getting an invoice factored doesn’t rely on your credit or your years in operation. You simply convert your invoices into immediate cash to cover operating costs without taking on debt.

In some cases, factoring an invoice is the only way a business can get cash quickly. In others, it’s simply the smartest way to get cash today. But what risks are involved when it comes to factoring your invoicesinvoice factoring involve?

1. Can you trust the factor?

In its infancy, a few unprofessional factoring companies charged excessive fees and used deceptive business practices, giving the entire industry a black eye. Now, however, factoring is not only widely accepted; it’s a trusted funding source for businesses across many industries.

Of course, before entering into any business relationship, you should always exercise due diligence. Investigate how long the factor has been in business and find out where its headquarters are located. Check into the background of its management team. Go a step further and ask for referrals from current clients, and then research complaints or lawsuits using web searches, the Better Business Bureau, and your state’s Attorney General’s Office. Remember to trust your gut: if you feel you can’t build trust with the factor, walk away.

As a respected industry leader and a proud member of the International Factoring Association (IFA), Triumph Business Capital strictly adheres to the IFA’s code of ethics. Providing invoice factoring for over 7,000 small to mid-sized businesses since 2004, Triumph Business Capital is backed by the extensive assets of Triumph Bancorp, Inc., a financial holding company that maintains a diversified line of community banking, commercial finance, and asset management activities.

2. What about uncollectible invoices?

Triumph Business Capital offers two kinds of factoring arrangements to handle invoices—recourse and non-recourse. Both eliminate the hassles and headaches of collecting invoices, so you can spend more time growing your business, gaining more opportunities to find new shippers, or taking the next load because you’ve already been paid.

With recourse factoring, you ultimately take the responsibility for the payment of the invoice. If the customer doesn’t pay the debt, then the seller is liable to repay the factoring company. With non-recourse factoring, your company pays slightly higher fees, but takes on a lower risk. The factoring company assumes all the responsibility for collecting the debt. This lower-risk option is better for many small companies that can’t absorb the cost of unpaid invoices.

3. How will the factor communicate with your customers?

Triumph has designed a seamless process for our clients to transition to factor their invoices. To start, we create a lockbox to accept payments in care of your company. Either you create your invoices or we create them for you. In either case, all invoices are stamped by Triumph with a “Notice of Assignment.” Your debtor will know that the invoice has been assigned to Triumph Business Capital as a third-party partner to help you manage your Accounts Receivable financing.

4. Is your customer creditworthy?

Savvy business owners like you know that perfect customers are rare, and even your best customers may be slow to pay your invoices. At some point, your current or future customers may not be able to pay you at all.

That’s why it’s crucial to confirm your customer’s creditworthiness before conducting business with them. But routine credit checks can be a hefty expense for your business. Triumph Business Capital runs customer credit reports all day long—for free. It’s the Triumph advantage.

When you factor your invoices with Triumph Business Capital, we monitor the creditworthiness of your customers at every transaction. By doing so, we reduce the amount of risk you take, directly reducing the amount of invoices that get kicked back after 90 days. Invoice factoring is about reducing your financial risk, after all. Let’s get you paid.

The benefits outweigh the risks

Bottom line—the hardest part about your job shouldn’t be getting paid.

Factoring your invoice provides you with the immediate cash you need to run and expand your business. No more need to process invoices. Worried about your balance sheet? This financing doesn’t show up as debt. Factoring your invoices is easy, fast, and flexible.

Ready to get started? Factor your invoices with Triumph Business Capital today.

Factoring Invoices

How to Avoid the Net-30 Trap and Actually Get Paid

It’s a headache and a hassle, and it causes complete confusion—It’s the Net-30 Trap. Does it mean you get paid 30 days from the date on the invoice, 30 days after the client bills their client, or within 30 days of what exactly? Do you get paid at all? What is net 30 anyway?

It’s a power play—and you lose

Fact is, “Payment Terms Net 30” can mean different things to different people—but in most cases, the client wins. In essence, net 30 means you’re extending credit to your client long after you’ve delivered as promised. Fair? I think not.

Chances are, you’ve seen or heard about large companies using their purchasing power to force a supplier to agree to terms that are more favorable to the large company—like a longer period of time to pay or relaxed rules for returning goods. How about the promise of future work to keep you at arm’s length when it’s time to get paid?

If you’re like most trucking or staffing companies, small to mid-size businesses (SMB), or government contractors, you don’t have great cash flow or a big cushion to fall back on. That forces you to finance your customers and accept their net-30 terms, or worse—net 60, or even net 90—leaving you looking like less than a good risk for banks or anyone else checking into your creditworthiness. And with few assets to balance such cash flow challenges, you’re not likely to have leverage to increase credibility and trust.

Three courses of action—and you win

1. Charge interest

One tried-and-true method to help ensure you’re paid—on your terms—is to charge interest if payment isn’t received on time. After all, the threat of interest for late payments is part of our everyday life, from credit cards to loans and even utility bills. In some cases, charging interest may be enough incentive for clients to pay on time.

2. Factor your invoices

Invoice factoring helps take the 30, 60, 90—or never—financial burden off your shoulders, allowing you to pay your bills and staff, stock up on materials, and sleep at night. You simply sell your invoices at a small discount to a factoring company such as Triumph Business Capital, and get immediate cash for your business. Learn more about how invoice factoring works in Invoice Factoring: The Antidote for Net-30, 60, 90, or Never .

3. Walk away

Your last course of action is to be willing to walk away. If the deal looks bad, or too good to be true; if you’re worried about a prospective client’s ability or willingness to pay—walk away before it’s too late. In the short term, taking the job gets you the work; but in the long term, you’d be taking on trouble—big time trouble.

Already stuck in a situation where you’re doing work and still not getting paid? Stop the work; your client will see this and make paying you a priority.

It’s time to get paid

Let’s face it: the hardest part about your job shouldn’t be getting paid. Free your business from the Net-30 Trap and factor your invoices with Triumph Business Capital to get paid, today.

Invoice Factoring

Invoice Factoring: The Antidote for Net 30, 60, 90, or Never

You do the work, deliver the product or service, and wait. And wait. And wonder—will you get paid on time or have to make countless calls to get your money?

Let’s face it. One of the biggest challenges facing small and mid-size businesses (SMB) is getting paid—especially since many companies are increasingly stretching invoice payment from 30 days to 90 days or even longer.

In the meantime, you have employee salaries, vendor payments, and taxes to pay—regardless of whether or not your customer pays you. How, then, do you cover your day-to-day expenses, much less expand your business? You could, of course, apply for a bank loan and cope with its cumbersome paperwork, lengthy process, and restrictive funds limit—not to mention possible rejection. Or your can opt for a more business-friendly way to go—invoice factoring.

What is invoice factoring?

To understand invoice factoring, you have to understand what it is not. Invoice factoring is not debt collection—running after businesses to pay their bills. Nor is it a business loan or line of credit.

You simply convert your invoices into immediate cash to cover operating costs without taking on debt. Invoice factoring helps take the 30, 60, 90—or never—financial burden off your shoulders and, frankly, lets you sleep at night.

Invoice factoring goes by several names—accounts receivable financing, AR factoring, and invoice financing. No matter what you call it, the process is the same: you sell your invoices at a small discount to a factoring company and receive immediate cash for your business. No more need to process invoices. Depending on your agreement, bad debt is also reduced as the factor may assume financial risk if the invoice is not paid. The bottom line—invoice factoring gives you fast access to funds with greater flexibility, minus the bad debt.

Less stress, more cash

You could say that invoice factoring is a stress reliever. It takes the billing and collecting off your plate and transfers it onto the factor’s. It also gives you greater control of your company’s finances by providing the necessary capital when your company needs it. Say goodbye to your customers’ accounts payable procedures or terms, or a traditional bank’s underwriting processes or delays—and your own cash flow problems. How’s that for control?

Another benefit? With fast cash in hand, you can pay vendors more quickly and take advantage of their discount offers, saving you money.

How does invoice factoring work?

Unlike conventional lending methods, invoice factoring is based on the quality of your customers’ credit, not your own credit or business history. You receive cash based on your invoices, not your company’s net worth. That’s welcome relief for start-ups with minimal capital or for businesses experiencing financial challenges or bad credit. Worried about your balance sheet? This financing doesn’t show up as debt.

 

The factoring process works quickly and easily: you deliver a product or perform a service for your customer and send your invoice to a factoring company like Triumph Business Capital. You immediately receive a cash advance on your invoice from the factor, who then collects full payment from your customer, and pays you the balance of your invoice, minus a fee. After verifying the creditworthiness of your customer, the factor may not accept invoices for a customer that has a history of late or missed payments.

Invoice factoring vs. traditional loan

Still not sold on invoice factoring?

Consider this: bank loan processing can take weeks or longer. In that case, you might as well wait for the customer to pay you. Invoice factoring, on the other hand, is fast. You can be paid within 24 hours. You decide which invoices to factor and when.

Invoice factoring is also more flexible than a bank loan. You aren’t locked into a long repayment period. And the cash you receive for invoices is unrestricted—you can use the funds however you want. Compare that to a business loan that requires the money to be used for specific purposes.

Who factors?

Invoice factoring has been around for over 4,000 years, dating back to the time of King Hammurabi of Mesopotamia.

In the 1900s, the most popular industries for invoice factoring were the garment and textile industries. There was simply no better way to continue to buy raw materials to produce clothing and textiles.

In the 1940s, transportation industries were added to the roster of factoring participants. From the 1960s through the ’80s, rising interest rates and bank regulations made invoice factoring more popular because it didn’t require the same sort of credit checks. Today, small to mid-size businesses finance their working capital by factoring over $1 billion annually.

“Companies of all sizes, with annual revenues from $10,000 to $10 million, continually approach us for invoice factoring,” says Steven Hausman, President of Triumph Business Capital, an industry leader headquartered in Dallas, Texas. “We have provided factoring for over 7,000 small to mid-size businesses since 2004. We have a long track record with the transportation industry. Staffing agencies, government contractors, and small businesses are increasingly seeking us out to help solve their cash flow challenges.”

The difference between recourse and non-recourse factoring

Just as there are varying client needs, there are various types of factoring arrangements. With recourse factoring, the client ultimately takes the responsibility for the payment of the invoice. Larger companies often use lower-cost recourse factoring. If the customer doesn’t pay the debt, then the seller is liable to repay the factoring company.

Non-recourse factoring allows companies to sell their invoices to the factoring company, which then assumes all of the credit risks for the collection of the invoice. Triumph Business Capital employs non-recourse factoring and assumes all the risk of collecting the debt. That’s a lower risk option for small companies that can’t absorb the cost of unpaid invoices, but it does cost slightly more than recourse factoring.

A small price to pay for substantial relief

What will all this convenience cost you? Invoice factoring can have higher fees than traditional financing, with non-recourse factoring fees based on a variety of considerations.

During the application process, Triumph analyzes the credit risk associated with your customers, the time it takes them to pay their invoices, and the monthly funding volume forecast for your business.

Triumph then offers pricing options that match each client’s budget and risk tolerance. As an added benefit, factoring fees are deductible as a business expense.

Why Triumph Business Capital?

Triumph Business Capital is a proud member of the International Factoring Association (IFA), and strictly adheres to the IFA’s code of ethics.

Originally called Advance Business Capital, the company changed its name when it joined Triumph Bancorp, Inc. in 2012. As a financial holding company, Triumph Bancorp, Inc. maintains a diversified line of community banking, commercial finance, and asset management activities. Since day one, the company’s vision has focused on four core business priorities.

  • Delivering value
  • Developing people
  • Demonstrating expertise
  • Displaying a commitment to enterprise success

“Many clients have been with us since our early days—testament to the integrity of our service and dedication to their business,” says Hausman. “Our team is professional and courteous. We’re a partner with our clients to help them find success with their customers.”

Triumph customers couldn’t agree more. A senior executive at JP Transport, LLC spoke about Triumph: “I have been beyond impressed with the service from Triumph Business Capital. My payments are processed on time every time. The online submission process is fast and easy. Reports on various payment statistics are helpful. I’ve been contacted by Triumph staff just to check on how things are going. Couldn’t be more satisfied.”

Is invoice factoring right for you?

If you’re often caught in the net-30, -60, -90—or never—battle with customers, let us help you determine if invoice factoring is right for your business. Our answers to the following frequently asked questions may get you one step closer to the cash flow relief and improved client relationships that invoice factoring provides.

Q. How much do I have to factor?

A. You have total control over which invoices you want to factor and when. Keep in mind, though, that once you decide to factor one of your accounts, it’s generally required that you factor all the invoices for that customer in order to reduce payment confusion.

Q. What are the costs?

A. The fees for invoice factoring depend on several items, including your customer’s credit risk, how long they take to pay your invoices, and your monthly funding volume. Always transparent, always fair. In any case, your factoring fees will stay the same throughout your entire contract and are contract determined before we purchase your first invoice.

Q. What if I’ve been rejected for a bank loan? Will a factor reject me?

A. Unlike traditional lending, invoice factoring does not rely solely on your credit. Invoice factoring is based on the quality of your customers’ credit, not your own credit or business history.

Q. Can invoice factoring improve relationships with my customers?

A. Absolutely! First, invoice factoring can help increase your credibility. Here’s how: invoice factoring is a recognized, established method for a company to optimize cash flow. Since banks have tightened credit policies for small businesses and startups, many companies now use factoring instead. A factoring company’s willingness to finance your invoices serves as an endorsement of your business as a solid company and a good risk.

Invoice factoring also allows you to give more attention to your customer’s needs—instead of worrying about their payments. Triumph has a decade of experience and dedicated teams that work closely with you to handle the invoicing and collecting of payments. These courteous professionals partner with you to enhance the relationship you’ve built with your customers.

Transitioning to invoice factoring is seamless. Triumph stamps each invoice with payment instructions known as a Notice of Assignment. It’s a very smooth transition for both you and your customers.

Lastly, invoice factoring helps you keep better track of your invoices. Triumph’s online account management, for instance, provides a full array of client reporting and real-time information. The goal is to keep you totally informed on the status of your customers and accounts—and give you the cash you need, when you need it.

Trucking? Staffing? SMB? Government Contractor? Get paid today!

Any business owner or consultant would readily agree that getting paid shouldn’t be the hardest part of the job. Thanks to factors like Triumph Business Capital, it doesn’t have to be.

Freight factoring lets trucking companies get the show on the road. They can pay drivers, insurance, fuel, and other expenses on time, and never have to turn down another job due to lack of cash in hand.

Staffing companies can relax, knowing that they’ll make payroll on time, every time. Small and mid-size businesses can easily replenish their operating capital and get back in business. Government contractors can have the working capital they need to keep the company going strong, without monthly minimums, long-term requirements, or “risk” contracts.

If large invoices or slow payments are standing in the way of your company’s production and expansion, it’s time to learn how invoice factoring can work for your industry—and how Triumph Business Capital can help you get paid today. Get started now, and leave the net 30, 60, 90—or never—far behind.

Successful Entrepreneur

5 Signs You’re a Real-Deal Entrepreneur

You took the leap and started a business, but now you lie awake at night feeling like a fraud, like you don’t deserve the success you’ve created.

It’s called imposter syndrome, a term coined in 1978 by two clinical psychologists referring to high-achieving individuals who are unable to internalize their accomplishments. Before you spend another minute telling yourself that your success is just a matter of luck and has nothing to do with your hard work, take a look at these five characteristics that prove you’re a real-deal entrepreneur.

1. You executed an idea

“Good ideas are not adopted automatically. They must be driven into practice with courageous patience.” – Hyman Rickover

Anyone can have an idea. It takes execution to turn that idea into a business. No matter what your business idea is, it’s virtually guaranteed that someone else has—or had—the same idea. It’s the execution of the idea that brings it to fruition and makes it unique and worthwhile.

Just think: there are plenty of social networks, but only one Facebook. There are several search engines, but only one Google. There are many electric vehicles, but only one Tesla. Without proper execution, the greatest ideas die out.

2. You have drive and conviction

“The price of success is hard work, dedication to the job at hand, and the determination that whether we win or lose, we have applied the best of ourselves to the task at hand.” – Vince Lombardi

Entrepreneurship is not for the faint of heart. Starting a business takes perseverance. All entrepreneurs take financial risks, work long hours, and face setbacks, but you have the drive and conviction to continue to overcome whatever obstacles emerge.

Whether your end goal is to build wealth, achieve a flexible schedule, or leave a legacy, you have the passion and the drive to push through and build your dreams.

3. You don’t let failure stop you

“Failure is success in progress.” – Albert Einstein

Those who are weak lose motivation when things don’t go as planned, but you know that failure is a springboard to growth. Instead of giving up in the face of failure, you use it as an opportunity to reset your perspective, make necessary changes, or have that “aha” moment of inspiration you’ve been waiting for.

In her column for Forbes, writer Alison Coleman interviewed Virgin Group founder Richard Branson. With nearly five decades in business, Branson is known primarily for huge successes—but he’s faced his share of failures, too. He offers this advice for entrepreneurs facing failure: “Failure is a necessary part of business, so it’s incredibly important for all entrepreneurs and business leaders to know when to call it a day, learn from their mistakes, and move on, fast.”

4. You built a top-notch team

“Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people.” – Steve Jobs

As you know, a growing business can’t be built solely by one individual. It requires a team of people with complementary skills. Whether your entire team is on payroll or you rely on a network of consultants and independent contractors, you’ve created a top-notch team that brings new perspectives and specialized knowledge that enhances your business.

5. You invest in yourself

“Investing in yourself is the best thing you can do. Anything that improves your own talents; nobody can tax it or take it away from you. They can run up huge deficits and the dollar can become worth far less. But if you’ve got talent yourself, and you’ve maximized your talent, you’ve got a tremendous asset that can return tenfold.” – Warren Buffett

When most people think of investing, they think of stocks, bonds, commodities, or even investing in the dream of another entrepreneur—but all of these investments rely on someone else to turn a profit.

You’re different because you know that the best investment involves turning your passion into financial success. You’re always open to learning and sharpening your skills. You read books, listen to inspirational podcasts, take seminars or classes, grow your network, and invest in your own health and wellbeing.

Get paid instantly

So, fueled by your personal drive and with input from the team you’ve assembled, you’ve followed through on your idea and overcome the obstacles—all while continuing to invest in yourself. Congratulations, entrepreneur, you’re the real deal!

Even real entrepreneurs like you need a quick influx of cash to build on their momentum and continue growing. Learn more about how invoice factoring can help you improve cash flow and be prepared for potential shortfalls.

Recruiting College Graduates

3 Ways to Successfully Recruit Leading College Grads

1.9 million college students are expected to graduate this year and most of them will want to start their career right after they walk across the stage.

By targeting college graduates, your staffing agency can dip into a talent pool that comes to the workforce with fresh, new ideas and a willingness to learn and be trained. It’s important to know who to look for and how to win them over to your client’s company.

So how do you get the best talent out of the Class of 2016? Here are three ways to successfully recruit the best of the best this year.

1. Attend career fairs

Many colleges and universities across the nation host career fairs for their students to meet potential employers. By attending these job fairs, employers can meet a number of top candidates. Also, students who attend career fairs tend to be more serious about their future, so these fairs are often effective places to recruit the best talent.

One way to find the best career fairs is by targeting schools. If you’re seeking graduates with a particular degree, Workforce Locator can help you find the top schools for that major.

Remember to engage with students at the career fair. Many times, representatives stand behind their tables without interacting with students as they pass by. Unless you represent a company that is very well known, many students won’t know about you, what you offer, or how you can jumpstart their career. Step in front of the table and take the initiative to connect with every student who walks by your booth.

2. Appeal to their deeper interests

Millennials have different interests than previous generations when it comes to what they want from their employers. In a recent study, 83% of millennials chose their positions based on employee benefits and 54% took a job based on flexible hours and work schedules.

For most millennials, it’s not just about the money. However, because recent college graduates typically carry a large amount of student debt, many companies are taking steps to help them pay down their loans. For example, starting in July, Pricewaterhouse Coopers’ junior employees will be eligible to receive up to $1,200 per year for up to six years as assistance from the company to pay down college debt.

Recent college graduates are also looking for a company that can provide a career path and development opportunities. They want to know that they are valued and that they will have opportunities to learn the skills they need to move up the career ladder to a more prestigious, high-paying position.

3. Understand that their experience may be limited

Train your recruiters and hiring managers to understand that a recent college graduate’s resume will look different from the resume of candidates with more career experience. Many times, the students have been involved in internships or campus leadership positions, which can mitigate their lack of on-the-job experience.

In a Monster article, Enterprise Rent-A-Car regional recruiting supervisor, Chris Fitzpatrick, commented on how a candidate’s involvement in college can help hiring managers connect the dots.
“Involvement in sports breeds competitiveness. Membership in fraternities, sororities, and other clubs and organizations helps develop leadership skills. Although a communications major may not have learned case studies about risk management, the ability to communicate verbally, nonverbally, and cross culturally is vastly more critical. Soft skills such as communication, work ethic, flexibility, and leadership transcend the college majors and are better identified when an entire picture of a candidate’s college experience is seen.”

You can always teach the skills that recent graduates may lack; so if you see a lot of involvement in college on their resumes, it means they are probably driven and dedicated individuals. Oftentimes a student’s non-career experiences during college will translate into the skills needed to do the job.

According to a recent study conducted by Leadership IQ, “89% of the time a new hire fails, it is for attitudinal reasons, not for technical competence reasons.” If you have a candidate who fits culturally, but lacks teachable skills, that individual might still be the right person for the job.

For more Staffing Tips, stay up-to-date by bookmarking our blog, or follow us on Facebook.

Freight Brokers

7 Common Bookkeeping Mistakes Freight Brokers Make

Freight brokers have a lot of responsibilities, from matching shippers and carriers to making sure each piece of cargo gets to the right place. Another essential task in this busy industry is bookkeeping. Freight brokers who don’t prioritize bookkeeping can end up losing money in the long run. Here are seven common bookkeeping mistakes freight brokers make and how to avoid them.

1. Attempting to DIY

In order to save money, many business owners insist on handling the books themselves or delegating the task to an inexperienced employee or family member. While you may initially save time and money, costly errors can result in higher bond premiums, more expensive financing terms, and other unforeseen expenses in the long-run.

Hiring a competent bookkeeper will save you money, because the job will be done quickly and efficiently, with fewer errors.

2. Postponing important tasks

Running any business is hard work. Many freight brokers find themselves too busy doing the day-to-day work to focus on important bookkeeping tasks such as reconciling bank and credit card accounts each month. Reconciling statements helps you catch errors and know how much cash or credit you actually have.

Although postponing this task may be tempting, you should reconcile your bank and credit card statements every month, preferably as soon as each statement is available. That way, you can identify any missing deposits, lost checks, or fraudulent charges and address these problems in a timely manner.

3. Not tracking invoices and receivables

If you’re not properly accounting for receivables, you can’t get paid. Getting paid equals cash, the lifeblood of every business.

Experienced freight brokers know that the delay between when you must pay your carriers and when you receive payment from your customers can strain your cash flow.

If tracking and collecting invoices takes too much time, consider invoice factoring. For a small fee, an invoice factoring company like Triumph Business Capital will purchase your invoices. You’ll get paid immediately without the time and expense of dealing with collections.

4. Ignoring liabilities

When a surety looks at your business financials to underwrite a bond, one of their major considerations is whether you have enough assets to cover your liabilities. Inexperienced bookkeepers sometimes remember to record a liability, but then forget to reverse the liability when the payment is made. This error results in an overstatement of liabilities and an understatement of net income, making your business look less financially stable than it actually is.

You can avoid this type of error by hiring an experienced bookkeeper. It’s also a good idea to have another set of eyes (either an owner or a CPA) review the balance sheet regularly and look for unusual account balances.

5. Miscategorizing expenses

Another common error made by inexperienced bookkeepers is miscategorizing expenses or creating too many expense categories. Most businesses and industries have a fairly standard set of expense categories. Miscategorizing expenses or creating too many categories can be a big red flag, signaling to a surety or loan underwriter that your books are not well prepared.

Set up your accounting software correctly from the start with the help of an experienced bookkeeper or accountant and don’t add new expense categories without careful consideration. If you’re unsure of how to classify an expense, ask your CPA or accountant for guidance.

6. Missing details on invoices

When invoicing your customers, you need to provide sufficient detail on each line item. For example, is the charge a flat fee, or do you invoice per mile, per piece, or by weight? If you include additional charges, such as reimbursement for fees or fuel, you should list these as separate line items. Make sure the charges are properly detailed so there is no confusion.

Including the necessary details on your invoices will prevent pushback from your customers for charges they don’t recognize. Any missing information can cause delays in payment—a headache no business owner needs.

7. Missing out on accounting software functionality

Often, in an effort to get their business running, freight brokers purchase an accounting software package but never take the time to learn how to use it correctly. If you’re outsourcing all your accounting and bookkeeping tasks, this is probably not an issue. On the other hand, if you’re using the software at all, even just to enter checks and run reports, you should take the time to learn all of the available functions.

The right accounting software, when used correctly, can save you time and give you real-time information on the state of your business—information you can use to make important business decisions.

Get paid instantly

Want to take one task off your endless to-do list? Learn more about how invoice factoring can put cash in your bank account, while Triumph Business Capital handles the time-consuming task of calling shippers to collect on invoices.

Truck Parking Problem

The Parking Problem

In 2009, a trucker named Jason Rivenburg was shot and killed by a man who stole $7 in cash from him. Forced to park in an abandoned gas station when he became tired, Jason became the victim of a brutal crime. Sadly there are other stories similar to this one; it’s not the first time this has happened nor was it the last. It’s been 7 years since the murder of Jason Rivenburg, and even after a law has been passed, can we say that much has been done to address this problem?

According to a recent report from the Federal Highway Administration, 72% of states reported having problems with truck parking. What is causing the problem for the lack of parking? There are a couple of factors that could be playing into this:

• HOS Rules

With the hours of service rules in place, truckers may not be able to find parking when the clock runs out. In an article by Fleet Owner, one trucker said that the closest safe parking to his intended destination was 15 miles away. In traffic, that distance could be up to 45 minutes. Because of HOS rules, this 45 minutes could cause a trucker to go over his or her allotted time. The impact of hours of service rules on truck parking is causing many truckers to park in unsafe areas, like along highways, interstates, exit ramps and abandoned lots.

• Lack of truck stops

The United States went through a recession in 2008. During this time, trucks on the road decreased and many truck stops had more spaces than trucks. A couple of years after, the economy picked back up as well as the number of trucks on the road. However, truck stops haven’t caught up to the demand, creating a lack of safe parking at truck stops.

So what’s the solution?

After the tragedy involving Jason Rivenburg in 2009, legislation occurred to increase available, safe parking for truckers through Jason’s Law. The law was passed in 2012 providing more than $6 million to put toward the construction of safe truck parking.

In 2015, the National Coalition on Truck Parking was created through the Federal Highway Administration to address this shortage. The coalition met in the fall of 2015 after the survey results of Jason’s Law confirmed the lack of safe parking available. During this meeting, the coalition defined some obstacles and opportunities to reaching the ultimate goal.
The United States Department of Transportation conducted a Beyond Traffic study and concluded that by 2040 the amount of freight moving in this country will increase by 45 percent. Therefore, the truck parking issue needs to be addressed way before we get to that point.

Many truck stops are expanding their spaces and giving truckers the option of “reserving” spots. However, this can cost money, and should a trucker have to pay for his or her safety? Another option for truckers is the big box stores that sometimes let truckers park in their parking lots. Many of their parking lots have the ability to hold that amount of weight, because freight is coming in and out constantly, However, not all big box stores have the same policies. While some are welcoming to big rigs, others turn them away. This is not always a viable option, so it can’t be the only solution.

In addition to the coalition formed, Truckers Had Enough has created a video creating more awareness of the truck parking problem.

Ultimately, we can create laws and coalitions, but in the end, we need to prevent more Jason Rivenburg situations; we need a solution.

Social Media Tips, Staffing Agencies

5 Social Media Tips for Staffing Agencies

If you work for a staffing agency, social media can be a powerful tool to help your firm grow by finding the right candidates.

Agencies that aren’t utilizing social media marketing in their strategy are missing valuable opportunities. However, with many platforms available, it can be challenging to determine which are most effective and which are simply a waste of time. In this article, we’ll share five social media tips to increase your staffing opportunities.

1. Understand your target audience

Each social media platform features its own audience. The first step to develop a solid social media strategy is to pinpoint the demographics. Who are your ideal candidates? Focus your efforts on the channels where those individuals will likely be found.

2. Ensure brand credibility and consistency

Another important component of a good social media strategy is branding. Undoubtedly, you will be competing with dozens of other recruiters, all of whom are vying for the same top talent. To grab and keep the attention of potential candidates, your brand must stand out as both credible and consistent. Be sure your agency maintains an active online presence with an image and voice that are consistent across all platforms.

3. Find the right platform

One social media marketing mistake many businesses make—staffing companies included—is trying to spread their resources too thin. Sure, you could be active on multiple social media channels, but that doesn’t mean you have to be. In fact, doing so could have a negative effect. Instead, focus on mastering the top few platforms where you’re most likely to reach your target audience.

4. Make your content searchable

Keywords aren’t just for search engine optimization (SEO). They also make your content easier to find. In fact, search engines rank social media sites so favorably that leveraging the right keywords can increase your results, making locating the right candidates far easier. In the company description, incorporate targeted keywords and links to the agency’s other social media accounts. Keyword-rich “about me” descriptions will enhance your online search ability and visibility. And don’t forget to incorporate relevant hashtags on all posts to better reach your target audience. Hashtags make it easier for your audience to find, follow, and contribute to a conversation.

5. Tap into your current workforce

Successful recruiters have a built-in network of referral opportunities in the candidates they’ve already matched with companies in need. Why not tap into this resource to help spread the word socially about other openings you’re trying to fill? Today’s consumers trust online recommendations just as much as if they’d come from a friend, family member, or colleague; and getting others to share on your behalf provides access to additional networks of potential candidates.

Where to spend your time

Now that you’ve built a strong foundation to support your social media strategy, let’s take a quick look at which platforms tend to be the most beneficial marketing channels for staffing agencies.

  • LinkedIn: Advanced search allows you to look for prospects using keywords, job titles, industries, and more.
  • Blog Posts: Leverage the power of SEO to help candidates find you and learn about your openings.
  • Facebook: Use the new advertising format to target candidates based on a number of variables.
  • Twitter: Use keywords to search for qualified candidates.

For more details on recommended social media platforms for recruiters as well as other valuable tips, watch this short video clip.

And be sure to bookmark our Staffing Blog for the best staffing agency resources, professional advice, tips, tricks, and much more.

Cash Advance

How to Close the Sale

Whether you realize it or not, at some point in your career you will inevitably face the need to sell something, be it a product or service, or even yourself as a qualified candidate in a job interview. Learning how to effectively close the sale, regardless of what’s at stake, is an important part of being successful in any line of work. For many, it’s also one of the most challenging. Here are a few key points to keep in mind that will help you become more adept at negotiating and sealing the deal in any situation.

Understand your ideal customer…

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to sales. In fact, it’s something that must be tailored to the audience you’re specifically targeting if it’s going to net you the results you’re after. Having a clear understanding of who your ideal customer is and what their unique needs, wants and pain points are can help you develop a more effective sales pitch. This not only reaches your prospects where they are, but demonstrates why your product or service is something they absolutely must have.

It’s about them, not you…

You may have an amazing product or service that could help people tremendously. The problem is, if you can’t clearly communicate how your offering will specifically benefit your prospects, you’re wasting your time (and theirs). When you sell, focus on your customers’ needs rather than what you believe are the key selling points of your product. What you find great about your product may be different than how others perceive its benefits. As an added bonus, when your sales approach is focused solely on your audience, you’ll naturally begin to build valuable relationships. Because people are more likely to buy from someone that they know and trust, you’ll already be a step ahead of the game.

Use happy customers as sales tools…

You could talk for hours about how awesome your product or service is, but it doesn’t mean nearly as much as when that kind of glowing endorsement comes from an actual customer. In fact, 84% of consumers say they trust recommendations from family, colleagues and friends more than any other resource. Don’t be afraid to ask satisfied clients and customers who have had a positive experience with your brand to give a recommendation for future sales. Reviews and videos can be a strong and powerful tool for effectively closing the sale.

Ask…

It may seem obvious, but this is the step that many people tend to struggle with the most. If you’ve done your job in identifying your prospects’ needs and aligning the benefits of your product or service with those needs, the final step in asking them to sign on the dotted line shouldn’t be that difficult. What’s the worst that could happen? You’ll get a ‘no’? Overcoming objectives and dealing with rejection is par for the course, and will ultimately make you a stronger negotiator over time.

Successful individuals have one thing in common: the ability to close the sale. It doesn’t matter whether it’s the sale of your latest product, an upgrade on a particular service offering or selling yourself as the ideal candidate for that new job or promotion. The key is understanding the science and psychology behind the sales process and making that work for you. By applying the tactics listed above, you’ll be able to hone your skills and start closing deals with cool confidence and an increasing success rate.

Staffing Blog

The Cash Advance Option You Never Considered

When small businesses have a need for money, the most common next-step is to apply for a loan. What many don’t realize is that they have capital readily available to them in the form of outstanding invoices. In fact, the process of accounts receivable factoring has many favorable benefits over traditional financing methods, particularly in the case of government contracting. Let’s take a look at a few of these benefits and how invoice factoring services might be the ideal solution to your business capital needs.

Dependable Cash Flow

You can’t win a government contract if you don’t have the financial means to fulfill your bid. Don’t miss out on that upcoming RFP due to lack of positive cash-flow to back it up. Government contract financing is fast, easy and cuts out all the red tape involved in getting a loan. You’ll have access to the money you need when you need it, without having to take on additional debt in the process.

Competitive Advantage

Many small businesses feel it’s impossible to compete with larger organizations, particularly when it comes to bidding on government contracts. By working with a reputable invoice factoring company, you can step up to the plate and play ball with the big dogs. Better yet, you can do so with the confidence that comes with knowing you’ve got the funding to back it up.

Hire the Best People

Anyone who has been in business for even a short amount of time knows how important it is to hire a qualified staff of skilled, dedicated workers. Attracting and recruiting top talent is only half the battle. You also have to make sure you’re taking care of their needs so they’ll want to stay onboard for the long-term. Leveraging your outstanding invoices for upfront cash can help ensure that once you’ve landed the right candidates, you won’t lose them due to payroll disruptions or other financial woes.

Think Long Term

One of the biggest factors in successful government contracting is proper preparation ahead of time. You need to know what types of contracts you’re best suited for, how and when to best position your offer, and what bid amount would be most likely to help you come out on top. Having a plan in place for financing is a significant part of this preparation. Plan ahead, research invoice factoring as well as reputable factoring companies now. It will give you assurance that once the bid is won, you are set with your financing needs.

Transparency

Successful small business professionals value honesty and choosing an invoice factoring company is no exception. Not all providers are created equal, but if you do your homework, you can end up with a partner that provides this high level of transparency. For instance, our government contract financing services do not include any monthly minimums, and there are no hidden fees to worry about. It’s a level of trust that is rare in the factoring industry.

If you’re a small business that’s considering entering the world of government contracting, it’s important to know all of your options ahead of time, including the best way to finance your bids. Invoice factoring can provide the working capital you need to confidently throw your hat into the ring and emerge victorious.

Freight Broker Factoring

Finding the Right Freight Broker Training

When you search for freight broker training courses on Google, you will inevitably find pages and pages of results. How can you decipher which one is best for your freight brokerage? More importantly, how can you determine which one will provide the best return on your investment? Let’s take a look at a few of the key features to look for when choosing a freight broker training program for your business.

Experience

The goal of any freight broker training program is to gain as much knowledge and value as possible in order to grow your freight brokerage. To improve the chances of achieving this goal, you need a training partner that has specific experience in the freight broker industry. For example, the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) training program is backed by over 30 years of experience in the industry. Typically, the longer the company has been in business, the more reliable their training program will be.

Reputation

Along with extensive experience comes a host of satisfied customers. The reputation of the training provider you choose should be an important factor in determining whether their program is worth the investment. Are there other freight brokers or those in the transportation industry talking about this program? Look for reviews to find out if it’s legitimate. If you’re not careful and don’t do your homework, you could end up with a training program that is sub-par and fails to produce the results you’re after.

Convenience/Flexibility

Freight brokers often find themselves being pulled in a number of different directions. To accommodate this somewhat chaotic schedule, you need a training program that supports the busy freight broker lifestyle. This may include online classes or courses that can be completed at home. Of course, some people are just naturally more successful attending a physical class. Figure out what best fits your schedule and plan from there.

Cost

For most freight brokers who are just getting started, the cost of training is also an important factor. Not only do you need to find a program that will provide quality course material with training options that suit your schedule, but it will also likely need to fit within a particular budget. Companies looking to free up extra capital to fund training may consider freight broker factoring as an option. Simply sell your outstanding accounts receivables to a factoring company, like Triumph, and you could have cash in your pocket the same day. Freight broker factoring is a great alternative to other quick cash options.

As with anything else in business, choosing the freight broker training program that’s best for your freight brokerage is an important step in ensuring a qualified, well-trained staff. Knowing what characteristics to look for – such as the ones listed above – can help take you from overwhelmed to confident when choosing the best freight broker training option for you.

Staffing Tips

The Goldilocks Effect: Payroll Funding That Is Just Right

You’ve probably heard the well-worn story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. In this age-old tale, young Goldilocks is out for a walk in the woods when she stumbles upon the cabin belonging to the three bears. Upon entering and realizing nobody was home, she tests out each of the bears’ beds. Finding baby bear’s bed to be “just right,” Goldilocks promptly falls into a deep, fitful sleep. In real-life, this concept of finding solutions that are “just right” is important, especially in business.

Often times, staffing companies struggle to find the ideal solution to their cash flow woes. Let’s take a closer look at what these challenges are and how they can be overcome.

Funding Your Payroll

When it comes to paying your employees, there are a number of different options available to you. Determining which one is “just right” will depend on your specific business needs and a wide variety of other factors. These options include:

Traditional Revenue Funding – That is, relying on your incoming revenue to issue payroll. While on paper this may seem like the wisest choice, in reality, it may actually be more challenging than you may realize. After all, if your payroll is contingent solely on your income, what happens during a financial down turn? Furthermore, if most of your profits are being paid back out, this type of setup can stunt your ability to grow.

Payroll Loans – Another viable option for funding your payroll is taking out a bank loan. This isn’t necessarily a terrible idea, but it’s not the right fit for everyone. It’s important to weigh the pros and cons of taking on additional debt and to assess your company’s financial ability to repay the loan without stretching yourself too thin. Additionally, if you’re finding yourself in a position to need extra funding for your payroll needs on a regular basis, bank loans could potentially make matters worse. In fact, you may not even be approved.

Payroll Funding – The third option is invoice factoring or payroll funding. Unlike the other two methods, there is no dipping into existing or incoming funds, nor does it involve incurring any type of debt (and the interest payments that come along with it). Instead, you simply sell some or all of your outstanding accounts receivable to a factoring company for a small fee. The cash payment you receive in return can then be used to fund payroll (or any other business needs you may have).

When you consider the three available options, it becomes clear that for the majority of staffing companies, payroll funding is the solution that fits “just right.” This is especially true for smaller to mid-sized firms or those that wish to grow and expand, as it doesn’t require the use of existing profits nor does it depend on bank approval or credit-worthiness.

Some of the other benefits of staffing factoring or payroll funding include:

Fast Access to Working Capital – With the right partner, you can have the funds you need in no time. Eliminate the time-consuming task of waiting for invoices to be paid or for banks to make decisions. Get your cash when you need it.

Flexibility – If there’s one thing about the staffing industry, it’s that there can be tremendous ebbs and flows in the demand for talent. With payroll financing, you don’t have to worry about how you’ll keep up with these changing demands, because you’ll always have access to the funding you need.

Opportunity – Growth is something that many smaller staffing businesses strive to achieve. The problem is, many find it difficult to compete due to financial restraints. Having access to funding when you need it allows you to take on those larger clients without the worry of how differing payment cycles might impact your business.

Customer/Client Satisfaction – When you no longer struggle to meet payroll, regardless of external or internal circumstances, employees and the companies you place them with will find your staffing company “just right” too!

Want to learn more about payroll funding? Click here or contact us today!

Invoice Factoring

Small Business Factoring – Taking the Next Step

Keeping up with the demands of a successful business venture, while at the same time, trying to achieve ongoing growth can be quite challenging – even for the most seasoned professional. Whether it’s expanding to reach new market segments, opening additional locations, hiring more employees or whatever else the case may be, invoice factoring can provide the ideal solution to a business owner who is looking to grow his or her company. If you’re ready to take your business to a whole new level but are unsure where to begin, here are a few ways small business factoring can help.

What is Invoice Factoring?

As a small business owner, you’re probably well aware of the struggles associated with cash flow. Finding a way to fund operations and expansions without going completely in the red isn’t easy. In fact, finances are one of the biggest reasons small companies are unable to grow. So what are your options? Well, there’s always a business loan, assuming you can get approved and the interest rate makes it worth your while. Unfortunately, with banks tightening their belts and limiting the amount of funds they’re willing to extend to small business clients, this isn’t always a feasible option.

Enter small business factoring. Rather than relying on credit to create working capital, factoring for small business involves a cash payment in exchange for the purchase of your accounts receivables. There is no loan, no payments and no debt incurred. You simply receive an upfront payment for the amount of your customer invoices, minus a small fee.

Benefits of Small Business Factoring

Invoice factoring provides a number of distinct advantages over traditional funding options. Among these benefits include:

  • Fast access to cash – No more waiting for bank executives or investors to make their decisions
  • No additional debt – Access the cash you need to fund your business growth without the hassle of loan payments
  • Fewer headaches – No more worrying about chasing your customers for payments
  • Control and flexibility – Unlike loans and other forms of funding, you remain in total control over how much of your receivables you’d like to sell
  • No interest – Factoring for small business does not involve any payments or interest
  • No risk, less stress – Because invoice factoring doesn’t involve repayment, there’s no need to worry about how your business’ performance might play a role down the road

Taking the Next Step

You’ve worked hard to establish your small business and make it profitable. Now, the time has come for you to focus your efforts on growth and expansion. Invoice factoring can help you successfully achieve these goals and even exceed them without the worry or hassle of incurring more debt in the process. Getting started is easy. First, determine how much capital you need to raise in order to fund your proposed growth strategy.
With that number in mind, identify your slow paying customers and factor those accounts receivables. Then, choose an invoice factoring company with whom to work. Be sure to select a partner that has experience and a proven track record working with small businesses like yours. Finally, complete the necessary paperwork and receive your payment.

With the right kind of funding, you can focus your time and resources where they matter most: on taking your small business to the next level. If you think invoice factoring might be the right option for you, or you’d like to learn more about how this type of business funding works, contact us today!

Factoring Invoices

The Importance of Finding Your Niche While Maintaining Flexibility

The freight brokerage industry is one of intense competition. While being flexible is important, identifying a specific niche to focus on can help your firm stand out and improve your chances of sustained profitability. Some freight brokers naturally know what markets they should target based on their experience within the industry, but others – particularly those who are just starting out – may not find this decision as straightforward. If you find your company is taking on too much, or you’re struggling to differentiate yourself from your competitors, here are a few tips for locating and capitalizing on your most lucrative market.

Benefits of Niche Marketing

The reason focusing on one or two key areas is so advantageous, especially in the freight brokerage field, is because doing so allows your firm to develop a higher degree of expertise. By working in the same market segment day in and day out, you will become immersed in all of the elements that make that sector unique. Over time, this in-depth experience will help your company emerge as a trusted resource, both for existing and prospective customers. You’ll also be able to dedicate your time, effort and marketing dollars to a much more targeted audience, increasing your ROI.

Identifying Your Freight Broker Niche

Some freight brokerages find it easy to identify the specific niche markets where they’d be most likely to succeed. For others, this process takes a concerted effort. If you’re in the latter group, here are a few tips for determining which areas would be best for you to focus.

  • First, assess your company’s unique value proposition. What makes your firm so special? Why should your prospects choose your freight brokerage over another? Identifying these strengths and key competencies can help you further define the area in which your services would be most effective.
  • Next, consider the various segments in the industry to determine which most closely matches what your firm has to offer. Some niches to consider include:
    • Regional
    • Type of product/material being shipped
    • Type of trucks used
    • Specialized brokerage cargo
  • Finally, once you’ve decided on an area of focus, immerse yourself in it. Learn everything there is to know about that particular segment and start marketing your firm accordingly.

Additional Tips

Now that you’ve figured out which market your firm is best suited for, the real work can begin. Developing a strategy and establishing yourself as a key player in your chosen area of expertise isn’t something that happens overnight. It takes time and effort to truly achieve the results you’re after. That said, here are a few tips to get you moving in the right direction.

Leverage Your Experience – On-the-job experience is extremely valuable and a critical component of successfully establishing yourself as a niche market expert.

Build Your Portfolio – Focus on landing a few good clients and then build on that momentum. Over time, this will help your freight brokerage to develop a reputation as a leader in your chosen market.

Establish Alliances – In such a competitive industry, putting down roots in a specific segment can be challenging. Linking up with other professionals who are also related to the industry (but not direct competitors) can help. One example is you can find other professionals through the TIA.

Promote Your Specialty – Once you’ve identified and begun conquering your particular niche, make sure your marketing efforts are aligned accordingly.

Invest Wisely – Lastly, you cannot expect to be successful, unless you’re maximizing your firm’s cash flow. If this area still isn’t your strong point, freight broker factoring might be an option to consider.

The freight brokerage industry can be fiercely competitive. While it may seem like a good idea to be open to all areas of business, taking on too much could potentially harm your company in the long run. Focusing on a specific niche market, on the other hand, can really help your firm stand out. The tips provided above should help you identify what areas to focus on for optimum results.

Want more industry tips and tricks? Check out our Freight Broker Blog.

Small Business Factoring

Small Business Social Media 101: How to Start Using Social Media

Social media is revolutionizing our world, not only in the way we connect with others but also how businesses market. With 74% of internet users using social media, small businesses can’t ignore that a large part of their audience are active on social networking sites. This audience is filled with current customers, potential customers, and even potential brand ambassadors.

So how can your small business utilize social media to build relationships and ultimately generate sales?

You can’t just start by posting on Facebook or sending out a tweet. You need to approach your social media marketing with purpose.

Identify Your Goals

Why does your company want to be on social media?

Think about your business and what makes sense for your customers. If you run an e-commerce site, then maybe your goal is to drive people to the website to purchase goods. If you are a B2B company, maybe your goal is to build brand awareness or thought leadership in your industry.

Here are some ideas when determining your goals:

  • Build thought leadership
  • Establish brand awareness
  • Drive sales
  • Create relationships with customers
  • Increase website traffic

Once you have your goals identified, write them down. You will want to refer to them as you further develop your social strategy.

Research Your Intended Audience

Each social media platform has a different audience that they cater to. While many individuals and businesses may be on multiple platforms, you need to find where your audience is and engage with them there.

 

Social Media Audience Demographics

This chart is just a snapshot of the social media platforms available to your business. Continue to do research on what platform(s) is best for your small business.

Gain an Audience

Once you have identified the right social media channels for your business, it’s time to build your social audience. You want to find the right people to engage with your content so that ultimately you can fulfill your goals.

  • Invite your customers using email or even giveaways in your brick and mortar store. When we first created our Facebook page, we had giveaways in exchange for likes at a trade show. Get creative.
  • Run Facebook advertisements to get your pre-determined audience to “like” your Facebook page. A little money can go a long way when it comes to Facebook advertising.
  • Use relevant hashtags on Instagram and Twitter to create buzz about your page and content.
  • Use tools like Klout and Follerwonk to determine industry leaders. Follow these users and engage with them on their social platforms. You can also see who follows them, and they might be someone of interest to you too.
  • As you begin to engage with others on social media, you will begin to grow your following. Now that you have followers, you can begin to reach your social media goals.

The next post in this series will highlight how to create killer content to fill your social media pages.

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Freight Broker

Get Ahead with Your Carriers: 5 Freight Broker Software Products

Utilizing software product can play a big role in the success of a freight brokerage for a number of reasons. First, it can help streamline operations. It can also dramatically improve efficiency and productivity levels. Finally, it’s one of the most effective ways to maintain compliance at all times. The problem is not all freight broker software products are created equal. To help making your selection a little bit easier, here are few of the more popular options, in no particular order.

Tailwind Transportation Software – The Tailwind product is great for freight broker companies that handle a variety of load types, including local, flat bed, intermodal, and long haul loads. It includes multiple load boards, accounting functionality, customizable quotes and is cloud-based and paperless. The company offers free demos so you can see how the product works prior to purchasing.

Ascend TMS – With their FREE TMS, AscendTMS manages loads, financials, document management and much more. If you need to pinpoint your carriers within your TMS, the AscendTMS tracker allows you to see where your drivers are located using their cell phone’s GPS. Also with this integration, carriers can send a text message with the status of the load, allowing you to keep tabs on the load from pickup to drop off. With AscendTMS, you also have the ability to post to 52 load boards, so your loads have the best chance of getting picked up. Learn more about AscendTMS’ features, here.

McLeod PowerBroker Software – This product is extremely popular among many large freight brokers because it is incredibly robust and feature-rich. It offers a fully integrated freight brokerage operations management system and a complete accounting software solution all in one package, from one company. Furthermore, the company also offers mobile applications so freight can be managed from anywhere.

Aljex– Aljex is a cloud based TMS with products for brokerages, carriers and intermodals. For freight brokers, they provide daily support, giving you the help you need when you need it. Their support is unlimited, allowing you to best use their robust system for all of your needs. From document imaging to posting to load boards, Aljex has many features available to users. You can even request a free demo of the product before you purchase.

3PLSystems, Inc. – The 3PL product branded as “BrokerWare™ Transportation Management System” is designed to operate freight brokerage from A to Z utilizing a wide variety of unique and highly-effective features. These include such options as least cost routing, sales portal, customer portal, and a bi-directional accounting integration. They’re also known for their user friendly interface. The company offers a number of demo videos as well as the option request a live demonstration.

When it comes to choosing the right freight broker software, the options are many. The five listed above should at least give you a decent starting point to help you narrow your selections and choose the ideal product for your business needs.

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Government Contractor

Exposing the Myths of Small Business Government Contracting

Did you know that the U.S. government actually has a goal to award nearly one-quarter of its prime contracts to small businesses? Furthermore, Congress approves over $1 trillion in spending just about every year. Though this is great news, a good number of small businesses are still hesitant to get involved. Much of the resistance is due to a number of myths and misconceptions that are still being perpetuated. If you’re wondering how to get government contracts for your small business, here are some of these common misbeliefs and the actual truth behind each of them.

Myth: My Business is Too Small to be Competitive…

Truth: As mentioned above, the U.S. government sets aside a certain amount of money each year to specifically be spent on contracts with small businesses. That means for many contracts, larger organizations simply don’t qualify. When we take size out of the equation, the opportunities become much more attainable. (You can learn more about the various programs for small businesses here.)

Myth: The Lower Bidder Always Wins…

Truth: Sure, there will be times when another candidate is chosen based on the lowest price, but this is actually more of an exception than a rule. In fact, the Federal Government as well as state agencies have the right to award government contracts to whichever candidate they feel is best suited, regardless of the actual bid amount. Be competitive but confident in your company’s ability to provide quality goods or services, and you’ll have a very good chance of winning.

Myth: It Takes Forever to Get Paid…

Truth: Despite the horror stories you may have heard about on the news or read about in the paper, most government contracts are paid in a very timely manner. In fact, the average turnaround for remittance of monies owed is around 30 days, sometimes even less. Additionally, there are other options available to you when time is of the essence. For instance, government contract factoring allows you to collect what’s rightfully yours upfront without the hassle of waiting.

Myth: I’ll Spend a lot of Money and Time and May Not Even Win…

Truth: While government contracting does involve an investment of time, money and resources, the outcome isn’t nearly as bleak as you may think. In fact, a recent report by American Express OPEN found that small businesses seeking a government contract for three years or less were awarded their first contract in just one year and after only three unsuccessful bids. The old adage that “you can’t win them all” can be applied here, as with any other business dealing, but success is certainly not impossible.

Myth: It’s Way Too Complicated…

Truth: While there’s definitely a learning curve when it comes to understanding how to get government contracts, working with Federal or state agencies is really not all that different from doing business with other large organizations. It may take a bit of trial and error, but getting the process down to a science isn’t nearly as difficult as one might think. These tips should help cut down on the trial and error:

Tips to Writing a Flawless Government Proposal
Government Contracting- Rules You Need to Know
How to Bid for a Government Contract…and WIN
The Secret to Getting the Right Government Contract

If you’ve considered the possibility of bidding on a government contract but were hesitant due to one or more of the above misconceptions, the truths exposed above should help you make a more informed decision.

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Small Business Tax Tips

Small Business Owners: Pay Attention to These Tax Tips

It’s that time of year again – tax season. As a small business owner, there are a number of unique considerations that you must account for while preparing to file. To make things a little easier, we’ve pulled together some best practices and small business tax preparation tips below.

First you need to gather the appropriate documentation reports and transaction lists. It’s always wise to keep close track of all expenses incurred throughout the year so that come tax time gathering the information you need won’t be a time-consuming hassle. This can be done a number of ways, whether it’s in a spreadsheet or within a software program. The more you keep track of, the more you can claim as deductions.
The IRS determines what items can and cannot be deducted for your small business taxes. These may include, but are not limited to:

  • Home Office – If you work primarily out of your home, you may be able to claim some or all of the area in which you conduct your business activities. Keep in mind, however, that in order to qualify as a small business deduction, the space you’re claiming must be devoted solely to your business. To determine the percentage you are allowed to claim, measure your office area and divide the results by the total square footage of your home.
  • Office Supplies and Furniture – Many of the supplies that you use in the operation of your small business can be deducted as an expense on your taxes. Furniture is a bit trickier, as there is depreciation to take into consideration. A qualified tax professional can explain your options and help you determine which, if any, make sense for your business.
  • Mileage – The distance you travel in the course of conducting business transactions may be deductible, along with other local travel-related expenses, such as tolls. Again, this can become a bit tricky, as it ultimately depends on your starting point and other criteria. For example, if your office is located in your home, you can start tracking mileage right from there. If your office is located elsewhere, you can only claim the mileage you travel from that starting point to your destinations.
  • Business Travel Expenses – The money you spend while traveling for business purposes, such as paying for a hotel room, airfare and renting a vehicle can all be deducted on your small business taxes provided you have proper documentation. Additionally, a portion (50%) of your meal costs while traveling may also be deductible.
  • Insurance Premiums – The price of small business insurance premiums might be deductible if you are self-employed. Again, sitting down with a tax advisor is recommended to ensure compliance, and that you are availing yourself of all the deductions that you are entitled to.

Next, in order to file correctly with the government, you will need to make sure you complete and file the correct forms. Otherwise, you could end up delaying the process or missing out on available deductions. The type of form you need depends mainly on what you’re claiming as well as the type of business you own. For example, sole proprietors must attach a Schedule C to their personal income tax returns. For LLC and incorporations, there is additional paperwork required and forms must be filed separately from personal taxes.

Finally, you’ll need to pay careful attention to the filing deadlines for specific forms. A few of the dates to be aware of for small business tax filings are as follows:

  • Schedule C must be turned in by the typical April 15th deadline.
  • Form 1120 must be filed by the 15th day of the third month, which is typically March 15. You can’t include this with your personal income tax forms.

For more information on how to do your taxes as a small business, check out these instructional videos from the IRS or schedule an appointment with a tax professional that specializes in small business taxes.

Payroll Funding

Recruiting Strategies to Catch the Millennials

Staying up-to-date on the latest recruiting strategies can be tough, particularly when it comes to attracting quality candidates from the millennial generation. The reason it’s so challenging is because individuals from this demographic are markedly different from previous generations. Before you find yourself frustrated and ready to throw in the towel, let’s take a look at some creative recruiting resources staffing agencies can employ to help win over Millennials.

Understand what motivates them.

Unlike Baby Boomers and Gen Xers, Millennials have a completely unique set of desires and needs when it comes to their careers. For instance, younger workers place a much stronger emphasis on things like flexibility, work/life balance and growth opportunity than traditional motivating factors, like salary. Understanding what these workers are looking for can help you position your openings to make them more attractive.

Use social media.

The Millennial generation uses social media for much more than just keeping up with friends and family. They also turn to these online networking sites to connect with brands, make purchasing decisions and – yes – even look for work. If you want to reach candidates from this younger group, you have to meet them where they are, so be sure to incorporate social media into your recruiting strategies.

Create a mobile friendly site.

These days it seems just about everyone has a smartphone or other type of handheld device. This is especially true for Millennials, who are referred to as the first digital natives since they were born and raised during a time when the internet and things like cloud technology were the norm. In terms of staffing, some 1 billion job searches are conducted using a mobile device each and every month. Leverage this by ensuring that your recruiting site is mobile-friendly and can be easily accessed and navigated using any device.

Make culture a top priority.

Candidates from the younger generation want to work for companies that have invested in developing and fostering cultures that value people, not just the bottom line. That’s why employer branding is so important during the recruiting process. Staffing professionals must find a way to demonstrate and effectively “sell” the overall vibe and culture of the company if they want to win over Millennials.

Provide work that matters.

Another key differentiator of the millennial generation is how strongly they feel about making a difference. This applies both to the impact they can potentially make with their employer as well as in the world around them. For this reason, recruiting strategies must involve clearly defining and effectively communicating the role being offered and how it factors in with the big picture.

Be competitive.

Last but not least, if you want to attract and win over the hearts and minds of millennial workers, you must remain at peak performance and in sound financial shape. If payroll funding and cash flow issues are holding you back from successfully reaching qualified candidates, funding through staffing factoring might be just the solution. This will allow you to focus on getting the right people instead of worrying about how to keep them.

With Millennials now occupying more than 50% of today’s workforce, figuring out the best way to reach, engage and appeal to them is more important than ever. By incorporating the above best practices into your overall recruiting strategy, you’ll have a much better chance of landing the types of quality younger candidates that will help drive the ongoing success of your business.

For more Staffing Tips and industry news, ‘like’ us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for daily updates.

Hands with money, taxes

Tax Tips for Staffing Agencies

With the new year comes concerns about staffing news and about correctly filing staffing taxes for your temporary staffing agency. Tax surprises are rarely good. Whether you have filed before or your agency is new within the last year, getting through tax season with accurate and acceptable payroll and tax records are imperative to the success of your business.

Know Your Company’s Tax Status

Although it depends somewhat on your location, most states consider staffing or temporary agencies to be the full employers of temporary employees. This designation requires that your business has a state tax identification number as well as an EIN from the federal tax administration. Double-check with your tax attorney or accountant for the classification of your company before you begin the tax process.

If your agency is, in fact, the employer of temporary employees, you may also find yourself subjected to paying employment taxes. These include temp agency payroll taxes, Medicare, Social Security and federal unemployment taxes and federal income tax withholding.

Completing all of these forms and filings can make your staffing taxes much more complicated than you had originally envisioned. For that reason, consider these tips to help you complete your tax process:

1. Understand Your Payroll Taxes

Your staffing agency is subject to taxation at both the federal and state level, and you are responsible for collecting unemployment taxes from your employees. Although it may be tempting to label your employees as “independent contractors,” the facts that you have legally provided these individuals with their set hours of employment, that you have a continuing working relationship with them and that you are paying them with a set payment method all indicate that they are business employees.

When companies pay your agency to employ your temporary workers, you are responsible for collecting payroll taxes from the pay that is passed on to those workers. The amounts of money that change hands should be clearly spelled out in the contract you make with the hiring companies, as well as with your employees.

2. Calculate the Withholding Amount from Employees’ W-4 Forms

Federal law mandates that you determine the amount withheld from each employee via the information provided by the employee on his or her IRS Form W-4.

With each wage payment that you make to the employee, you are required to withhold an amount. This number is likely different for each employee, depending on his or her earned wages and claimed exemptions. Each wage payment is considered a separate taxable event and must be treated as such.

Use the standard tables provided by the IRS to determine the amount withheld for each of your employees. This amount is based on:

  • The size of each wage payment
  • The frequency of payroll payments
  • The employee’s current marital status
  • The employee’s claimed withholding exemptions as filed on the W-4 form

The W-4 forms are only for you and your company to determine proper exemptions and withholdings as you are calculating your payroll taxes. You do not need to file them with the government or the IRS unless there is a discrepancy in information.

The total amount that you withhold should approximate each employee’s year-end tax liability. If you do not have a completed W-4 for an employee, treat that person’s withholdings as being single with no exemptions.

3. Provide a W-2 to Each Employee

As a company, you are required to withhold the proper amounts from your employees’ pay and to deposit those amounts with the appropriate tax agencies. These withholdings will include federal and state taxes, Medicare and Social Security taxes and federal and state unemployment taxes. In order to complete these requirements, you must provide all of your employees with proper W-2 and 1099 reports that thoroughly explain their yearly compensation and withholding amounts.

All employees must receive a W-2 by January 31 of the year following the employment year. Those who do maintain an independent contractor status and earned more than 600 dollars in compensation should receive a 1099 instead.

4. File and Pay Federal and State Taxes on Time

You can avoid tax penalties by paying your federal and state taxes on time. Your federal tax deposit must be made electronically through one of these methods:

  • The Treasury Department’s free Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS)
  • A trusted third party, such as a payroll service or tax professional
  • A financial institution that can initiate an ACH Credit payment

Many states now also require your deposits to be made electronically. Consult your state agencies for more information.

All deposits must be made on time. If your due date falls on a Saturday, Sunday or national legal holiday, you have until the close of the next business day to complete your deposit.

5. Maintain Proper Records

Once you have successfully distributed all your W-2 and 1099 forms to your employees and independent contractors, you must make sure that you have proper records that explain the payroll taxes that you paid for the year. Per the federal requirements, keep all records for at least four years before destroying them. Check your state record-keeping requirements as well.

Should the IRS ever question your payroll or business, these records must be kept for examination. Make sure that you have:

  • The names, addresses and Social Security numbers for every employee
  • The period of employment and compensation for each employee
  • The total amounts of pay given to each employee
  • The amounts of each payment kept as taxable wages
  • Complete copies of each employee’s W-4 form
  • All dates and records for each tax deposit made by your company
  • Thorough copies of all tax returns filed
  • Any and all W-2 forms that were undeliverable to past employees

All of these records must be kept in an orderly fashion to be immediately examined by an IRS official if requested.

For more information about taxes and for staffing news, follow Triumph Business Capital on Facebook, Google+ or Twitter.