There was a time, when companies wanted to generate more cash, they would increase sales or borrow from the bank. The mailing operation, although vital for invoicing and efficient customer communication, was always just a cost center. Now when revenue growth is difficult, if not impossible, and obtaining a loan may be even harder, companies are searching for ways to generate cash.

There is no better time than now for companies to look internally for cash generation through cost savings. Why not make the mailing operation part of the solution?

There are three ways that the mailing operation can help improve company cash flow.
· Converting mail from hard copy to electronic format ââ¬â¬Å"> direct cost reduction
· Reducing days sales outstanding ââ¬â¬Å"> reduced working capital
· Increasing cross selling through free advertising ââ¬â¬Å"> generating new sales

1. Reduce your costs by more than 50% by delivering documents securely via email.
Current paper based mail processing is costly and postage rates are on the rise. Many companies have put programs in place that encourage their customers to receive documents electronically, but most implementations have not met the desired expectations. When companies ask a customer to receive documents electronically, typically what they mean is ââ¬Å"come to my website and pick it up.ââ¬â❠This cumbersome method (often 8+ clicks to find the document) does not favor human nature, which tends towards simplicity. These PULL systems (pull you to a website) tend to achieve a 3% per year customer adoption, leveling off at 10-15% of customers.

The alternative approach is to PUSH the document directly to the recipient's email inbox where they can open it as an encrypted attachment. With this approach, adoption often starts at between 10-20% the first year, rising to over 50% within 3-4 years. For example:
   *A large insurance company reduced policy mailing costs by 88%.
   *A water company reduced billing costs by 85%.
   *An electric utility had a 19% adoption rate among customers within four months of going live.

2. Improve cash flow by reducing days sales outstanding (DSOs) by 15 to 80%.

Cash is king and faster payment means reduced working capital. Reduced working capital leads to lower interest expenses and increased profits, allowing money to be invested in the business. So, how can the mailing operation help speed up payments? Processing the mail faster or sending it by express delivery may not be feasible or cost effective, but if customers opt to receive their mail electronically, they will get their invoice one or two days faster. Faster delivery means faster payment. In addition, if the customer can authorize payment directly from the electronic bill, rather than having to go to a website to pay, payments are made sooner.

Companies taking this approach of PUSHing out their bills, using secure eDocument Delivery and Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment (EBPP), have seen their days sales outstanding drop by 15 to 80%. For example:
   *A water company reduced DSOs from 45 to 9 days.
   *An electric utility reduced DSOs by 18%.

3. Generate new sales and drive web traffic from existing customers ââ¬â¬Å" get more than a 10% click-through rate to your website and cross sell other products and services.

When customers opt to receive their mail electronically, it provides the mailer with a wide range of opportunities to promote other products and services and/or drive traffic to their website. The electronically delivered message can be a complement to your website. By effectively using a documentââ¬â¢s real estate and targeted business rules, you can pinpoint marketing messages every time you send a message. This transpromotional (combining advertising with the transactional document) approach maximizes customer communications, ensuring the right message reaches each client - stimulating new sales. For example, one cable company had a 12% click-through rate on their monthly statements.

While this may all sound like it is too good to be true, PUSH eDocument Delivery systems are designed to model the world of hard copy mail. With little to no changes to a companyââ¬â¢s IT system, a PUSH secure eDocument Delivery and EBPP system provides a significant return on investment ââ¬â¬Å" it can be implemented in 2-4 months and pay for itself within 6-12 months.
So, what are you waiting for?

Eagle Consulting, LLC dba The RHRosen Group
Rich Rosen is the Managing Member of The RH Rosen Group, founded to provide cost saving products and solutions to medium and large mailers. The RH Rosen Group helps mailers reduce mail print costs through mail flow optimization and the successful transition from hard copy mail to secure electronic document delivery and is an authorized reseller for Striata. Rich has over 30 years experience in the mailing industry, having worked at several of the major industry players, and has engineering degrees from Brown University and an MBA from Columbia University. Contact him at or 203-434-2739.