Friday, 4 February 2011

Cambridge News – Business - Working Day feature

Cambridge News – Business - Working Day feature
Luisa Grey, Operations Director at Eazipay Ltd, a leading BACS approved
Direct Debit processing company based in Littleport near Ely.

5.30am. Because I’m the nicest wife in the world, I always get up with my husband who has to leave early to start his job as a builder.  As soon as he’s gone, however, it’s back to bed with a cup of tea.

7am. Up for good this time. As well as the children to sort out there are chickens to be fed and three dogs to walk before I leave for work.

8.30am. First job of the day for me and the other 14 staff is always checking the emails. These often number between three and four hundred and concern the Direct Debit transactions we undertook yesterday.  As you can imagine, attention to detail is critical and it’s vital we get it right first time.

10.30am. A look back over the December figures and we’ve had another record month with over £8.6 million collected and 300,000 transactions and amendments carried out. We usually crack open the champagne every time we process another million pounds, and I think a record might also be cause for some celebration bubbly.

11.00am. I recently became a Money Laundering Officer and one of my jobs is to notice any odd patterns such as an sudden increase or decrease in transactions through an account. There’s almost always an innocent explanation but I meet regularly with the big banks to go over any queries.

Noon. Early lunch (well, I’ve been up a long time) and a meeting with Real, my PR company. I’m very keen to make Eazipay better known and am trying to raise the firm’s profile.  We look at some ideas to help us achieve world domination.

1.00pm. Back to the office and straight into a marketing meeting to try and drum up more business. It’s amazing how many companies aren’t aware of the benefits of Direct Debit and don’t appreciate what it can do for them.

Businesses can save huge amounts in administration costs, time and bank fees and it also enables them to manage their cash flow more effectively, which is particularly important in these difficult times.

Customers like it too because there’s normally a Direct Debit discount and it’s more secure than cheques or cash.  And they have complete control over their money.

2.30pm. It’s an afternoon of meeting potential and existing clients and it’s time for the first appointment.

Although companies sometimes see the potential in Direct Debit payment collections, they often think it’s technically quite difficult to arrange. As a result, a lot of my work involves reassuring and educating possible clients. We offer a full Facilities Management Service and, if required, can also take responsibility for the credit control of unpaid Direct Debit requests.

3.30pm. We also provide guidance and training for new customers in all aspects of Direct Debits and my second visit is to a new client for a training review session. I tend to take some of my sales and support team with me as unless my customer’s staff fully understand the benefits and simplicity of Direct Debit, they won’t be able to sell it to their customers properly.

4.30pm. Final customer meeting is with a franchise operation.  We’ve already had a number of successes with companies such as Curves Health Clubs – whose many gyms in the UK now all use Eazipay for their Direct Debit payments – and one of our main plans for 2011 is to get more franchises on board. Whether you’re a franchisee or a franchise seller, having Direct Debit already in place makes the offer that much more attractive.

5.30pm. Back in the office and there’s just time for a quick look at our new online system, which we’re launching shortly.  Once it’s live, it’ll give clients the chance to upload BACS files and maintain their own client database, which will make their processes faster and costs lower.

6.00pm. Home for more chicken feeding and dog walking before attending a couple of networking meetings. I’m also on call one evening a week in case of any system errors.

10.00pm. Back home at last and ready for bed alongside a husband who’s been in bed for at least an hour.

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