Remember that your terms and conditions / SLA protect both you and your client. It allows for an upfront expectation.

If there ever is a dispute, the terms and conditions / SLA will be the first point of call- so as an insurance policy, make sure that you are covered.

You will also likely find that once you have been in business, there are certain things which crop up from time to time- amend your terms to cater for these. Example: if you find that people pay late, make sure your terms deal with what happens in the event of late payment (interest? Perhaps you want to retain ownership in the product until paid for?)

Make sure that the terms are clear and easy to understand.

  1. Detailed description of your service/product offering;
  2. What your offering includes and what it excludes. If there is an
  3. Time periods applicable (if necessary). Be careful on this, you don’t want to land yourself under unnecessary pressure especially if you are procuring parts of your offering from somewhere/someone else.
  4. Price and any extras (taxes? transport costs? What if the order changes? What if your raw material goes up or the currency takes a dive?). You need to know your risks and your business well.
  5. Invoicing terms and whether a deposit is required;
  6. Limit your liability where possible;
  7. Any special conditions you need.
  8. Make sure that your terms comply with applicable laws. Wise to have them drafted by an attorney. Also make sure that your terms don’t conflict with each other!
  9. Aftersales: exchanges, returns or repairs- how these work and are dealt with.

The aim here is to limit your risks and simplify any future confusions which may prejudice you in getting paid.

Successful debt collection actually starts with successful implementation of your business’s internal working- right from the beginning of the engagement.