Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a credit interchange?
- A group of companies that join together to share information on mutual customers. Some interchanges are regional, some national, and most are industry-specific.
- The most important resource for effective credit management.
- The trend of the future in credit responding.
How does the GAIN credit interchange work?
- Members regularly supply A/R and other credit experience to the interchange database via Excel or a secure FTP site.
- The managing company compiles all the data and generates credit reports.
- The reports are available to members, in the case of GAIN, on-line. They can be downloaded and printed or viewed on-line.
- Most groups hold regularly scheduled meetings to review their customer's accounts and share credit educational experiences. GAIN holds one Credit Education Conference per year in various cities throughout the United States. Committees meet via conference calls and there are educational webinars offered almost every month.
Why should I join GAIN?
- Valuable information. Credit interchanges provide more valuable information than generic reports. You see exactly how the customer pays creditors in your industry, not how he pays the rent, phone bill, cleaning service, etc. GAIN credit reports show how member customers pay other members in the giftware industry.
- Competitive edge. The members own the information, giving them a competitive edge over non-members who do not have access.
- Up-to-date. Information is up-to-date, not months-old in the case of generic reporting agencies.
Why would I want to share any information about my customers with my competitors?
- That is a very good question. But, members of credit interchanges (which have been in existence for around 100 years) have found that sharing factual credit information actually helps everyone become more profitable. No member has a competitive edge over any other as information is shared equally.
- Amega's groups have developed various means of protecting members' important customer relationships. One group requires members to only provide information on 75% of their customers. This allows you to withhold data on these few companies with which you have special, confidential arrangement.
- Amega closely monitors member participation in the groups. If it is found that a company is abusing its membership (by taking information but not providing much), that member will lose all privileges and may be dismissed.
- It is not possible for any GAIN member to obtain a list of all of a competitor's accounts via the goAmega credit interchange system.
- Security features are designed by and for the benefit of the members.
Who has access to the information?
- The information in a group's database belongs to the members of the group.
- Access is via password and only current group members and the credit group management service's (ABC-Amega Inc.) Information Services personnel have access.
- ABC-Amega has no right to "sell" the information to anyone outside the group.
How is the information managed?
- ABC-Amega credit interchange members supply aged experience in one of two ways:
ABC-Amega personnel review all submissions for completeness of information and then upload to the database. As soon as the data is uploaded, it becomes available to members. We work hard to upload tapes within 24 hours of submission.
Urgent information (Flash Notice) is reviewed before placing it on the system to ensure that only factual information is included.
- Spreadsheet via e-mail.
- Upload to an FTP site.
How often do I have to share information?
- That depends on the group. But, the more current the information, the more useful. GAIN members provide their receivable data generally once a month.
What are other participation requirements?
- These are determined by the group. Generally, A/R data must be shared so many times per year; members must regularly provide urgent customer information; members must attend so many meetings within a given period (never more than one per year).
How do I access the database?
- In the case of the GAIN database, you must have Internet access. The GAIN database (www.goamega.com) is available 24 hours a day. You must have a Username and Password before entering the system.
What makes ABC-Amega's credit group management service better than all the others.
- Information is up-to-the-minute and easily accessible on-line.
- Member Flash Notices (urgent customer information) are available to the entire group within minutes of posting.
- Our Match/Merge function helps you gather complete information on an account even when multiple locations, a/k/a's or d/b/a's exist.
- ABC-Amega's groups can customize industry-related information (such as newsletters) and make them available on-line.
Bottom line: How much does it cost?
- GAIN offers a wide range of price options based on the number of credit groups you anticipate requiring in a year. s
- In typical groups, members pay an annual membership fee and a low per-report charge.