What is The Accounts Receivable Turnover Formula?

If a company loses clients or suffers slow growth, it may be better off loosening its credit policy to improve sales, even though it might lead to a lower accounts receivable turnover ratio. The average accounts receivable turnover for companies in the United States is about 8.5 times per year. This means that the average company takes about 8.5 months to collect payments from its customers. The median accounts receivable turnover is about 7 times per year, which means that the company takes about 7 months to collect payments from its customers. There is a lot of variation in this ratio, with some companies reporting turnovers of more than 100 times per year and others reporting turnovers of less than 1 time per year.

an increase in a companys receivables turnover ratio typically means the company is:

If money is not coming in from customers as agreed and expected, cash flow can dry to a trickle. The accounts receivable turnover ratio tells a company how efficiently its collection process is. This is important because it directly correlates to how much cash a company may have on hand in addition to how much cash it may expect to receive in the short-term. By failing to monitor or manage its collection process, a company may fail to receive payments or be inefficiently overseeing its cash management process. On the other hand, having too conservative a credit policy may drive away potential customers. These customers may then do business with competitors who can offer and extend them the credit they need.

Step 2: Calculate your average accounts receivable

A bigger number can also point to better cash flow and a stronger balance sheet or income statement, balanced asset turnover and even stronger creditworthiness for your company. By comparison, LookeeLou Cable TV company delivers cable TV, internet and VoIP phone service to consumers. All customers are billed a month in advance of service delivery, thereby preventing any customer from receiving services without paying the bill.

What does an increase in receivable turnover ratio mean?

A high receivables turnover ratio can indicate that a company's collection of accounts receivable is efficient and that it has a high proportion of quality customers who pay their debts quickly. A high receivables turnover ratio might also indicate that a company operates on a cash basis.

In other words, its accounts receivables are better protected as service can be disconnected before further credit is extended to the customer. Delivering invoices in a more convenient format also increases customers’ likelihood of paying you faster, improving your collection efficiency. AR turnover ratio is also not especially helpful to businesses with a high degree of seasonality. Industries like manufacturing and construction typically have longer credit cycles (e.g., 90-day terms), which makes lower AR turnover ratios normal for companies in those sectors. It is important to compare your receivables turnover with the turnover of your competitors. Additionally, tracking the pattern of your turnover over time will help you determine your business’s performance.

Accounts Receivable (AR) Turnover Ratio Formula & Calculation

It measures how efficiently and quickly a company converts its account receivables into cash within a given accounting period. Making sure your company collects the money it is owed is beneficial for both internal and external financial engagements. So practicing diligence in accounts receivable revenues directly affects an organization’s bottom line. That’s because it may be due to an inadequate collection process, bad credit policies, or customers that are not financially viable or creditworthy. A low turnover ratio typically implies that the company should reassess its credit policies to ensure the timely collection of its receivables. However, if a company with a low ratio improves its collection process, it might lead to an influx of cash from collecting on old credit or receivables.

In this example, a company can better understand whether the processing of its credit sales are in line with competitors or whether they are lagging behind its competition. An asset turnover ratio measures the efficiency of a company’s use of its assets to generate revenue. The accounts receivables ratio, on the other hand, measures a company’s efficiency in collecting money owed to it by customers. The accounts receivable turnover describes the efficiency of a company in collecting payments. It is different from asset turnover, which describes how a company uses its assets to generate revenue. The receivables turnover is calculated by using the formula for the accounts receivable turnover ratio.

Accounts Receivables Turnover

The denominator of the accounts receivable turnover ratio is the average accounts receivable balance. This is usually calculated as the average between a company’s starting accounts receivable balance and ending accounts receivable balance. Finally, you’ll divide your net credit sales by your average accounts receivable for the same period. It means that it takes, on average, 29 days for the company to collect payment from its customers or clients.

However, it is important to understand that factors influencing the ratio such as inconsistent accounts receivable balances may accidently impact the calculation of the ratio. Once you know your accounts receivable turnover ratio, you can use it to determine how many days on average it takes customers to pay their invoices (for credit sales). Additionally, a low ratio can indicate that the company is extending its credit policy for too long.

For example, grocery stores typically have high turnover rates because they get almost instant payments from their customers. In such cash-heavy businesses, the AR turnover is not a good measure of how they are managed. Typically, organizations like to calculate the accounts receivable turnover ratio for the past 12 months. Therefore, the average customer takes approximately 51 days to pay their debt to the store. If Trinity Bikes Shop maintains a policy for payments made on credit, such as a 30-day policy, the receivable turnover in days calculated above would indicate that the average customer makes late payments. First, it enables companies to understand how quickly payments are collected so they can pay their own bills and strategically plan future investments.

an increase in a companys receivables turnover ratio typically means the company is:

Join the 50,000 accounts receivable professionals already getting our insights, best practices, and stories every month. She is passionate about telling compelling stories that drive real-world value for businesses and is a staunch supporter of the Oxford comma. Before joining Versapay, Nicole held various marketing roles in SaaS, financial services, and higher ed. At the other end of the list, the industries with the lowest ratios were financial services (0.34), technology (4.73), and consumer discretionary (4.8).


Collection challenges are often a result of inefficiencies in the accounts receivable (AR) process. Accounts receivable turnover ratio is an important metric for determining the effectiveness of your collection efforts so that you can make any necessary course corrections. The accounts receivables turnover and asset turnover are often considered to be one and the same. However, there are slight differences between these two terms that shouldn’t be mixed.

an increase in a companys receivables turnover ratio typically means the company is:

In financial modeling, the accounts receivable turnover ratio (or turnover days) is an important assumption for driving the balance sheet forecast. As you can see in the example below, the accounts receivable balance is driven by the assumption that revenue takes approximately 10 days to be received (on average). Therefore, revenue in each period is multiplied by 10 and divided by the number of days in the period to get the AR balance. Dr. Blanchard is a dentist who accepts insurance payments from a limited number of insurers, and cash payments from patients not covered by those insurers. His accounts receivable turnover ratio is 10, which means that the average accounts receivable are collected in 36.5 days. Basically, the receivable turnover reflects how good a company is at collecting payments.

Step 3: Divide your net credit sales by average accounts receivable

It can sometimes be seen in earnings management, where managers offer a very long credit policy to generate additional sales. Due to the time value of money principle, the longer a company takes to collect on its credit sales, the more money a company effectively loses, or the less valuable are the company’s sales. Therefore, a low or declining accounts receivable turnover ratio is considered detrimental to a company.

To do this, take your total sales made on credit and subtract any returns and sales allowances. You should be able to find this information on your income statement or balance sheet. Now for the final step, the net credit sales can be divided by the average accounts receivable to determine your company’s accounts receivable turnover.

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