Billing and Posting Clerks

Posting clerks, billing clerks and machine operators are called billing clerks. Their work is to develop bills, calculate charges and prepare them mail to customers. These clerks evaluate purchasing records and verify calculations to ensure most complicated bills are accurate.

Nature of Work
Billing clerks review purchase orders, hospital records, charge slips, and sales tickets to calculate the total amount due from customers. They need to take into consideration credit terms or special rates. A billing clerk working in a trucking company, for instance, needs to consult a rate book to decide shipping costs. A billing clerk working in a hospital has to contact an insurance company to decide what items to be reimburse.

In consulting, law, accounting, and other similar firms, billing clerks calculate their client fees based upon the time required to perform the service being purchased. They need to keep the track of the percentage of work completed, fees to charge, job type for the customer, and specified hours spent on a job. Once billing clerks reviewed necessary information, they calculate the charges using computers or calculators.

Subsequently, they prepare bills, itemized statements and invoices used for billing and record keeping purposes. In large organizations, billing clerks may prepare a bill comprising of the amount due, type and date of the service. In other firms, a billing clerk may prepare a more detailed codes and invoice for all services and goods provided. These clerks may list down the items sold, date of service or shipment, terms of credit, and doctor's or salesperson's identification.

The arrival of computer technology and specialized billing software facilitates billing clerks to prepare bills and calculate charges in one step. With the help of computer software, clerks enter handwritten data into computer to manipulate required information on labor, quantities, and rates to be charged.

Billing clerks verify the entry of information and correct errors before the computer prints the bill. Once the bills are printed, billing clerks assess them for accuracy. With the help of computer software, billing clerks send the bill electronically. Offices that are not automated, billing machine operators prepare the bill on a billing machine and send it to the customer.

Apart from producing invoices, billing clerks can be asked to deal with follow up questions from customers and resolve any errors or discrepancies. Finally, a billing clerk has to enter all the changes in the accounting records. Billing clerks have to carry out following records.


Work Environment
Generally, billing clerks are hired in an office environment; however, most of these clerks work at home. Usually, billing clerks work forty hours a week. Some billing clerks work part-time. Billing clerks have to use computers to execute their daily tasks. These workers have to sit for extended periods as a result they may experience muscle and eye strain, headaches, backaches, and repetitive motion injuries.

Educational Qualification
Candidates who wish to get into this field should have at least a high school diploma. However, some employers prefer candidates who completed college courses or degrees. Candidates holding a bachelor's degree get a good salary in this field. Employers seek candidates who are comfortable using computers, especially, billing software.

Generally, billing clerks receive on-the-job training from supervisors and senior workers. However, some classroom training may be required such as training in particular computer software used in a company. There are a number of community and career colleges offering certificate programs in computer billing software.

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