What is Days Sales Outstanding (DSO)? How to Calculate and Improve DSO?

Days sales outstanding is defined in several ways. However, the simplest way to understand DSO is the days a company takes to collect the payment after purchasing an order. The more limited the DSO, the quicker the organization gathers installment or pending payment from its clients – and the sooner it can utilize its money.

Working Capital Cycle, abbreviated as WCC, is a financial process used to observe a company’s time to convert its investment into revenue.

Along with Days Payable Outstanding (DPO) and Days Inventory Outstanding (DIO), DSO is a part of the Working Capital cycle (WCC).

You can calculate the working Capital Cycle by this formula:

Working Capital Cycle = DIO + DSO – DPO

Therefore, the WCC can be advanced – at the end of the day, diminished – by expanding DPO or decreasing DSO or DIO.

  • Days Sales Outstanding (DSO) is the average number of days it takes an organization to get payment for a purchase.
  • A high DSO number proposes that an organization is encountering delays in getting its payment. That can cause an income issue.
  • A low DSO shows that the organization is getting its installments rapidly or within the given time as the cash is returned to the business in the less possible time, so it leaves a significant impact.
  • As per accounting and financial rules, a DSO under 45 days is viewed as low.

How to Improve Days Sales Outstanding?

Plan Effective Days Sales Outstanding Targets to Achieve:

An organization ought to plan appropriate DSO targets and procedures that they need to accomplish.

There are numerous techniques used to make DSO targets attainable and viable. While setting up the DSO targets, ensure that your terms are as simple for the clients as they might at any point be.


Giving a few payment methods— for instance, debit cards and other electronic payment ways to see sales and clarifications — provides essential versatility.

To choose goals for achieving the desired DSO, companies need to ponder the typical for their industry, similarly to how long your company consistently needs to change over receivables into cash.

Upgrading the Collections Practices

Despite the fact that most customers pay according to the given timetable, organizations need to have a recorded commitment recovery system. This ensures that you understand what to do immediately (and put in as many resources as possible on the cycle.)

READ:  What is Contingent Consideration?

Perhaps the most widely recognized issue that organizations hear from the customer’s side is: “I never got the pay receipt.” “Can you resend the installment receipt to me?”

On this, representatives need to get off the phone, repeat the receipt, re-take a look at it, and email it out. Executing an endeavor content organization system, employees can give the receipt while the customer is on the phone, and the customer can pay the receipt immediately.

Managing Account Receivables: 

Close to the day’s end, managing your receivables is extremely basic. Anything you can do to simplify it can unmistakably influence your pay.

Account Receivable is one way that you can speed things up. Rather than having an employee make sales certify every company is charging or charging information and print the records, organizations can permit an automated system to manage everything for them by taking care of records through RPA-powered work processes.

Companies with automated AR can reduce their DSO within a few months. Moreover, their customers get installment solicitations faster. There’s likewise no compelling reason to worry about extra or copy charges.

Besides, such companies can get rid of the additional work. Unexpectedly, these companies can get their AR colleagues into other significant business matters.

Credit Risk Management:

The pay terms go indivisibly with the credit rehearses – which are likewise fundamental to consider. If the organization is unnecessarily lenient, it can confront some genuine monetary dangers and income issues. Yet, on the off chance that the company is excessively severe., it very well may be passing up expected income.

Right, when a company is evaluating its credit strategy, it needs to consider the following:

  • How do you mean to deal with each application (for instance, using an organization for a B2B credit check or referencing extra references from new customers)
  • What rules do customers have to meet to be supported for a credit?
  • Organization’s overall monetary dangers
  • Organizations need to identify whether credit system changes could grow their DSO rather than reduce it.

State Clear Payment Terms:

There are issues in the income, and payments or installments are made sluggish because of confounding installment terms. Be sure that they are indisputably and expressed.

READ:  What are Planning and Operational Variances for Labor?

According to the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, the DSO of an organization ought to be within 15-20 percent of the given installment terms. When the organization has inspected the sum, it is expected to reduce the DSO or Days Sales Outstanding. It would then be able to collect with the pay terms to guarantee they appropriately adjust.

The pay terms ought to be set out in an arrangement the customer embraces before anything or organizations are given. The payments terms should then be composed on each receipt, ideally with a due date.

To the extent installment terms are thought of, an organization needs to look at many different things than simply the period a client needs to pay.

Some different variables that organizations glance through while setting up pay terms are:

  • Early payment (for instance, a 1 or 2 percent markdown for paying inside 10 or 15 days)
  • The payment strategies.

(A decent choice for organizations is to embrace electronic installment techniques. Electronic pay decisions let pay done promptly, rather than believing that a check will come through the mailing station.)

  • Late pay penalties

Adjust the Invoicing methodologies

At the point when a company knows how it expects to lessen its DSO, it’ll need to contact its clients with new methodologies. It may mean reviving the receipt design to put the due date and favored pay method on the highest point of the installment receipt.

It is essential to send installment solicitations on schedule with the appropriate terms and cutoff times referenced. It guarantees that the client gets total data, and there is no problem with the installment receipt cutoff time.

Here are a few things to follow assuming organizations need to develop their invoicing systems further:

  • Send early pay updates.
  • Early pay advantages to clients.
  • Send pay solicitations as quickly as time permits.

Twofold check the installment solicitations before sending them to clients.

Increment of Visibility

Credit chiefs, monetary evaluators, and CFOs all have their influence meanwhile – and they all need constant information to make better decisions and choices.

If you need to enhance the visibility, pick an invoice that has not been paid yet. Then, consider looking significantly further into the high days sales outstanding to understand what could be improved.

READ:  Accounting for Government Grants IAS 20

Increasing visibility is very beneficial and vital for the organization.

Representatives of an organization need to know which customers are late in paying and whether there’s any relationship with your organization’s business models. Regardless of whether you’re, you’re doing anything inside to hold up the cycle.

How to Calculate days sales outstanding?

The formula for calculating days sales outstanding is:

DSO = (Ending Accounts Receivable / Credit Sales) x No. of Days

Accounts receivable is the absolute worth of AR or Accounts Receivables during a specific period. A few organizations will utilize the standard accounts receivable, while others might use the end debt claims balance.

The number of days is the total days in the pertinent period – which might be a month, a quarter, or a year.

Absolute credit deals incorporate deals made using a loan – as such, are expected to be paid on a future date – rather than cash deals delivered right away.

Let’s consider an example:

ABC Ltd. has sales of $30 million for the previous year, receivables at the year-end- were $5 million.

There are precisely two values that you’ll need to calculate the days sales outstanding.

The first value will be the ending accounts receivable for the period, which is $5 million.

The second value is the credit sales, and in our example, ABC Ltd. has credit sales of $30 million.

By applying the Days Sales Outstanding formula,

DSO = (Ending Accounts Receivable / Credit Sales) x No. of Days

DSO = (5/30) x 365

Hence, DSO = 61 Days


Days Sales Outstanding is the total period required to collect the payments from the customers after they’ve made the purchase. This is a financial process that every organization performs to better view things that should be improved. A low DSO or Days Sales Outstanding is always better than a high DSO.

As high DSO means that a company takes a longer time to get the payment from clients, it can result in severe cash flow problems. However, there will be no such issues if the DSO is low and the organization can run seamlessly.

Scroll to Top
Scroll to Top