The debt collection industry functions much differently than it used to. A lot of this has to do with the introduction of automation and self-service technology. Over the course of just a few years, these advancements have made it possible to reduce the amount of time spent on the tasks that were once monotonous and labor-intensive. In some cases, those tasks are able to be eliminated altogether all while improving the likelihood of receiving the payment that you’re owed.
Many view this as a win for all parties involved. Companies with past due balances can take advantage of online tools and self-service options that allow them to address their balance as their schedule allows. Those working within collections get to save the energy that would otherwise be expended trying to set up payments. The businesses that work with collection agencies receive their money more quickly.
In this post, we will discuss the changes that you can expect within collections moving forward as a result of these improvements and advancements in collections technology.
Firms Will Begin To Vary Their Techniques
As it stands today, larger collection firms are taking measures to become more resourceful in their approach to working with debtors. They have been actively taking steps to automate a large portion of the collections process. This is a smart move, as automation technology saves both time and money in the long run. However, it can be costly to get up and running.
The time and money saved through automation has allowed larger firms to tackle issues like debtor compliance. It also gives them the leeway to work on issues that many agencies couldn’t afford to devote resources to in the past, such as improving overall satisfaction with the collections process among debtors. Although these changes are positive, they will likely make it difficult for smaller firms to remain competitive.
If you’re a business owner looking to place your overdue accounts, it’s a good idea to consider what kind of technology and techniques your agency uses in their collections process. In doing so, you’re ensuring that the collections process goes as smoothly as possible for yourself, your agency, and in many cases debtors as well. In some cases, the technology may increase debtor compliance, while in other cases more traditional means may be a more effective collections method.
Self-Service Technology Increases Overall Compliance
Debtors that are more than 90 days past due on their balance are statistically less likely to cooperate with accepting phone calls from collections agencies. Self-service technology provides simple options that work to increase compliance, and that makes it easier to reach these individuals.
Automation and self-service technology can be combined to make the collection efforts more effective as a whole. In addition to automated phone calls, which cost less than 5% of traditional phone calls, automation can also be used to send emails.
Automated emails further increase the likelihood of debtors cooperating. This is for a few reasons, the main one being that it allows agencies to contact those who are avoiding phone calls pertaining to their debt. When businesses are screening their phone calls to avoid collection attempts, it can be hard to inform them of their payment options. It often leads to an ongoing “cat and mouse” cycle that can be difficult and costly to resolve.
An automated email is less intimidating than a phone call. Debtors are more likely to open an email than they are to take a phone call about the debt that they owe. Through the use of automated emails, you can display the steps for setting up self-service payments without having to worry about keeping a debtor on the line long enough to engage in a conversation.
If You’re Owed Money by Another Business
If you own a business and are tired of having to waste your resources on tracking down overdue payments from other companies, it’s almost certainly time to hire a commercial collections agency. Choosing the right company is a big part of the process as well. As we mentioned earlier, investing in a company that makes use of these technologies or other traditional techniques might be a good idea.
Consider your clients and their debts alongside your previous experiences attempting to collect. Compare that with the collection methods and style of the agency that you’re considering, and see if you think it would be the best fit. Unsure? Simply reach out to a collections agency you’re interested in and discuss the different methods and options available. Many agencies offer a variety of specialized or tailored services that can help you collect on outstanding debts that might otherwise go unpaid.
For commercial collections and other inquiries, Alexander, Miller & Associates is happy to be of service. With traditional debt collection techniques, private investigations, and a long list of successful, high value collections, we’ve been working to collect your debts for years. If you’re looking to collect an outstanding commercial debt or consulting on debt collections, give us a call! Don’t let your debts go unpaid.