3JM Company Inc.

Published Articles by David Balovich

Published in: Creditworthy News
Date: 7/15/99

Last month I wrote an article on the number of calls a collector should be able to make within the workday. The article was prompted by an ad I discovered for a collector to make 180 calls per shift. I asked for your responses and you did not fail me, thank you.

Amy writes "I wanted you to know how timely your article was, we have meetings every quarter to discuss this very topic." 

A. Pratt wrote "Your mixing functions - your example for a collection specialist was probably for someone to work through a specific number of files in a 4 hour WATS shift-making only outgoing calls. What do you think credit card companies do? The collector you use as an example also needs to have role further defined - is he/she working all accounts on the A/R?"

Richard Borts wrote "What immediately comes to mind is this position for consumer or commercial. Having done both there is a vast difference. The level of technology applied in large collection centers in terms of predictive dialers, behavior scores and neural nets and automated collection systems has increased productivity to the point where those numbers may not be out of line."

After receiving these replies I decided to contact the firm running the ad and find out something about the position. It was a collector for commercial and residential accounts handling both incoming and outgoing calls. In addition to collecting, reconciliation and customer service was part of the position and it did not appear they were using any new technology in their collections department.

The replies brought up another issue and that is the difference between collecting and due diligence. Collecting, I believe, is identifying the reason the customer is not paying as agreed and working with them to resolve the situation to the satisfaction of both parties. This takes time because the collector must have patience, understanding and problem solving abilities. Whereas due diligence requires nothing more then contacting the customer stating the amount, its past due and mail the payment today. Similar to telemarketing versus sales.

A collector needs time to know, understand and resolve the issue. That cannot be accomplished if you are monitoring quantity rather then quality. 

I wish you well

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