Best Practice #3: Quality Information

When it comes to a process as delicate as collecting money, nothing is going to make that process more frustrating than having inaccurate information in regards to it. Everyone would like the collection process to do its job as quickly and efficiently as possible, and that means not wasting any time on situations that weren’t necessary because someone passed along incorrect information. Precise and organized knowledge is the key to making the entire process as quick and simple as it can possibly be.

In order to achieve this organized information, you’ll need to have a specific system to both facilitate and organize it efficiently. Unorganized knowledge does nothing to lessen the complexity of the process. This system of organization will often have information divided into three sections of reports: management, monitoring, and risk management.

Management reports will deal with lists primarily, detailing past due clients that still need to be visited or contacted by a collections agent, or organizing past due clients by the length of their delinquency or the scale of their debt. These reports are critical for keeping track of clients in a way that determines which ones need to be dealt with first and foremost. For that reason management reports will usually be generated daily to keep the staff updated on what still needs to be done and how urgently those actions are required.

Monitoring reports deal more with portfolio than anything else. These reports will often determine delinquent portfolio based on many different factors, including ratios of efficiency on the collection process, delinquent portfolio by product, and summaries of portfolio by ageing and zone. Generated weekly or maybe even monthly, these reports will generally be used by upper management to address issues with delinquent portfolio performance.

Risk management reports exist to better predict the outcome of different factors in the process, and to allow oversight for the performance of the whole process. Information regarding the impact of collections over portfolio performance through tracking indicators, recovered balances, billing cycles and individual roll down ratios are all included in risk management reports.

Outside of these reports, you will also want to ensure that your basic client information is always accurate. When the time comes to act on a collection, you’ll need to be able to locate and contact the client as quickly and easily as possible, and that means staying up to date with all of their contact information on a fairly regular basis. The ease with which you can physically locate them and contact them is important.

Finally, you’ll want to invest in numerous internal committees and units to gather such information and act on it as necessary. All information needs management, and that can be most easily achieved through the formulation of internal methodological control units and internal past due committees. The greater level of management you have within the collection process, the more accurate and organized the information you need to use will be, and the more efficient and simple the whole process can become.

Laura Castello

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