When you have several accounts to collect on, then it's time to call in some help by hiring a debt collection agency. However, all debt collection agencies aren't created equally. That's why it's important to have a plan for hiring the debt collection agency that helps you achieve your financial goals for your business.
Here are 15 tips to help you find the debt collection agency that's right for you:
1. Use Customer Service-Oriented Collectors
Collectors who are fully trained with customer service in mind can help you retrieve debt owed to your company without the worry of upsetting your customers. Customer service-oriented debt collectors know how to effectively de-escalate challenging conversations and are trained to handle a variety of situations all while staying in compliance with the law.
2. Choose a Debt Collection Agency That Aligns With Your Brand
It's not enough for a debt collection agency to offer the service you need. They should align with your brand, too. That means you'll want to choose a debt collection agency that prioritizes customer service, has a good reputation and possesses other qualities that align with what is important to your brand.
3. Inquire About the Agency's Quality Control Measures
Knowing how to hire a collection agency calls for knowing the measures it puts in place for managing its quality. That's why it's critical to inquire about the quality control measures that the debt collection agency follows. Ask about how they handle social media responses and verify their hiring practices. Do they do background checks on their collectors? Ask if they record calls for training and quality assurance.
4. Inquire About Web Portals
Find a debt collector that offers a web portal to help simplify handling multiple accounts. It makes it easy to upload bulk collection accounts at once and run reports to check on the status of your accounts.
5. Verify Insurance
Without the proper insurance, the collection agency you're looking to hire may leave your company liable should they break any laws. So, it's critical to verify the insurance coverage the company has and ensure your company is protected from possible litigation, should the debt collection agency violate any rules or laws.
6. Verify Where the Agency is Licensed to Do Business
You want to make sure the debt collection agency that you're working with can legally operate in the state where you need to collect on accounts. That's why it's important to verify the legitimacy of the debt collection agency you plan to hire. Start by verifying the company's state license.
Remember, each state has its own rules when it comes to the validity of a debt collection agency's operation. So, it's important to check the state's licensing procedure before you sign on with any debt collection agency.
7. Research the Agency's Specialities
Simply searching the web using the phrase "debt collection agency near me" can bring up tons of results. But it's important to do your research. That means if you're looking for a collection agency for small business collections, you'll want to find one that offers these services.
That's why it's also important to know what the debt collection agency specializes in so you can ensure you're getting the services you need. This calls for conducting some research and verifying the debt collection agencies' specialties. For instance, if you need a debt collection agency that specializes in collecting debts from small businesses, it's ideal to work with a company that has experience in your industry. Inquire about the debt collection agency's experience, read reviews and do your research to ensure they offer the services you need.
8. Look for Complaints, Google Reviews, and Facebook Reviews
Check the Better Business Bureau, Google reviews, Facebook reviews and review sites to determine if any complaints have been filed against the collection agency. You want to also check how they handled the complaint process. Remember, that a debt collection agency is representing your brand, so you want to make sure that they handle negative feedback and complaints in an appropriate manner.
9. Compare Fees
It's always important to compare the various rates and contingency fees of the debt collection agencies you're considering. Start by getting a quote from three or four debt collection agencies and review each cost. A professional debt collection agency will be transparent and provide you with all the information you need up front to make a decision on the best agency for your needs. Just remember that you get what you pay for. Sometimes a higher rate is better if you know the agency is going to collect more money and cause fewer complaints.
10. Get a Recommendation
Recommendations also come in handy when you're looking for a debt collection agency. If you work in a network of medical offices who have had success with a particular debt collector, consider asking your colleagues about their experience so you can gather various debt collection agencies to compare.
11. Make Sure They Are Up-to-Date With Collection Legislation
It's important that debt collection agencies stay current with new laws so they don't violate laws for collection practices and put your company at risk. Consider choosing a debt collection agency that's up-to-date with collection legislation.
12. Inquire About Skip Tracing
Skip tracing is technology debt collection agencies use to find individuals who owe debts and move without leaving a forwarding address. It's important to have this feature so you can have a better chance of getting back money that is owed to your company. Otherwise, you could be paying for a "wild goose chase" to find debtors.
13. Ask if They Use an Auto-Dialer
Improper use of an auto-dialer can put you at risk. If you auto-dial a cell phone without express written permission from customers, it can open you up to class action lawsuits. So, make sure you ask if the debt collection agency uses an auto-dialer.
14. Ask if They Give Feedback on Your Account
Collection agencies learn a lot about why customers don't pay. Ask if they give feedback on how to improve the credit granting and collection process to help you reduce bad debt.
15. Know Your Net-Back
Discuss the net-back or the portion of outstanding accounts your business can look forward to getting back. A reputable collection agency uses effective strategies that result in higher debt recovery for a higher net-back.
Tavelli Co., Inc. has over 37 years of unparalleled experience in the debt collection and receivables management industry. Our mission is to achieve the right balance between getting clients paid and being empathetic to debtor circumstances, through implementing innovative practices, hiring experienced people, and improving business decisions through analytics. We provide peace of mind to all involved by collecting money with no complaints. Tavelli Co., Inc. takes the time to carefully listen to your customers and share their feedback with you through meaningful data and transparent communication, so you have access to the information you need to make quality decisions and improve your processes in the future. Contact us today and let the debt collection experts at Tavelli Co., Inc. help you set your business up for success.
IMPORTANT: Information provided by Tavelli Co., Inc., any employees of Tavelli Co., Inc., or its subsidiaries is not intended as legal advice and may not be used as legal advice. It is not intended to be a full and exhaustive explanation of the law in any area, nor should it be used to replace the advice of your own legal counsel.