The Cash Flow Group, Inc

Consumer and Commercial Debt Collection Florida

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Fort Lauderdale / Miami, FL

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Successful Debt Collection

Friday, November 9th, 2018 | Florida commercial collection agency, Florida Debt Collection, The Cash Flow Group | No Comments

Tips for Successful Debt Collection by Phone and Email

What is one of the biggest mistakes you can make? People try to collect an unpaid debt while communicating in an unprofessional manner. Being in debt and collecting debt can both be stressful situations. There are many laws around debt communications.

Phone Calls

The phone is generally seen as the most effective and efficient way of collecting an unpaid debt. Some general rules to follow:
 

Be polite and professional.

No gum chewing, eating, or web surfing while calling.  Use please and thank you, and introduce yourself. One trick receptionists have used for years is to smile while on the phone.
 
Call at the right time of day. Some people work mornings, others don’t come into the office until the afternoon. By knowing when the debtor is available to talk on the phone, you can avoid playing phone tag. Ask the debtor what time they are generally available. Doing this can save a significant amount of time.
 
Take notes or record conversations.
If you are going to record a conversation, you must get permission first. But taking notes can be effective. By keeping a log of any agreements or issues, you can avoid repeating what you have already said. After the call, send an email summarizing the conversation and any commitments so there are no disagreements later.
 
Be careful about leaving messages.
It is very important that debt collectors never disclose private information. As a general rule when collecting from individuals, collectors should assume that any voicemail messages they leave will be heard by somebody other than the debtor.  If it is a business debt, full detail can be left on any business phone number and personal phone known to belong to a involved party.
 
Don’t blame or shame.
Having unpaid bills is stressful. It is not helpful to blame the debtor or imply that they have failed by not upholding their commitment to pay. Doing so will only make them upset and less willing to pay. Speak and find out why the debtor hasn’t paid their bills, and then try to work towards a solution to the problem. If they have a complaint about the product or service, find out why and try to resolve the complaint. If the customer doesn’t have the money at that time, ask them to prove this and have them suggest a solution. Forcing the debtor into a payment plan they know will default on will likely cause the debtor to be less interested in working with you.
 
Email
Although phone conversations are the preferred method for discussing unpaid debt, email also has an important role to play, especially when documents are being requested or sent, a paper trail is needed, or for quick follow ups and reminders.
 
If you can’t write, don’t.
Everybody knows their own skill set. If you are not a good writer, please do not write your own emails. Instead consider hiring an in-house or freelance copywriter to create a set of email templates for you that will help you communicate.
 
Be polite and professional.
Because tone of voice is so hard to determine in an email it’s especially important that you be polite and professional. Do not attempt to joke or be lighthearted about the situation. Keep your messages short and ensure they only emphasize the point you want. Shorter emails are more likely to be read in their entirety, and if you make the message you want to send to the recipient very clear they’ll be sure to get the point.
 
Being polite also includes responding to emails on time. If you want someone to respond to your emails, you must do the same for them.
 
Create a factual and short subject line. Your recipient will be far more likely to open the email if they know what it’s about.
 
Don’t send the message to people who don’t need to see it. Remember that any email communication can be used in a lawsuit if the debtor sues you for disclosing information to parties against regulation (especially in the case of consumer collections). Email communications are permanent, and the debtor will be able to find a copy of the message stored online with ease.
 
Communications are one of the tricky elements that sometimes makes it easier to hire a professional collection agency. If you’re having trouble finding the right way to talk to debtors, please give us a call.

The Cash Flow Group

Fort Lauderdale / Miami, FL

Toll Free: 800.226.2006

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The Cash Flow Group, Inc

3389 Sheridan Street

Suite 135

Hollywood, FL 33021

Email: info@thecashflowgroup.com

800.226.2006 Toll Free

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