April 24, 2018 – Have you ever been worried while trying to figure out the best approach for how to recover debt owed to you? Have you tried and failed? Imagine an artificially intelligent automated debt collection system – a simple yet effective method of tracing, chasing and alerting you and your payers without any stress input from you.
‘Am I Paid?’ (www.amipaid.com) automates alerts when the payments you are expecting are paid or when it is not paid into your bank account. Using advanced AI payment detection, which securely links directly with your bank account, the need for manual, time-consuming bank reconciliation is removed and makes it easier to maintain consistent communication, send invoices quickly and provide fast follow-up.
Accounts payable are on the front lines of not only keeping the business afloat, funded and trading, but also, more importantly, customer service. Get it wrong and relations with customers can quickly sour, making the demanding duty of pleasing and appeasing customers difficult throughout the whole business. With countless scenarios which may arise during a communications exchange, it is vital that staff be adaptable and equipped with a skill set to handle the complexity of keeping customers happy whilst bringing in what’s due.
As businesses move from people-centric debt collection to automated collection services, it is important to examine the relative benefits and see which human skills are still needed when making use of services such as ‘Am I Paid?’ in order to recover debt from an individual or business:
1. Patience and Empathy
Customers who fail to pay their debt are often going to be on the offensive, so patience is a necessary requirement. Typically debt collectors should allow customers to explain their circumstances for non-payment allowing them to speak before interrupting. Patience and a listening ear frequently result in better collections and relations. When this is accompanied or led by automated debt collection – customers find it hard to hold a grudge against an automated process which follows pre-set conditions.
2. Clear communication
Traditionally debt collectors face the challenge of being professional whilst delivering communications that the debtor will not necessarily like. By adding automated debt collection with SMS and email alerts, where additionally each alert can be pre-approved before sending each time, it provides a separation between people and automated processes.
Throughout the collections, process communication exchanges need to be accurate and organized at all times in order to remain professional and so the customer never has the opportunity question, casting doubt on the information being relayed. Automating as much as possible reduces the opportunity for human error.
One of the key skills in collecting money due is the ability to adapt to changing situations. One overdue debt may be different to the next, so agents need to be flexible enough to react to the information to hand in order to maximize collected debt. Good debt collection automation software recognizes this and provides tools for giving a final human check before an automated SMS or email is sent if it is deemed necessary.
5. Create win-win situations
Regardless of how irate, frustrated or unhappy a customer may be, debt collectors must always maintain a positive attitude. Using positive language creates confidence in finding a suitable solution for clients, encouraging them to stay loyal to the company, even after encountering issues.
Whilst automation can, without doubt, help you stay on top of debt and reduce the need for human involvement, it’s inevitable that there will be situations where a judgment call will need to be made. As we see more and more processes being automated by intelligent software it’s important to recognize that it takes skill and a complete understanding of a business to set up and monitor in order to recover a debt owed to you and keep customers happy.