Collections have always been one of the most critical processes in the order-to-cash space. However, with the exponential growth in the number of customers and complexities in business scenarios, it’s becoming more and more challenging. Traditionally, the primary role of a collector was limited to just collaborating with the customer. The collections landscape today, however, calls for a lot more – from negotiations around payment plans to capturing pre-deductions to dealing with complex parent-child scenarios to name a few. In this strenuous environment, a collector needs to upskill in order to survive and collect faster. Here is a quick guide on what qualities collections teams should look forward to while hiring, and the factors aspiring collectors should focus on to upskill.
The foremost attribute you should have as a collector is critical thinking. You should be able to solve problems through rational thinking and evidence-based knowledge.
Critical thinking is important because it helps individuals and teams diagnose problems more effectively and identify possible solutions that aren’t obvious at first. Developing this kind of thinking requires a lot of scientific reasoning and analysis.
To develop a knack for critical thinking, one should be able to:
In the world of collections, the customer is the pivot around which the entire operations revolve. So beyond critical thinking, one should always strive towards a customer-oriented approach. Being up-to-date with market trends could serve as an important step for fine-tuning strategies and tailoring a customer-centric collections strategy.
Change management is a systematic approach to dealing with the transition or transformation of an organization’s goals, processes, or technologies. The purpose of change management is to implement strategies for effecting change, controlling, and helping people to adapt to change.
“One of the attributes not only analysts but all employees need to have is being able to adapt to change.”
To be able to keep up with the fast-changing technologies and operational models, you should:
With the advent of new technologies, collection operations have become less labor-intensive and take up very limited resources. The influx of digital technologies and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) tools has liberated collection technology in new ways that benefit both customers and clients. Some of the biggest collections tools and techniques include:
The next wave of collection technology includes Artificial Intelligence (AI). There is a major shift forthcoming in the method of collection operations that can significantly reduce time and manual labor.
Collections overall is a very sensitive job. The foremost concern of any collector should be to provide a wholesome customer experience. Dealing with customers on a day-to-day basis can be very tedious, collectors have to possess the ability to understand the pain point of the customer and put themselves in the shoes of the customer. These skills cannot be developed without patience and dedicated effort.
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