Continuing to Utilize Credit Reports
Credit Reports have been a tool utilized by the professional collector in the Account Receivable Management Industry for years. Today there are three major credit bureaus and each organizes data about consumer credit history and public records. Although the bureaus have been around for a while, the advent of the internet made credit reporting easy. With the use of the internet, requesting of credit reports became faster and more commonplace.
By the 1990’s, legislation (Fair Credit Reporting Act) required that lenders report all credit activities (on-time payments, default, write-offs, account openings and closures and the all-important available credit, etc.) for private persons and corporations.
Credit Reports provide the professional collector with the most up-to-date demographic and financial information about the consumer’s behavior. Credit Reports are divided into six main sections: identifying information (name, address, birth date and Social Security Number), employment, consumer statement, account information, public records and inquiries. Credit reports are updated with new information from creditors approximately every 30 days, to reflect current account balances and payment activity.
Collector’s Credit bureau analysis and skip-tracing applications are critical to the professional success and are extremely effective tools when used together. Credit Bureau information reveals a consumer’s financial blue print and is the perfect complement to the skip-trace process. As we review a consumer’s credit history we see the movement needed to plug in skip-tracing. Where does the bank exist? What about property history? As the professional collector knows, it’s important to establish a profile “snapshot” of the consumer quickly as the collection effort goes forward.
The collector’s role in collecting debt has evolved. The relationship between the collector and consumer is now more of a sales dynamic. Customer service tools serve us better in the long run when communicating with consumers. Gone are the days of the “Hard” collector as we have seen the evolution of both Federal Laws surrounding this approach and a more savvy consumer due to greater online resources.
In recent years, the use of credit reports and the information contained within them has evolved to consolidated data sets or models such as consumer “scores” and “credit attributes”. Our industry is utilizing the new data to prioritize and sort inventory so that the collector is presented with the best accounts to collect upon. Dialing campaigns and workflows are designed to leverage the information so that the collectors are equipped to overcome all objections and negotiate the best possible arrangement for our clients and the consumer. The traditional credit report is being utilized less and less, but it very much has a role in our industry. Knowledge is power!
About State Collection Service, Inc.
Since 1949, State Collection Service has provided quality collection service to countless healthcare organizations.
Through experience and innovation, State Collection Service has grown to become a tremendously credible and nationally-recognized collection agency offering services from pre-registration to bad debt. It is upon the basis of ethical behavior and a dedication to integrity that each State Collection Service employee works to uphold the company’s vision – Partnerships for a Lifetime.