Frequently Asked Questions: Debt Collection
The first step in protecting your company against non-paying customers is the initial evaluation and approval of potential customers. It is important that you make use of a well-defined selection process and that only those applicants who actually fit the criteria are approved.
Once a potential client has been approved, the set credit limits must be monitored and not exceeded. Payment deadlines must also be met by the clients, and it is also important to look out for early warning signs that might lead to future payment problems. Some of these warning signs might include the change of payment methods (from bank transfer to payment by check or cash); new bank details (problems with other banks); frequent change of address/residence.
The experts at the EOS Group would be glad to assist you in setting up an effective information management system in order to secure your business right from the start of a customer relationship. We can also assist you with our expertise in receivables management and thereby help you to safeguard your liquidity once a customer has not paid.
The main advantage of working with a specialized company like EOS is that we are experts in what we do: we use modern methods of debt collection and do our best to find individual solutions with your customers. When outsourcing your receivables management to EOS, you can concentrate on your core business while being sure that your receivables are taken care of professionally.
The main advantages of working with a debt collecting company are:
- the avoidance of pleading between debtee and debtor
- a higher success rate
- The long-term monitoring of debtors that are not able to pay increases the chance that they will pay in the future, once they have recovered financially.
We are experts in what we do and know how to approach the different cases, thereby increasing the chance that a debt will be paid.
The expenses related to a legal process are usually high and the time to get a verdict is usually quite long. It is therefore recommended to first try to solve the issue outside of court and, only if that fails, to assess the possibilities of a court process.
A professional debt collection process at EOS Solutions UK Plc consists of three phases:
- The pre-legal collection phase refers to the acts of contacting the debtor in the attempt to establish a quick payment plan. Therefore, as a first step, we send a printed warning to the debtor via mail. In many cases, letters from debt collection companies are more effective than those from the original supplier, as they are perceived to be more imperative.
- If this first step does not lead to a payment, we will remind your customer of his/her debts through telephone calls and other modern methods of debt collection such as e-mail reminders or SMS. In most cases we succeed in collecting the majority of debts in this phase.
- If this is still not effective, we will evaluate, in conjunction with you, the potential efficacy of legal action.
Debt collection agencies usually have a higher success rate because debt collection is their core activity and they are equipped with specialized resources (know-how, professional human resources, and technology). In contrast to that, in most of the small and medium enterprises, the accountant or the sales agent is responsible for the debt collection needs. This extra task often overloads the staff’s activity and the consequence can include the risk of giving it a low priority. The results can be a low level of collection or even an increasing amount of bad debt. It is therefore strongly recommended that a professional collection agency is used for the recovery of unpaid invoices. This way your staff can concentrate on your core business, and, in addition to that, the amount of unpaid bills can be minimized.
That depends on your wishes and needs. If the process is properly designed, the internal credit and collection department and the external collection company complement each other in a win-win scenario. The internal department can focus its resources and energy on the initial client selection and on the early stages of the collection process. In contrast, the external collection agency will focus its efforts on the later stages of the collection process, including both pre-legal and legal steps, and help you achieve payments.
Thanks to our client portal, you can always check the status of your accounts. In the case of an urgent request from a client, or when a certain situation necessitates it, we can immediately send a report by e-mail or by fax, thereby making sure that you will be able to act regardless of the fact that you have outsourced your receivables management.
When working with a debt collection company it is essential to check in advance that the agency you choose is a reputable partner. Unfortunately, not all the collection agencies are the same and not all of them possess the necessary resources and take the necessary steps to prevent harm to your company. At EOS, we work with focus and understanding, always searching for amicable solutions and keeping in mind that the debtor is your customer. We know how valuable customer relationships are and do our best to protect them.
If you choose to outsource your collection activities to a professional and reputable company like EOS, the risk of your image being negatively impacted is minimal. In many cases, using an external collection agency actually brings a positive effect to your image. Investors, suppliers, and customers will know that you take your collection seriously and that you use a professional partner to handle it.