Collector - May 2020 - 34

ACANEWS

Leaving Las Vegas with Tons of New Information
ACA International's Spring Forum event in March showcased a new, ForwardTECH twist.
By Kim Coghill

L

as Vegas was bursting with energy
in March when accounts receivable
management industry professionals
from across the country arrived for three
days of educational sessions on trends
in technology, compliance and various
other business topics. ACA International's
much-anticipated 2020 Spring Forum &
Expo with a ForwardTECH twist included
an exciting lineup of expert speakers
who were on-site throughout the event
to mingle with attendees and engage in
thoughtful conversations.
Among the highlights of the conference,
Kelly Knepper-Stephens, vice president of
legal compliance with TrueAccord, led an
informative discussion on risk assessment
followed by a packed session focused on
designing, implementing and measuring
controls aligned with risks and priorities
as defined and identified by the Consumer
Financial Protection Bureau.
The CFPB came up in another
presentation when ACA CEO Mark Neeb
provided an update of federal policy issues,
including everything new emerging from
the bureau, such as the recent release of the
supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking
on out-of-statute debt. ACA staff has covered
this issue extensively in ACA Daily as its
impact on the industry is expected to be
tremendously important.
Sitting alongside Neeb, ACA President
Roger Weiss shared highlights of the
board's recent decision to expand the
Industry Advancement Program to include
an opportunity for members to apply for
matching funds to help offset the cost of
winnable lawsuits. Successful applicants may
receive up to $10,000 in a dollar-for-dollar
match on cases that don't necessarily have
a broad industry impact, but nonetheless
have a strong regional impact. Additional
information may be found here:

34

Irene Hoheusle, G. Scott Purcell, John Bedard and Elizabeth Conklin.

www.acainternational.org/industryadvancement-program.

#FORWARDTECH - WEAVING
TECHNOLOGY INTO
COLLECTIONS
The future of collections was discussed
by multiple speakers throughout the
well-attended #ForwardTECH track
sessions, including one titled, "A Look
Into the Future: The Collection Office
of 2030." Featured experts Ranjan
Dharmaraja, CEO of Quantrax Corp.,
and Dan Womack, senior director of
engineering and product management for
Ontario Systems Inc., offered their insights
on robots, the shift toward "agentless
collections" and even avatars.
Dharmaraja believes technology trends
reveal a growing number of companies will
advance toward robots as this approach

is more likely to reduce information
and/or compliance-related errors, among
other benefits. Several audience members
expressed uncertainty at the thought of
no longer using humans for two-way
communications related to working
through debt collection issues. Nevertheless,
Dharmaraja said the technology is available,
so the next step is for companies to decide
how to blend it into their business models.   
Everyone seemed to agree that consumers
(particularly millennials) prefer to be
contacted via email or text, leading Womack
to question whether there will come a time
when consumers will revolt and return to
the days of visiting collections offices to
pay a bill. While anything is possible, most
attendees nodded in agreement that the
future is upon us and the way companies
engage and recover debt today will be very
different in 2030.

ACAINTERNATIONAL.ORG


http://www.acainternational.org/industry-advancement-program http://www.acainternational.org/industry-advancement-program https://www.acainternational.org/news/cfpb-sets-may-fourth-comment-deadline http://www.ACAINTERNATIONAL.ORG

Collector - May 2020

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