Collector - January 2021 - 29

Future Proof

Here's what industry professionals see on the horizon.
ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE
walk them through this. That's what we've
trained our agents to do. We compiled a
bunch of local resources and organizations
that are helping people during the pandemic,
so when our agents are speaking to consumers
the conversation isn't just focused on trying to
get a debt paid, but also checking in on them
and offering support as best we can. "
Account Management Resources also
implemented additional training and roleplaying to make sure collectors were being
empathetic toward consumers' challenges.
" It's a matter of changing your wording
and asking the right questions, " Willis said.
" I've been so proud of our recovery agents
and how much more conscious and aware
they are when they have conversations
with consumers. We still set expectations
of getting accounts paid, but we expect
them to do that by building a rapport with
consumers and showing empathy. "
This is not just a pandemic-only approach
to collections; Willis said she made it clear
to staff that this is their approach from here
on out.
" I told the agents: 'We want to come out
of this not just as a survivor; we want to
come out of it better than what we were
going into it. Don't think you're going to take
this training and put it in the drawer when
things calm down. It's never going back in
the drawer.' I think we all have a chance of
coming out of this as shining stars. "
Emerton agreed, adding that this is the
time to embrace a new outlook and look for
growth opportunities.
For instance, Asset Recovery has been an
8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. shop for years, but recently
they've started to notice the mornings are
very quiet. Employees suggested changing
the company's hours to 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
" When that came up, we thought, 'Why
wouldn't we consider that?' Having this
growth mindset is liberating. It's almost
like opening a new business, " she said. " I'm
excited to see what ideas our employees have
and excited to continue to maintain this level
of engagement with them. "
Anne Rosso May is ACA International's
communications director and editor-in-chief.

COLLECTOR 01.21

" Machine learning is something
I see continuing to move to the
forefront in 2021. We began using
a machine learning AI partner earlier in 2020
and are seeing good results. I think sometimes
companies assume that technologies like AI/
machine learning are expensive, but often
they're not. Any partner will work with you
through the model creation process, absorbing
some of that cost themselves and enabling you
to leverage those tools. "
-Jeffery Gartland, chief operating officer,
Hunter Warfield Inc.

CUSTOMER SERVICE &
RELATIONSHIPS
" There's been a gradual shift taking
place over the last two years or so
in the industry that I'm now seeing come to
fruition, which is this approach that we're not
a collection agency-we are a customer service
organization that works to resolve outstanding
debt. I think agencies that have shifted their
mindset to this way of thinking are going to be
the most successful long term. We found that it
works better to build a relationship and rapport
with the consumer. Nine times out of 10 if
you have a relationship with somebody, you're
going to have a better outcome. "
-Jon Balon, vice president of product and
innovation, Williams & Fudge

CFPB RULE COMPLIANCE
" I know people aren't typically
excited when the CFPB comes out
and says that they are going to make it tougher
for us to reach consumers, but this time I
think we are excited about knowing what the
rules are and everyone being on a level playing
field. With the new debt collection rule, we'll
finally have full transparency. We'll all know
what's allowed and what's not. I think this will
help the industry's image. Even though our
company has been very compliant, there are
bad actors out there that give collections and
servicing professionals a bad reputation. They
will have a hard time with compliance and
many will go away. I think it will be a lift for
our industry and collections in general. "
-Robert King, vice president, loan
servicing, TMX Finance

REDEFINING THE
INDUSTRY'S IMAGE
" I believe that for our industry
as a whole, this has really been
our opportunity to be a shining star. I know
what an outstanding job my agents have
done during this time and I hear the same
from my friends in the industry. That's the
light at the end of the tunnel. I think this is
going to be a game-changer as far as how
our industry is perceived, and I'm excited
about that. "
-Stacy Willis, director of operations,
Account Management Resources

STATE-LEVEL
REGULATION
" The new California legislation
that transforms the state's
existing Department of Business Oversight
into the Department of Financial
Protection and Innovation will have a big
impact on the industry. Th is in essence
creates a mini-CFPB in the state, which
will impact the business of debt collectors.
Given the size of the state, virtually
every collection function of size has
consumers who live in California, and this
development will likely create additional
compliance and business considerations
for industry participants. "
-Ted London, senior director of
government, collection agency and higher
education, FICO

CAREFUL ELECTRONIC
COMMUNICATION
" 2021 will be the year of
electronic communication
for the collection industry. Thoughtful,
deliberate, carefully planned electronic
communication workf lows that
are vetted through the compliance
management system of a collection
agency should pose little compliance
risk. Hastily compiled workf lows
that lack the benefit of input from the
compliance management system and
legal counsel will likely make the stories
we read about throughout 2021. "
-John Bedard Jr., managing attorney,
Bedard Law Group, P.C.

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Collector - January 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Collector - January 2021

Collector - January 2021 - Cover1
Collector - January 2021 - Cover2
Collector - January 2021 - 1
Collector - January 2021 - 2
Collector - January 2021 - 3
Collector - January 2021 - 4
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Collector - January 2021 - Cover3
Collector - January 2021 - Cover4
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202101
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202012
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202011
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202010
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202009
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202008
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202007
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202006
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202005
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202004
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202003
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202002
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/202001
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201912
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201911
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201910/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201909/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201908/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201907/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201906/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201905/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201904/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201903/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201902/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201901/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201812/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201811/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201810/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201809/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201808/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201807/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201806/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201805/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201804/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201803/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201802/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201801/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201712/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201711/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201710/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201709/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201708/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201707/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201706/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201705/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201704/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201703/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201702/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201701/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201612/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201611/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201610/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201609/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201608/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201607/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201606/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201605/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201604/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201603/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201602/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201601/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201512/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201511/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201510/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201509/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201508/
http://online.collector.com/collectormagazine/201507/
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com