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The Famous Book Of Excuses



Ok, it might not be famous to everyone, but if you have spent anything like a considerable period of time in the debt collection industry you will know that there is an unspoken, unwritten list of excuses. We have sometimes jokingly given them made up page numbers as if to extend the imaginary idea even further.


That is not to say that we treat the work that we do at JSP Credit Management with impunity. We take our work very seriously. However, we have developed over time, and after hearing the same excuses crop up time and time again, a level of acceptance around the nature and flow of the way interactions normally happen in this line of work.


There are numerous benefits to this experience. We have harnessed this imaginary database of excuses in such a way that it actually informs the services that we now provide to our clients which go above and beyond the transactional tasks of which our various credit management products are comprised.


We like to go further than just being a reactionary force at the disposal of our clients whose job is to firefight problems that have already begun. When we work with our clients we proactively set out to prevent the same problems arising for them again in the future. That sounds like we are doing ourselves out of business, but we do not agree. Research conducted by TheCityUK.Com suggested that unsustainable business debts could reach £70billion by March 2021. There seems to be plenty to go around.


What we like to think it will do though is stop some businesses having to take some of the drastic measures that we know that some are already having to take because of problems associated with commercial debts and cash-flow problems arising from late and non-paid invoices. For example in the last quarter (Apr-Jun 21), there was a 39% increase in CVL’s (companies being wound up as they cannot pay their debts).


The case for support to businesses suffering from problems with their debtors not paying them on time is fairly compelling we are sure you would agree. But how should it actually be done? The same commentary referenced above implies that there is no particular industry more susceptible to insolvency than any of the others.


We believe that part of the solution lies in an understanding that the problem cannot be confronted with a one-dimensional approach. It needs an approach that understands that the underlying factors involved in each CVL are probably as wide-ranging as the famous book of excuses we are talking about in this blog.


So how are the two linked then? Well, quite frankly, we believe they are one and the same, just being looked at from different perspectives. And once we have attached that level of importance to it, naturally we are going attach the same level of importance to a proposed solution for it. In essence, we're saying that we need to be bringing as diverse a range of services to the industry as are the excuses for not paying.


We have openly said in previous blogs that JSP Credit Management is not a one-man army and is not trying to be either. However, we do acknowledge that when “Joe Bloggs Limited” comes to us asking for support on an unpaid debt we cannot automatically assume that we should adopt the same approach as we have already been using successfully for our existing client “John Smith Limited”.


In discussions with a recent client about some debt collection work they were planning to instruct us on, we were excited to tell them about the recent developments in a new automated debt collection process and how we had planned to implement even more automation to the process which we could use to service their portfolio. But they did not want that. They wanted an actual human to do the collecting.


We discussed in some depth some of the aforementioned factors affecting the non-payment of those debts, including a consideration of the culture of the businesses, and the country within which collection activities would be taking place and it was determined that more of a human touch was going to yield greater results.


Our experience tells us that some businesses and cultures value the strength of a business relationship over the quality or price of a product or service and conversely, some cultures are not interested in how warm a relationship they feel they have with their suppliers as long as their service and product meets their needs. Being attuned to these factors we can provide an even greater client-specific service and therefore achieve even higher levels of satisfaction in the process.


Don’t get us wrong however, you do not have to be a qualified psychoanalyst to be successful in debt collection. The single biggest reason we have ever come across for non-payment of an invoice is due to the invoice not being received. The solution is fairly simple. Get your client's email address, put a read receipt of your emails and even ask for confirmation of receipt if you need to, and watch your cash collection stats grow.


Again, it is that ability to adapt which is going to result in, well, results. We are still learning too. The debt collection sphere is changing just as fast as the rest of the commercial world and in response to the significant changes which have been imposed upon the vast majority of us over the last 18 months. We consider that open-minded attitude to be one of our strongest assets in times when the next hoop to jump through is just around the corner.


We are here to do a bit to businesses safeguard their cash flow against late payers or debtors that are refusing to pay, so if you have been struggling to get an invoice paid and would appreciate the support of a team who pride themselves on operating in a way that is mindful of the above then visit our website at www.jspcreditmanagement.co.uk and contact us to discuss your needs. We operate on a no-win-no-fee basis for bad debt recovery and our credit control and credit risk services can be ordered via our website with the littlest of hassle.

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