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Interview with a Debt Collection & Credit Management Specialist

1. Describe your business and why you chose that business and your vision for the future.

I have always got a great deal of satisfaction by helping people from all walks of life. Businesses get into debt; and debt collection that becomes harder as time goes on. After studying accounting, I worked as Financial controller but found my effort was always in the debtor’s receivables area.

Negotiating getting promises to pay following up that the promises to pay were honoured, the endless chasing of customers who breached the terms of trade .I decided that my efforts could be utilized in more than one company so I embarked on the corporate debtors trail.

I took on 6 month contracts and from there I managed my time more efficiently so took on a number of clients at a time. Mostly I attend their premises and collect the debts using their computer data base.

I love to help and get to the bones of the problem why a customer cannot/will not pay

My vision is to have one person in the 3 Eastern states representing me and doing what I do with a few clients to look after each week.

2. Describe your customers what you do to satisfy them and how do you measure their satisfaction?

My customers although I prefer clients/partners, are in Education, Timber, Fitness equipment, Point of sale software, Finance and are situated from Dandenong to Carlton and all points between.

I get the job done in half a day by making promises to pay with their customers. I come back a day or 2 later and follow up to ascertain if the promises have materialized into cash in their bank. I satisfy them by identifying problem debtors and recommending corrective action and by collecting debtor s outside the trading terms.

At the end of the month I show the client a spreadsheet of debtor’s total exposure to their clients and how it has favorably by decreasing ten amount of money outstanding. The satisfaction is as back and white as decrease in the 60-90 day column of the Aged Debtors Trial balance.This shows the aging of sales invoices made and delivered but unpaid.

If the total increases the reason must be ascertained and immediately correctly. They then are very unhappy. This happens rarely touch wood. With strong Internal Control on Debtors at time of sale with stop supply listings and other techniques satisfaction after implementation is guaranteed.

Satisfaction with debtors is always short lived as soon as the financials are rolled over for the month or the month then there are a new batch of invoices that are now overdue.

3. Describe a successful marketing strategy implemented in your business.

With Credit Management, the main strategy is keep the customer happy and then they will pass on the good word about what I have done with the business. A lot of businesses in this game are call centres with staff not being committed to the objective which is collect money quickly. Marketing is doing a good job and slipping into conversation that if you are happy spread the word to collegues.Mail outs to debtors cannot convey the prompt impact I can have on their business. I attend the Glen Eira Business mentoring programmed and gave a talk about debt collection which was met with a round of boos as I introduced my topic. Everyone seems to have a theory but my practical work shows results that are the marketing that gets noticed.

4. Describe a problem you overcome because the business is home based

Credibility that I am large enough to handle majors but small enough to get to the detail is so important. I am home based but how can I prove that not having an office can make me more efficient to the client. Having 15 years doing the same thing saying the same words knowing the same rebuttal is one way.

Give me an excuse for not paying I will counter it. Initially the prospect may be wanting to show me the financial records on their home turf and to have a chat with me about what I can do.They may not want me to go to their secure area.Home based means they may wish to see me off their site. They may want to come to my space in my home this may be a little threatening especially if the business owner is hurling personal abuse or 4 letter profanity. The case models bark was normally worse than her bite. After all this is business not personal she was a decent human being going through a rough patch.

How I, a one man home based show, can help the aloof person is one of credibility I sat down and empathised with the problems; talk it out; talk it through; then systematically come up with a solution.

5. Describe 2 achievements that have contributed to the growth of your business

Each and every day there are achievements that make business/enterprise stronger and stronger.

Finding a debtor that has avoided us turned off his mobile, not answering his landline telephone, not answering letters, emails, faxes. And then after spreading the word about this business owing us money………. the amount appeared in the account and the customer’s account has a zero balance. This achievement made to business stronger and thus reach a new level of responsibility.

Achievement 2.Proceding legally against a debt can be costly without much result in some circumstances. Using a solicitor can loose control of the debt and matter as a third party is involve .An achievement that spread the word of my success was to allow me to represent the client the Victorian Conciliation Administration Tribunal

This included preparation of document lodging and submitting of evidence so that we can get judgment which I can then instruct the sheriff to seize and sell [property owned by the respondent. This was an achievement which meant more cudos responsibility and control of the accounts receivable function.

To find out how AlanAssociates can help you, call us on (0414)78 1639 or complete our quick Contact Form.



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