Most small business owners come to face it at some time — clients who don't pay bills however hard you put into collecting it yourself. It is at times like this when you need a collection agency for small business.

Some business owners are hesitant because they fear an agency’s actions may tarnish their business relationships. There are five questions to ask to be sure there is no such risk. They are:

Are You Certified as a Collection Agency?

Certified collection agencies must fulfill tough criteria to obtain their certification. The agency has to:

  • Have collected claims commercially for at least four years
  • Employ five employees as a minimum
  • Comply with all laws - state and federal - involving debt collections
  • Comply with applicable licensing and registration laws.

Are You Licensed in my Area?

Most states need agencies to hold licenses in the area where they collect debts. Some agencies hold licenses in all 50 states in the US.

Do You Specialize in my Industry?

When a collection agency specializes in your niche, it is already likely to know any associated intricacies. When you are interviewing agencies, inquire as to how many clients they work for in your industry. It's also worth asking what their recovery rates are for those clients.

How Will You Communicate?

When hiring a collection agency for small business, some business owners are anxious when they turn customers over. They want the agency to inform them at every stage of the process. Some choose to be contacted only once the agency has successfully collected a debt. Small business owners should seek reassurance that the collection agency selected will accommodate the owner's choice.

What Tactics Will You Use to Collect the Debt?

The selected collection agency for small business is the guardian of its client's reputation. Protecting this reputation is paramount, so small business owners must ensure the debt collector is not going to use collection methods that harm the reputation of the business.

For example, although it is not illegal to refuse to negotiate when a debtor is facing financial difficulties, the employing business may want a soft approach taken with its clients when they are in default.

It's important to establish the methods the collection agency for small business is planning to use when collecting debts. Once you find a collection agency for small business you want to hire, always request references from other clients in your industry.

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