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The first collection techniques that a company should try are those of a reputable debt collection agency. The agency selected should be chosen with care.

It’s very common for businesses to be very apprehensive about hiring a professional debt collection agency to recover their unpaid accounts.

This reluctance is often down to concerns they have about how the relationship with their clients may be compromised, and how hiring a debt collector might tarnish the relationship.

They need not be concerned because any good debt collection agency will understand the relationship and can adapt the approach they will use accordingly.

Good debt collection agencies not only successfully recover funds but they also maintain relationships so they can continue if this is what is desired. If the relationship has come to an end then the collection agency can take a stronger approach.

Differentiation and Specialization

With over 4,000 collection agencies in the United States some differentiation is needed at the outset. Some agencies handle only consumer accounts while others specialize in collections involving business-to-business (B2B) transactions. The largest firms invariably handle both.

Some debt collection agencies concentrate on certain industries, like healthcare. Others work for a combination of industries. Some agencies cater to a certain size of business, others are specifically regional.

What is important is to book an agency which has an established record of successfully collecting within your industry. This agency needs to be familiar with the language of your industry as well as any rules and regulations set down by the state or federal agencies.

In the healthcare field the chosen agency needs to be up to speed on medical terms, insurance requirements, and any important legislation like HIPAA.

Important Factors When Choosing a Debt Collection Agency

To pinpoint the reputable and effective service that your business needs:

  • Request referrals from your accountant, attorney, and trusted business associates
  • Do research in the the Association of Credit and Collections Professionals International directory which lists member agencies that are licensed in your area
  • Check with the Better Business Bureau to discover the ratings and any complaints about any collection agency under consideration
  • Ensure the agency is state licensed and bonded
  • Discover where the agency has been licensed to be sure it covers the area that your business covers
  • Be sure that the agency is adequately insured because E&O insurance should provide coverage for any claims brought for any improper conduct, like harassment
  • Sit down with the collection agency to get more of a feel for them
  • Don't worry about size because a small, local firm may be just what you need depending on your circumstances. It is the agency's strengths, reputation and track record that matter most

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