A collection agent is a link between the creditor and his client. Collection agent work for the creditors and they collect debts for a fee or percentage of total amount. It’s also known as debt collector or bills and accounts collector.

Job Description

A collection agent is responsible for collection of debts, loans, bills, other dues etc. from the creditor’s clients. A collection agent contacts the debtors of delinquent accounts by different modes like telephonic calls, mails or personal visits on behalf of the creditors. They need to follow a legal protocol and create a sense of urgency for debt collection. A collection agent can be first party agent who are employed in house by the company or third party agent which are separate firm contracted by a company to collect debts.

Skill Requirements

A collection agent requires a number of skills to excel in this career. The skills required are as follows:

  • Skill of persuasion: This skill is a must in order to convince the debts to pay their dues in time.
  • Listening skills: Required to know the problem of the debtor for not paying dues in time.
  • Problem solving skills: To deal with the unexpected conflicts and errors.
  • Organization and administrative skills: To maintain records in an organized manner.
  • Communication skills: Oral as well as written communication skills in order to communicate with accordance to the guidelines.
  • Negotiation skills: To profit himself and his client.
  • Computer skills: Often data needs to be recorded on the computer or its softwares.

Job Duties

Duties of collection agents are as follows:

  • Listing the numbers and details of the debtors and arrange them in order of urgency
  • Locate the debtors by use of different databases
  • Contacting and informing them about the unpaid accounts and urgency of repaying debts by modes like calls, mails or personal visit.
  • Making arrangements for repayment of debts and preparing repayment schedules according to the debtors financial situation
  • Recording and documentation of the various details of repayment like paid amount, unpaid, dues, discounts, interest amount etc.
  • Resolving conflicts and negotiating.
  • Advising clients on different strategies for repayments.
  • Solicitation with the state or federals laws.

Work Conditions

A collection agent works in a normal office or a call center. They work during normal business hours, 40 hours per week but many a times have to work for extra hours in order to get their task done. Their entire day is spent in contacting the debtors, communicating with the clients, recording information and making arrangements for repayments. Collection agents may also work on part time basis or in flexible work schedules. They have a choice to directly work in a company with the company as their sole client; or work with a collection agent company and handle clients.

Educational Requirements

Usually a graduate in any field can pursue their career as a collection agent. The education qualification is not rigid as there is no specific formal education course required. A post graduate degree in management will be helpful if a person wants to get a manger level job. Other than this a person having an experience in a call center or in customer serve will have better opportunity in getting into this field. Many collection agencies give formal as well as informal training to its employees to develop various skills as collection agents.

Tips for the job:

  • Keep the communication clear and transparent.
  • Always keep calm and respect for the creditors and the client.
  • Stressing gives no solutions, keep away from it.

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