For those looking for a debt collector or wanting to become one, it is a multi-skilled occupation and not one that everyone could consider.
Apart from requiring in-depth knowledge of state debt collection laws, you will also need to develop communication skills that combine empathy with persuasion and negotiation. Also, you will need skills in how to track down individuals who are doing their best not to be found.
On top of this, you will need to be computer literate and familiar with computer searches. Debt collectors need a keen eye for detail and an awareness of how everything needs to be one hundred percent correct and completed within deadlines for justice to take its course.
So, in this article, we shall consider four key skills required by a debt collector that you will need if becoming one, or will be looking for when hiring one.
To track down those who owe a client money, debt collectors will require skills in how to search for someone both online and in more traditional ways.
In terms of searching on a computer, advanced knowledge of keyword searching is required. It is also about knowing which records are held online and those that are only held in paper form. Accordingly, knowing how to use different resources is fundamental for debt collectors.
When searching for a person on your own, there is usually a point when you do not have enough information to move forward.
This is when doing research becomes crucial. Essentially, a debt collector can find information and use their organizational skills to gather the knowledge that you need to move a case forward.
By starting broad, and then moving on to specifics, debt collectors can recognize quality sources, verify their findings, and even discover surprising answers that the average person would not be able to uncover.
Different from research skills, because these are paper or computer-based, debt collectors need to be skilled in the tactics of the hunter.
When they have found out as much as possible about those trying to escape justice and avoid paying what they owe, they need to know the places to find people. This comes from the experience of knowing the kinds of places and countries where it is easy to deliberately become lost.
It is about persistence and communicating discreetly with the right people to find out the information, yet not alerting those running away from their debt that the game is almost up. Then, when someone is tracked down, debt collectors need to know how to handle them at that point.
To find someone, you need to see if they have left a trace. This can be a digital or paper trail. For example, if the person withdraws money there will be a record of where and when. If a person rings someone on their mobile phone, there will be a record of the call.
When registering a vehicle, there will be an address left. Those good at hiding will know all this, but at the same time will have to survive. Thankfully, not all those escaping debts will be familiar with how to hide. It can still be a time-consuming job tracking them down, however. So, patience and persistence can be added to the skill list in that respect.
A debt collector needs the power of persuasion. Many who owe money will be reluctant to cooperate, so it can be a case of knowing how to handle people.
Empathy goes a long way in this business. We probably have a false view on debt collecting from television shows. Contrary to popular belief, the heavy-handed approach is not always the most effective one.
Legal training is required so that a debt collector can learn the legal process. There are complex procedures to follow precisely where court proceedings are concerned. It is in the legalities that those who have lent the money rely on a debt collector.
This is an area those outside the profession can find difficult to understand. Courts also have no time for inaccurately completed documents or late submissions. If justice is to be served, the papers need to be served on time. Everyone in law understands this.
So, in summary, we have discussed four skills to learn that incorporate lots of other abilities. A debt collector will need to be good at research, be capable of tracking people down and negotiating with them when their whereabouts are known, and they should also have a good understanding of legal procedures.