January 8, 2015

Transportation Debt Collection

Transportation is a part of business.  How do you get your product to the right place at the right time?  There are many options to use for transportation and not all are equal.  A big problem that many shippers run into is not being paid on time.

Shippers move items from point a to point b.  The items are not theirs, but are shipped by companies and individuals who agree to pay the shipper for their services.  The average consumer has to pay for these services beforehand and is not able to pay on credit.  The larger volume shippers are able to ship on credit because they represent a larger portion of a shipper’s business.

Transportation debt collection is necessary for businesses when one of these large customers does not pay for their shipping services.  What makes things interesting is when this involves international shipping and the parties are from different countries.  Laws change as you cross over border lines and this makes collecting transportation debts a challenging process.  Whether this involves a cargo ship or cargo airline, the challenge is finding out who is on the hook for the unpaid funds.

A good transportation collection agency will be able to track down these people and motivate them to pay.  What makes collecting transportation debts difficult, is that not every country has the same laws as the United States.  It is much easier for a debtor to hide behind country lines.  Phone service and means of contacting the debtor may not be as reliable.  So how do you collect an international transportation debt?  The best thing to do is to turn the account over to a specialized debt collection agency with forensic corporate debt collection capabilities.  This will give you the best chance in collecting the overdue debt.  You can try to collect the debt yourself, but when you cross international border lines the complications grow exponentially and it is best to let a true professional organization handle the claim.

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September 6, 2014

Commercial Debt Collection Pitfalls

Commercial debt collection

Commercial debt collection

Commercial debt collection is a process, like all business is, and if this process is not perfected then the business has a greater chance of failing.  We will look at some of the most common pitfalls in regards to collecting business debts, which are all easily avoidable.  The goal is to help you and your business get paid on time and to profit for years to come.

The first pitfall with commercial debt collection is not having a plan at all.  The plan does not have to be too intricate, as long as you have a plan of action.  At 30 days do you send a letter reminding the customer of the outstanding debt?  At 60 days do you call?  At 90 days do you turn the debt over to a collection agency?  These are basic actions and deadlines that need to be addressed.  If you are able to do this, then you are well ahead of the curve.

A second pitfall is not delegating debt collection properly.  This is common in any small business, because staffing is usually tight and employees are forced to handle multiple roles.  The biggest question that you need to ask is, would I be better situated letting someone else handle this?  It does not have to be a 3rd party collection agency, but possibly someone internally can do a better job.  Do not send an engineer to change a light bulb.    You will be better situated doing what you do best, and that is focusing on your business.  True, you can handle your businesses commercial collections, but it will cost you more than hiring a collection agency.  Collection agencies exist due to this fact, they earn their keep.  Once you have found a commercial collection agency that is professional and does a good job, then it is imperative that you setup a working relationship with them.  Make sure they understand what your business needs and that they understand your specific industry.

Commercial collection agencies are there to help businesses of all sizes collect their debts and get back on track with their operations.  Do not let bad debt and outstanding accounts slow you down.  The key with debt collection is to act sooner than later, because you never know when a company will default on your account and you will have a harder time getting paid.

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August 17, 2014

Choosing a Transportation Collection Agency

Transportation Collection Agency

Transportation Collection Agency

If you are in the transportation industry, then you undoubtedly have outstanding accounts.  How do you choose the right collection agency for your transportation specific industry?  Do you feel comfortable going with a traditional debt collection business that does not know the transportation laws?

Transportation is unique segment of the economy with many nuances in the legal system.  A traditional collection firm will not know these laws and will this collect at a lower rate, if they are able to collect at all.  So how do you know if a collection agency knows your industry?  The best thing to do is call them up and interview them.  If they do not understand what you are talking about or are not able to match you with the transportation lingo, then that is a tell-tale sign that you need to continue looking.

You know your business and industry better than anyone, so use your instincts to tell you if a debt collection firm is the right fit.  You want a collection agency that is as professional and knowledgeable as your company.  If you settle for a company that does not meet your standards, you will regret this later.  A good, professional transportation collection agency will help you collect your outstanding transportation debt and retain your customers.  There are many second rate collection agencies, and everyone knows the stereo typical strong arm tactics that they use.  However, when you choose the right transportation collection agency, they do not need to use these.  They use the legal system to leverage your accounts and get them collected.  If you are not using a transportation specific collection firm, then you may need to start the process of selecting one.

Transportation debt is difficult to collect, because the debtors know the industry and the laws.  If you use a transportation debt collection firm that can use these same laws as leverage against the debtor, then you will be much more satisfied with the results.  Take the time to interview and select the right transportation collection business for your company.

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August 11, 2014

Debt Collection: Decision Day

Today we will talk about the importance of having a D-Day or decision day in regards to debt collection.  This is the day that you move forward in the collection process and start actively collecting the debt.  If you do not have a deadline for collecting your debt, then you are liable to get your company into some difficult financial situations.

It has been proven time and time again, that the sooner you start the collection process, the more likely you are to collect the debt.  Most people think of this evil process when collecting debt, but it does not have to be this.  You can send a letter out or just make a friendly phone call to the debtor or business.  This is just a heads up and to let them know that you expect to get paid.  You would be amazed at how many businesses do not do this.

Take the time to setup a plan of action for your old accounts.  It may take a couple of hours or days, but it is well worth your time and effort.  You can even work hand in hand with a professional collection agency to setup the right strategy for collecting your debt.  If you find the right collection agency, then they can work like an in-house agency.  When they know your expectations, they can better serve you and help you keep your customers.

Many businesses worry that they will scare away their customers if they proceed with collections.  This can be true, but if you keep their needs in mind you have a better chance of keeping them.

So when is the best date to start the collection process?  As a rule of thumb, you better turn over your accounts no later than 90 days.  This ensures that you will get paid.  The longer you wait, the less of a chance that you can collect.  If you act at 90 days, you have a better chance of your account rising to the top of the stack.  You are not the only person who would liked to be paid.  Keep this in mind and act sooner, rather than later.

Good luck with your debt collections and let us know if we can help you.

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July 27, 2014

Small Business Debt Collection

business debt collectionDebt collection is important for all businesses, but it is much more important for small businesses.  A large business or corporation can better weather the ups and downs of economic cycles, because they have more financing options.  Small businesses on the other hand may not have as many options and one bad debt can send the company into bankruptcy. (more…)

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