Each year, the California Association of Collectors works hard to bring relevant education to those working in the accounts receivable industry. One of the central ways they do this is through high-quality webinars and live courses. 

For the second year in a row, PDCflow has had the privilege to amplify the information they provide. In attending these courses and creating blogs and downloadable guides based on the topics the panel discussed, a wider audience than ever can bolster their industry knowledge.

The year is coming to an end, and another season of fantastic content is just around the corner. In case you missed any of the topics discussed, here is an overview of what David Kaminski, Kelly Parsons-O’Brien, Courtney Reynaud, Mike Cheek and Hunter Quinn covered throughout 2018.

Call Recording Laws

The series began with information on federal and state call recording laws. Federal laws require one-party consent, meaning one of the parties in the conversation must give permission to record. On top of this, each state has its own laws which govern how calls may be recorded. Several states require two-party consent, where all parties involved must consent to recording of their conversation.

During the webinar, Kaminski , partner at Carlson & Messer LLP, a Los Angeles-based civil litigation firm, discussed some specifics of California’s call recording laws. He also offered advice on ways to obtain call recording consent. One of the most important components of call recording consent is to notify all parties the call is being recorded at its outset.  

Call Baiting

In the second webinar, the CAC panel tackled call baiting – another difficult issue for debt collectors. Kaminski and the other panelists discussed best practices of call baiting prevention, such as updating your compliance management system and introducing the issue during training.

They also identified common call baiting tells and how to respond. A few of the most common tells include those when the callers sound as though they are reading from a script or they are unusually well-versed in debt collection law. A few of the ways the CAC panel suggested protecting yourself and your agents was intense documentation of any possible call bait. And above all, do not answer a question if you are not certain of the answer, or have management approval to respond.

Collection Tactics and Team Management

Training agents to overcome stalls and objections was also discussed during the series. Parsons-O’Brien, President of Pacific Credit Services, emphasized the importance of understanding consumer personality types, emotions and common reasons behind non-payment.  

Along with the knowledge required to effectively deal with consumers, the panel covered incentives and competitions collection managers can use to connect with and motivate their employees (especially among multi generational teams). To accompany motivational tools, they spoke about how to use personality tests for hiring and tactics for employee retention, including stay interviews, quarterly reviews and action plan meetings. 

To close out the series, the panel discussed how to improve communications with consumers. This included the pros and cons of different communication methods, and effective words to use with different generations of consumers. 

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