New research from revenue collection experts Talgentra has revealed that improving customer profiling, the use of new technology and the integration of existing IT systems are seen as the most important factors in increasing revenue collection in utility, telecoms and finance companies. However, most organisations in these sectors are not using specialised technology systems to improve collection rates and increase revenues.
These companies share common ground in that they are owed money by customers for loans and credit cards or they provide services in advance of payment.
Talgentra’s survey has uncovered some shocking statistics — every single one of the 250 senior managers questioned expect to see an increase in the number of customers with repayment difficulties over the next 12 months. 87% of respondents expect that the level of consumer bad debt write-off (as a % of their company’s revenue) will increase in 2005.
Chris Buckham, Director of Marketing at Talgentra, said: “Companies are quite literally throwing billions of pounds of revenue down the drain every year by not adopting a best-practice approach to decrease the level of customer write-offs. Inadequate IT systems are no longer an acceptable excuse for not being able to bill and collect money from customers.”
Specialist collection systems and sophisticated credit scoring and selection facilities are available today and the Return on investment (ROI) of deploying these have been proven.
The financial returns of implementing a debt collection and revenue management system such as Talgentra’s Tallyman are quantifiable and immediate. Companies are reporting a complete pay back on their investment in less than 12 months as a result of reduced write offs and increased revenue collection. Cash flow too is improved- businesses that have implemented new revenue management and collections systems have improved their collections performance by 25% in less than 6 months.
Professor Nick Wilson from The Credit Management Research Centre at Leeds
University Business School, said: “Of course, companies should adopt a sensitive approach when collecting overdue payments from certain customers who are in financial difficulties. However, we shouldn’t be diverted from the fact that people should repay a loan or pay for utility services that they have used and that non-paying customers affect future prices for all of us.”