Outbound collections is a difficult division of any call center operations. Agents deal with irate and rude people on the other end of the line; they’re also likely to come across excuses to prolong payment of outstanding debt. Some calls are easier to handle than others, but everything must be dealt with calmly and professionally. It’s up to the agent to complete the call and make sure the debtor commits to payment.
Outbound collections call scripts come in handy. A good call script, drafted and implemented properly, is the agent’s guidemap in navigating collection calls. It’s a comprehensive outline of do’s and don’ts, also a playbook that helps keeps debtors from hanging up. This tool, while not the be-all and end-all of every call, ensures agents don’t drop the phone without assurance of payment to the other party.
A good outbound collections call script starts with proper introduction of the agent, and the reason for the call. It must also verify that the respondent is the actually the debtor. This is not just for formality’s sake; it is imposed by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (or any local equivalent). Good call center operations require debt collectors to identify themselves and the entity they are representing. Starting off with a prompt introduction lends a professional vibe and assures that the agent is on the right track.
Another point that a good call script must possess is a set of answers for the common excuses of not paying the debt. The list of excuses is long and varied, and each can be obvious or creative. It can escalate quickly from “We haven’t received the statement,” to “Our dog ate the statement.” The call script must be ready and creative enough to hold its own, or at least help the agent think on his feet when a more bizarre reason comes up. As the saying goes, “if there is a will, there is a way”, and if the one in debt can worm his way out of the call with words, the one collecting can also put a tight grip on that conversation with effective spiels.
One more asset of good outbound call center operations is the pause. Indeed, debt collecting by phone isn’t a one-way conversation. The agent with the script sometimes falls for the trick of reading it religiously, word for word, that the debtor cannot butt in and state his side. The call script must be sprinkled with pauses, placed at the appropriate moments for the debtor’s convenience. A script with pauses allows room for the two parties to breathe, adjust, and keep the call engaging and transparent.
A Guarantee Of Commitment
Lastly, the good call script must secure commitment. It may not be actual payment; for instance, he can promise to be contacted again another time. And after that, the agent can confirm the deal made to prevent misunderstanding. Having this outlined in the script ensures that despite not being able to pay, business relations with this person will still continue. All it takes is firm phrasing to wrap a call, whether it’s successful or otherwise.
Despite these seemingly rigid points, the script does not need to be spoken to the last letter. The best ones are actually just guides for the agent to make a successful outbound collection. Spontaneity still works outbound call center operations, and is always encouraged when it comes with a formidable outline on the side.
An outbound collection call script helps lighten one of the harder tasks of a voice campaign. Irate, rude debtors will be better handled, and excuses will be better countered. It falls on the agent to make the most out of it, but good scripts are always guaranteed to make the most out of every call.