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Intelligent data-driven debt collection – the future of Council recovery

intelligent debt collectionWe are on a mission here at Destin Solutions; to change the way Local Authorities think about debt collection and the approach taken when it comes to recovery. Typically collections staff are given a list of debts to recover and these are duly worked through and in some instances, then handed out to enforcement agencies once a certain stage is reached.

Injecting intelligence into the debt collection process from the start
Imagine if at the beginning of this whole process, before lists are assigned that detailed debt analysis was conducted drawing from a combination of rich Council data combined with additional data sourced from third party suppliers. The idea here is to turn the process on its head, getting a level of detail on debtors, both domestic and non-domestic that provide powerful insights that inform next best action, before you have even assigned the debt for collection.

Automated analysis of debtors
Say you have a list of 1,000 new debts to work through, prior to these being allocated to anyone, you have a system in place that automatically analyses the information about those debtors, reviewing their credit history, assets, vulnerability and ability to pay. The system then uses this data to inform how and who should be handling how this debt is collected to achieve the best possible outcome. You are effectively injecting a level of intelligence into the process from the very beginning, automating the process of identifying who is most likely to pay, whether a flexible repayment plan will be more successful, whether the debt should be written off and more.

This is the future of Council debt collection, the technology is available now and several of our customers are already using our Data Services solution to automate some of their decision making processes to improve their collections capability.

Using smart workflows to route debt down the right treatment path
We are effectively talking about moving away from a binary approach to debt collection, using data driven methodology combined with the professional expertise of your collections staff. This approach is the epitome of professionalism using smart workflows built and designed by ex-Revenues Managers who fully understand the processes involved in the collection and recovery of Council debt.

As well as directing debt down a certain route depending on what the initial data analysis uncovers, sophisticated reporting metrics can identify if a certain set of actions result in a higher percentage of debt being recovered. This is powerful stuff, Authorities can use this information to start proactively adapting recovery approaches depending on what the data is telling them.

This is an approach which will revolutionise your debt collection strategy, so instead of taking one route for a certain type of debtor, the data may be indicating that another route is yielding more impressive collection results. The quality of the data is clearly a key factor, both in-house council data alongside the external financial data of debtors, but so too is the workflow built into the application, that determines the next best action.

Self-learning and adapting for optimal recovery
It’s about setting coherent, well-thought out parameters, for example if debtor ‘A’ meets this set of criteria they should be routed to recovery specialist ‘X’ and these next set of actions should occur in this order. But it’s also much more than that, it’s self-learning, it’s about then reviewing and tweaking these parameters to achieve optimal outcomes for recovery.

Local Authorities are on the precipice of something big here and have the opportunity to turn debt collection on its head, using automated intelligence to direct recovery and collections activity right from the very start of the process.

A personalised approach to recovery
At Destin Solutions we have spent the last ten years fine-tuning our data processing and analysis technology using a Councils own data to combine all their debt streams into a single view of the citizen and a single view of business. This now provides a powerful platform on which to host our Data Services solution, consolidating data in an intelligent way enabling Authorities to know their customer and determine the most appropriate recovery option based on detailed data and analysis.

The team have consulted with dozens of Authorities over the years and are well-versed in developing bespoke workflows that make best use of the data available, promoting a greater understanding of customers and a more cohesive approach to corporate debt policies.

Ultimately it’s about getting the right data to the right people to not only enhance the debt collection strategy but then using the outputs of that data to inform whether that strategy is effective, or, as our MD puts it ‘creating a feedback loop’.

If you want to find out more about Destin Solutions ‘Data Services’ please email duncan.baxter@destin.co.uk or call 07970 342877.

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