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I felt like I was back on inbound customer service again.
  #1  
Old 06-28-2019, 02:01 AM
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Food Lady Food Lady is offline
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Default I felt like I was back on inbound customer service again.

I'm reminded why I'd rather do collections.

See, most of my customers are really nice and want to pay once they realize they have so many open invoices.
This woman came at me both barrels blasting like I used to get in customer service. When they have a lease and don't tell us they want to close the account once the contract is at end date, it goes month-to-month and they are liable to pay invoices as long as they have our equipment. That's what happened with this business. The Controller signed the contract in 2014 and she's still there, still doing the accounts payable stuff. They haven't paid us in over a year and owe a couple grand.

I called and left a message yesterday. Today she called back angry and almost immediately jumped to "We're not paying it." It wasn't "Which invoices are unpaid? " or "How long has it been overdue?? " or "Oh, I'm so sorry we let it get this far behind!" or even "But we have paid all the invoices!" I get all those responses from well-meaning, cooperative customers.

But this one--her reason for not paying is that we didn't notify them they were overdue. Now, yes, in the last three years our collection efforts weren't on point. We put our energy toward handling the fall-out from the billing system change. We weren't calling out nor sending letters, but taking hundreds of calls with a full call center. We did have off-shore collections and that was mostly it. In the last year we have created a department from our team and contracted a call center to help. It's better.

So we're calling now because she owes us 5 quarterly payments. FIFTEEN MONTHS BEHIND. OK, it's embarrassing and annoying to find that out, but it's your job to keep track. Plus, you were paying it since 2014, up until a year after contract end date. I know you know when the payments are due. She was angry and demanded the contract copy and ended up hanging up on me. I sent her the contract with her signature and terms and conditions with pertinent verbiage highlighted in bright yellow.

You know, I'm not supposed to write off lease payments but it doesn't mean I can't ever. My boss will usually approve most decisions I make in that regard. I'm not supposed to offer to waive all the late fees but that doesn't mean I don't ever do it. She's screwing herself out of my help, frankly. And while we don't report to the credit bureaus, I can't guarantee that the outside collectors won't.
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  #2  
Old 06-28-2019, 04:12 AM
earl colby pottinger earl colby pottinger is offline
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Default Take back

Can't you take back the equipment.
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Old 06-28-2019, 05:30 AM
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We only take it back once the contract is terminated. I don't know why but as long as I've been there that has been the rule. If a business closes and leaves it there, we have an agency who goes after it.

Her choices are:

a. Pay what she owes and I close the contract/account in good standing and we send a tech to get the equipment.
b. She refuses to pay and I remotely lock the equipment*, close the contract/account in delinquent status, and code the system so that it gets sent to a third party collector.
Tech support repossesses the equipment.

*We usually hold off locking until we send the last of the delinquent letters.
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