11. 26. 19

Understanding business performance can be challenging for owners and operators due to the closely held nature of information. Far too often have we seen business owners struggle to assess opportunities for improvement within their business due to a lack of information, which can negatively impact long-term business performance. As a result, Kaulkin Ginsberg Company (Kaulkin Ginsberg) teamed up with Commercial Collection Agencies of America (CCA of A) to develop a two-year operating metrics performance trend.

This Member Benchmark Operating Metrics Survey Report (Benchmark Survey) covered a great deal of information on operating statistics and best-in-class business practices between 2016 and 2017. According to Annette M. Waggoner, the Executive Director of CCA of A, “The Board believes that it’s important for business owners to establish a basis for comparison on operations since this provides a tremendous benchmark on how individuals can improve operations within their respective businesses, whether that be through optimizing the allocation of supervisors to collectors, investing in compliance resources and certifications, or entering into a new market vertical.”

Specifically, the Benchmark Survey showed that compliance was a point of consideration for CCA of A participants. According to Michael Thomas, Vice President of Kaulkin Ginsberg, “between 2016 and 2017, the total compliance software and labor expenses increased by roughly 86% and 29%, respectively, year-over-year.” Annette noted that compliance audits have become more prevalent and will continue to be in future years. As service providers, agencies use these types of audits to ensure that financial and technology internal controls are compliant and capable of serving the needs of client businesses. The resulting attestation report, which includes an auditor’s opinion, is used for the purpose of complying with laws and regulations, governance requirements for client’s financial statement audits, and due diligence reviews. Going forward, Kaulkin Ginsberg and CCA of A believe that investments in compliance functions will continue to grow in importance and expense allocation.

Furthermore, the Benchmark Survey saw that thirty percent of CCA of A participants filed credit reports with credit reporting agencies (CRAs) between 2016 and 2017. While the percentage of those filing reports remained constant, the cost of using credit reports by collection agencies increased by 15.7% year-over-year. When asked to explain this trend, Michael stated, “This may suggest that collection agencies are relatively reliant upon credit report data and the lower rate of filings is leading to an increased push by CRAs to charge more for access to credit reports. As such, credit reporting as a practice and expense should be closely monitored since it represents both an opportunity for operations and potential legal liability for the business.”

When asked why CCA of A decided to work with Kaulkin Ginsberg Company to provide this survey to its members, Annette stated, “We believe it’s important for business owners to establish a basis for comparison on an operational and/or financial basis to support strategic planning. By leveraging benchmark data, owners are better positioned to target significant technology investments and improve expense allocation.”

This report is thought to be extremely beneficial and will support strategic business initiatives. Please contact Kaulkin Ginsberg if you are interested in exploring a more in-depth analysis of your operation, such as financial benchmarking against comparatively sized and/or regionalized industry peer groups, by contacting hq@kaulkin.com.

11. 20. 19

Commercial Collection Agencies of America is proud to announce Altus Receivables Management and NACM Commercial Services have recently earned the industry-respected Certificate of Accreditation and Compliance.

After adhering to the rigorous requirements of the application process and onsite visit, Altus Receivables Management (previously Altus Global Trade Solutions) headquartered in Kenner, Louisiana will now be one of the newest agency members of the Association. Altus also has offices in Greenwood Village, CO, Vancouver, WA, Delray Beach, FL and East Windsor, NJ.

“We are proud to add Altus to our membership,” commented Annette M. Waggoner, Executive Director of Commercial Collection Agencies of America. “Altus is a reputable firm and its tenured leadership has served the industry impressively over the years.” The Altus staff offers in-depth experience in a multitude of industries. At the helm is Chief Operating Officer, James McDermott, a veteran in the collection space. “Jim and his team realize the platinum standard of the Association’s certification and the high regard in which it is held by the credit community,” Waggoner added.

Jennifer Walsh is the well-respected President and Chief Executive Officer of NACM-Commercial Services and oversees a long-tenured staff in collections, credit reporting and credit groups in numerous states. NACM Commercial Services is recognized as a premier provider of commercial credit management services throughout the United States. Last May, NACM-Commercial Services combined its operations with San Diego Credit Association (NACM San Diego/NACM Colorado/Pacific Southwest Credit Association – NACM New Mexico), which was actively engaged in meetings and educational endeavors of Commercial Collection Agencies of America, as a certified agency.

“We are looking forward to offering the multitude of benefits of peer agency membership to NACM-Commercial Services and are confident that their operations will fare well in this new partnership. We are proud to have them aboard!” commented Waggoner.

Member agencies adhere to requirements promulgated by the esteemed Independent Standards Board, which is charged with the creation, review and amendment of certification standards met by each collection agency member. The Board has created a superior certification program, making it the platinum standard in the industry and recognized by credit grantors worldwide. The Board, whose complexion is that of a cross-section of professionals that interact with the commercial collection and credit industries meets periodically throughout the year to achieve its goal of protecting the credit industry and maintaining the premier status of the certification.