Credit Connect’s hosted it’s first-ever Online Collections Technology Think Tank last week which saw collections strategies and the impact of the pandemic discussed by eleven collections professionals from a variety of industry sectors.

The themes of business transformation, customer engagement, vulnerable customers, affordability, and open banking collections were discussed by panelists and Chair Vanessa Northam from StepChange. The insights from the event were recorded and now can be viewed by clicking on this link.

Over 200 collections professionals from banks, motor finance, utility firms,  local authorities, telecoms, media, debt collection agencies, and fintech were amongst the viewers.

Commenting on the event host Colin White Founding Director at Credit Connect said “It was great to see such a great mix of collections professional register and attend our first ever Think Tank, in addition, it was also encouraging to see so much interaction from the audience. I really enjoyed hosting this event and hearing about how technology strategies are being implemented across the industry and I look forward to hearing about future innovations in future editions of the event. We are already planning the next installment of the Think Tank for March. The event provides a great link up with the Credit & Collections Technology Awards which we will also host next month online.”

Click here to register for the 2020 Credit & Collections Technology Awards Online.

Commenting on the event  Chair Vaness Northam from StepChange said “The Think Tank provided insightful detail and experiences into an array of approaches across multiple sectors. It’s clear that some organisations are ahead of the curve in their implementation of digital collections tools and systems, and I hope those who attended will be encouraged to provide their customers with an alternative way to negotiate with their creditors when they’re struggling.”

:Open Banking provides a real ground-breaking opportunity to help consumers understand their money and spending, and I will follow the implementation of this data into the collections sector with interest.”

Panelist from the Open Banking in Collections session, Owen Edwards from JN Bank said “The Think Tank event provided a forum to ask and answer detailed, often difficult questions which can really make the difference in running an effective Collections Operation. It was a pleasure to be part of the Open Banking discussion and offer some insight into whether this is the ‘silver bullet’ of Collections for the future.”

Sally Nolan from Marston, a panelist on the business transformation session, said “It was wonderful to be invited to speak at the first think tank. Being in the industry just six months, it was a great opportunity to provide some ideas and perspectives from a newcomer, along with providing information on how my company have developed and driven their initiatives around digitalisation over the past few years. ”

“The other speakers on the day had a wealth of knowledge through their combined years of service in the industry. The insight gained will stand me in good stead for my career in all things credit and collections-based. I very much look forward to future events.”

The date for the next Online Collections Technology Think Tank taking place in March 2020 will be announced soon. If you are interested in viewing or becoming a sponsor for the next event. Then call 01622 437014 or email for more information. More online events will also be confirmed soon.


A recording of all four sessions be viewed by clicking here.

The Online Collections Technology Think Tank event was supported by CRS, Intrum and Webio.

Think Tank Poll Research round-up

What new technology has your company introduced to your collections operation as a result of the lockdown?

  • Introduced or upgraded a CRM/Collections platform 10%
  • Implemented or upgraded a dialler system 15%
  • Implemented a self-service digital portal 40%
  • Introduced digital communications channels such as SMS/Email 10%
  • Implemented web chat or chatbot facility 25%

Prior to lockdown which of the following channels of engagement did your company find generates the best results:

  • Telephone call 26.7%
  • Emails 10%
  • SMS Texts 40%
  • Whatsapp and/or conversational SMS 16.7%
  • Chatbots 3.3%
  • Other 3.3%

Since lockdown which of the following channels of engagement did your company find generates the best results:

  • Telephone call 19.2%
  • Emails 23.1%
  • SMS Texts 38.5%
  • Whatsapp and/or conversations SMS 3.8%
  • Chatbots 7.7%
  • Other 7.7%

Does your company currently use technology to help with the assessment of affordability or identifying vulnerable customers?

  • Yes 51.2%
  • No 22.2%
  • Considering 26.6%

Does your company use open banking as part of the collections process?

  • Yes 10.3%
  • No 55.2%
  • Under Consideration 24.1%
  • Not convinced that it can help with collections 10.4%

Where are you viewing the Think Tank?

  • Working from Home 81.1%
  • In the office 18.9&

Event Question round-up

What have you done differently if anything in relation to outbound usage or strategy? “Within some of our businesses in the group we have had to change our internal processes to deal with the phenomenon of ‘working from home;, as an example with our commercial collections business, we had a great deal of success with our email campaigns rather than utilising our dialler system and by adjusting our strategy this way across Europe and the UK we actually found an uplift of 15%  in recoveries each month versus the same time last year.”

“For our high court enforcement business, the lockdown and subsequent travel restrictions meant adaptation in processes, and we ultimately moved from a field-based to a telephone, SMS based function. This led to a stabilisation of payment plans and ultimately a customer-based driven focus which was to maintain a relationship with their customer and understand their particular set of circumstances which allowed our clients the application of a level of forbearance which they deemed acceptable.” -Answer from Sally Nolan- Marston