NobelBiz | Blog Leverage Collection Technology Experts on the Importance of Change in the ARM Industry “Lift and shift” is usually an IT term. It means moving an application and related data to the cloud without stopping the app or operations. When it comes to moving to the cloud, Accounts Receivable Management is one of the most reluctant and slow adopter industries, and we can’t stop wondering why… Is it a matter of rules and regulations? Is it a matter of technology? Is it a matter of mindsets, attitudes, and perceptions? Or maybe all of them? We wanted to find out, so we asked the industry experts during a lively roundtable webcast on change in the ARM industry. This article is all about the current state of the ARM industry: challenges, trends, but also opportunities created by the recent regulations, the technological innovations, and the shifts in behaviors, attitudes, and mindsets. But first, let's meet the experts! Harry Strausser III President of Applied Innovation Inc., is a second-generation Collection veteran that served as President of the Mid-Atlantic Collectors Association and continues to serve on the board of directors. Harry has been an active member of ACA International, Inc., where he is currently a Senior Certified Trainer. Steve Bederman President of NobelBiz, is a transformative leader, strategic planning expert, Contact Center industry innovator, and one of the most devoted friends and business partners of the Collection industry, providing cutting-edge technology and solutions for debt collection agencies and contact centers around the world. Jeff DiMatteo Founder & Partner at American Profit Recovery, is a long-time industry advocate currently serving as the President of the New England Collectors Association and a Member of the ACA International Units and State Affairs Committee. Moderator: Christian Montes Executive VP of Client Operations at NobelBiz, with over 15 years of leveraging technology and creative tactics to drive outcomes, Christian has worked with some of the world’s largest Enterprise Contact Centers, BPOs, and Global CCaaS providers. https://nobelbiz.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/05/Promo-Lift-and-Shift-the-ARM-Industry.jpg ON-DEMAND ROUNDTABLE WEBCAST “Lift and Shift” the ARM Industry: Why It Is Vital to Embrace the Change and Do It Quickly! Watch now ARM Industry Challenges: Ongoing Restrictions and Regulations In the last couple of years, the ARM industry went through a lot of change, especially in terms of debt collection rules and regulations. Regulation F, effective starting with November 2021, has been one of the biggest regulatory changes in the history of Collections and has laid the groundwork for many other major changes. For some players in the industry, these are real struggles they have to deal with to keep their businesses running, making it more and more difficult to communicate with the consumers and collect bills. Furthermore, experts in the industry also mention technological and staffing issues, personal data security, cyber insurance, working from home, and many others. “It seems to be an avalanche coming from all different directions… there are so many items to take into consideration, and it’s much more challenging to run an enterprise today than it was a few years ago.” (Harry Strausser III, Applied Innovation, Inc.) On the other hand, for other players, the ongoing regulatory changes have been the foundation of enormous potential and opportunities. They led to the adoption and implementation of new technologies, different workflows for accounts, and different ways to connect with consumers. “If they want to get a text, we have ways to text now; if they want to get an email, we have ways to email them, so these new technologies are forcing us to meet the consumers where they want to be.” (Jeff DiMatteo, American Profit Recovery) Debt Collection during the pandemic – what are the lessons learned? Another huge change that impacted the ARM industry was the Covid pandemic and the shift to working from home. Collecting debts from home was not something the industry ever anticipated, but the pandemic was the root cause of significant mindsets changes too. There was this belief that the best way a collector could be trained was by sitting next to other collectors, hearing best practices, good comments, and what is the right thing to be done at every step. But there are tools and technologies now that can help train and support your teams no matter where they’re working from. Moreover, if you’re a supervisor or manager, with the right omnichannel solution for collections, you have full control and visibility over your team’s calls and conversations, real-time data access, transactions history, reliable analytics, and reporting dashboards to track performance and make data-driven business decisions. In other words, the main lesson learned during the pandemic was that you can make debt collection from anywhere in the world and stay competitive with the help of technology. https://nobelbiz.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/FeaturedImage-HarryStrausser-Collections-FirstContactPodcast.jpg First Contact Podcast | Season 3 | Episode 1 Changing Customer Perceptions in the Collection Industry and the Rise of Self-Service, with Harry Strausser III Listen Now Trends in the Accounts Receivable Management Industry: In 2022 and beyond, local and regional governments will be the most important customers for ARM companies. The regulation on accounting data has been extended to local governments, and they will be responsible for compliance with the new standard. This means that more and more people will have access to a lot of sensitive data. The technology used by the industry has also evolved in 2022: blockchain technology is widely adopted by all kinds of industries, including ARM. Blockchain allows for better security and transparency, which is an essential feature for customers who want to see where their money goes. The rise of artificial intelligence has made it possible to collect data automatically from different sources, such as social media accounts or emails. This can help companies better understand their customers’ habits and expectations so they can provide better services. 1. The rise of digital invoicing: The rise of digital invoicing is a trend that is slowly emerging. At the moment, it is still in its early stages and has not yet reached its full potential. However, it has the potential to have a significant impact on the ARM industry. Digital invoicing will lead to new ways of managing accounts receivables and invoices, which will lead to more efficient processes and lower operational costs for companies that adopt it. 2. The shift towards integrated platforms: Integrated platforms are one of the most critical trends in 2022 because they allow companies to manage all aspects of their accounts receivable from one place. This provides them with greater efficiency and productivity because they no longer need to use multiple systems or software solutions when managing their accounts receivable management processes. 3. Cloud adoption: By the end of 2022, cloud adoption will become even more widespread than it currently is because many businesses believe that cloud-based solutions are more efficient than their on-premise counterparts. This is partly because they offer better scalability, faster deployment times, and lower costs for long-term operations. 4. Employee satisfaction It’s more and more difficult for companies today to recruit and retain good employees, not to mention to keep their motivation alive. So, we see more and more companies strategically introducing incentives, programs, and tools to reduce repetitive tasks, save employee time, improve efficiency and keep work satisfaction high. Source: debtordaddy.com Why is change crucial in the ARM industry? It’s not only a matter of being competitive as the tech-savvy competitors will be there where you’re not. It’s also a matter of being where your consumers are and answering one of their most ardent needs today: convenience. No need to mention that technology will save your business's most valuable resources: time and money! All these being said, the long-term impact on your business in terms of profitability is more than obvious. “You’re not going to survive, and it’s kind of a slow death… it’s not gonna be tomorrow, it’s not gonna be next year, but in the next 5 to 10 years you can’t sustain yourself without leveraging technology” (Harry Strausser III, Applied Innovation, Inc.) When it comes to innovation, Accounts Receivable Management is one of the most reluctant and slow adopter industries, and the reasons are multiple. Except for the compliance part and the ongoing regulations that make change difficult to implement, there’s also the fear of business interruptions and long downtime. Not to mention that many have a skewed perception when it comes to change, seeing new technology as something burdensome to implement, train, and use. But, with the right tools and a dedicated support team to guide the way, it’s as easy as a drag & drop - as we, at NobelBiz like to say. Our advanced Omnichannel Collections Communication system helps collectors save time, reduce workload and boost recovery rates - everything from a single easy-to-use dashboard. “Don’t be scared of adopting new collection technology, cause it’s the easiest thing to do!” (Steve Bederman, NobelBiz) Contact your NobelBiz experts to learn how to implement change and make technology work for your business, and let them guide you through your digital transformation journey! Work Remotely with our True Omnichannel Solution: NobelBiz OMNI+ Brings Your Contact Center into the Present You need a solution that lets you do everything remotely, from a single platform with as little effort as possible. That’s where NobelBiz OMNI+ comes in!