The Covid-19 pandemic, a severely constrained economic outlook, and rising unemployment have all placed immense pressure on South African businesses and consumers and their ability to pay back debt.
With a renewed focus on debt recovery processes and procedures, businesses need to ensure they have the most reliable, up to date information available to assist with recovering outstanding monies. “South Africa’s debt-to-income ratio is exceedingly high and demands an intelligent approach to debt recovery that takes into account a debtor’s individual circumstances, including their affordability and current debt levels,” says Sameer Kumandan, Managing Director of SearchWorks, South Africa’s largest and most innovative data aggregation platform that allows users to conduct live, accurate searches on individuals and companies, and in-depth KYC checks online.
“Debt recovery departments and organisations are dependent on accurate information to ensure correct communications channels for tracing purposes, and in the worst-case scenario, to deliver summons. Customised insights are particularly important when it comes to arranging payment plans which is why a one-size-fits-all approach to debt recovery is seldom effective,” notes Kumandan.
He says any business that extends credit should leverage data to devise fact-based collections strategies to manage costs and maximise recovery rates, especially given how the costs of recovering debt can escalate quickly, particularly when legal action must be taken.
The benefits of SearchWorks in the debt recovery process are numerous. The platform provides live tracing on individual and company records and batch tracing for multiple records at once. In addition, data from multiple sources can be searched per source or multiple sources at once. “Making use of a centralised data management platform ensures for a unified picture of customers and debtors. It also reduces employees’ time and effort digging into various systems when looking for further information,” adds Kumandan.
Rather than wrestle with separate, manual and time-consuming systems, organisations can streamline their processes with one easy platform. SearchWorks’ quick, simple and cost-effective checks give collections departments the edge their need to manage the financial risks and costs involved in debt recovery.
“Big data is the future of finance. In a highly competitive environment where margins are squeezed, businesses simply cannot afford not to use the right tools to get results. A collections strategy backed by data aggregation will deliver a return on investment with higher debt recovery rates, and increased profits,” says Kumandan.