Patrick Lunsford

Patrick Lunsford

Now in its seventh year,’s Best Places to Work in Collections program recognizes the most positive workplace environments in our industry.

But far more than just an industry-wide recognition program, participants over the years have discovered the real purpose of Best Places to Work in Collections: providing the ARM industry with unfiltered insight into their own employees’ view of the workplace.

This year, Best Places to Work in Collections is sponsored by Executive Alliance, an executive search firm specializing in the ARM industry. Register now (the deadline is this Friday, July 11). Publisher Stephanie Eidelman recently made the bold assertion that “every collection agency, law firm, or debt buyer with 15 or more employees NEEDS to participate” in the program. She’s absolutely right.

As we note every year, free participation in the program entitles companies to valuable data on the way they run their businesses. But what, exactly, is available?

All participants in the program receive the Employer Benchmark Summary. This report aggregates all of the responses – organized by company size – to the Employer Questionnaire (view a sample of the questionnaire here). You can find out how your benefits packages stack up against others in the industry, benchmark employee turnover numbers, see how many other companies are hiring, and A LOT more (there are 79 questions in the Employer Questionnaire).

That is all free of charge.

Participants also have the opportunity to purchase the Employee Feedback Report. It is 100% optional and not required to participate. But it could be the most valuable investment any ARM firm makes.

2014-04-bptw-stampThe report contains both aggregated and individual responses (anonymized, of course) to the Employee Questionnaire. That’s YOUR employees talking about YOUR company. And it’s pretty straightforward (see a sample).

The aggregated data in the Employee Feedback Report benchmarks response data across the entire program, breaking it down by company size, and – most interestingly – by companies making the Best Places to Work in Collections list and those that didn’t make the cut. (see a sample of the Employee Benchmark Report) Aggregated data is also used to create the Employee Demographic Report, which tracks responses by employees based on broad demographic information and job title/role.

So this is all great, right? But what can you do with the information? A lot.

We’ve been hearing from Best Places to Work in Collection Participants for years. And we’ve noticed a trend in their comments: they’ve discovered the true “secret” benefit of participation. Many use the data to inform internal HR practices. But more and more, companies are using the data as a competitive advantage.

We also utilize this data to respond to RFPs for potential new business,” wrote one participant. “I would recommend this service to any organization that wants to improve employee engagement and identify ways to acquire a competitive edge in the industry.” Read other testimonials about the program.

You owe it to your business to at least sign up for Best Places to Work in Collections and go through the free survey and questionnaire process. But act quick: the deadline for the 2014 program is Friday, July 11.


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