Risk Mitigation and Compliance – Why Take a Risk?

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Jeff Stroum

Jeff Stroum

The topic of risk mitigation and compliance is always at the forefront of any contact center operations. Managing federal and state regulations has become increasingly more difficult in the past couple of years. Add that to the staggering number of requirements and subsequent reporting needs to actually prove compliance and now you have yourself a full-time job, or even a fully-staffed department.  But, of course, compliance is not your sole primary objective.  You must also develop and execute contact strategies to increase right-party contacts and, ultimately, revenue.

I recently hosted a joint webinar with LexisNexis, Best Practices for Collections Risk Mitigation, highlighting the current state of risk mitigation as it pertains to database and platform management.  It was clear by the litigation statistics that the trend of lawsuits is not going to slow.  FDCPA compliance is clearly the greatest concern, as 87% of the lawsuits filed under consumer statutes this year pertained to it. The analysis of the root problem shows a clear inability of most organizations to control functions that are necessary at the platform level; and a need for automated processes to reduce risk and error.

Are you capable of adapting to an ever-changing landscape?  Does your infrastructure give you the flexibility?  Here are some of the functions that we see as necessary to addressing the main issues of compliance, as both you and the payer base evolve with technology and regulation changes:

  • Safe Window Dialing – In the age of phone number portability – it’s extremely important to understand that the number obtained for your contact is not necessarily representative of their physical location.  Detecting these mismatches and dialing in a “safe window” is the key.
  • Phone Type Identification and Campaign Treatments – The ability to determine a phone number type allows you to select specific treatments within campaigns.  Unique to the SoundBite Engage platform, you can take a single list, split it by device type (wireless vs. landline) and then run concurrent passes with different channels – preview and dialer, for example.  This creates a competitive edge while ensuring compliance at the device level.
  • Automation Efficiency – Timeliness of data and processes relating to automation can protect you in a variety of ways.   This could be your Do-Not-Call/suppression lists, or even a mid-day scrub from a third-party provider where you have identified some risky debtors in lists that have already been loaded to your dialing platform.   This automation can also include your call history or detail export for processing on your host system.
  • Preference Management – You gain a greater and deeper understanding of your payer base and uniquely support the growing need to manage and honor evolving customer preferences, across all the communication channels – voice, text and email.  Collecting and tracking consumer opt-ins to honor permissions provides a record – which keeps you compliant with FTC regulations and leads to a path of building an opt-in database.

We understand the importance of product and development of the compliance suite, but, in addition, SoundBite has feet on the ground – working hard for the contact center industry.  We have focused our efforts in attempting to advance change in the regulations – change that makes sense for both the industry and the consumer.

In the end, we all need to be able to comply.  One of the benefits of being a cloud-based provider is the flexibility in software development and the ability to create tools that help you gain a level of control in the platform.  This will lead to risk mitigation, and ultimately, let you get back to your job at hand.

To learn more about risk and compliance from SoundBite and LexisNexis, please listen to the podcast Best Practices for Collections Risk Mitigation.

 

As a Senior Solutions Consultant in SoundBite’s Contact Center Business Unit, Jeff works directly with our clients to develop and implement communications strategies and solutions.  Jeff stresses the importance of delivering solutions that are not just functional, but streamline processes that are directly correlated to client initiatives, business acumen and strategic vision.  He plays an active role in the product, sales and marketing strategy as well as long-term positioning of the Hosted Dialer product.  Jeff has over a decade of experience in the Collections and Telco industries, most recently as a Director of Telecommunications and Quality Assurance.  Jeff can be reached at jstroum@soundbite.com

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Posted in Collections in the Cloud | SoundBite Communications, Opinion .

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