British Gas & Third Party Debt Collection: A Salutary Lesson for All? 

The shocking exposure of the long-standing collection and enforcement practices by a third-party debt collection agency left me reeling…and then thinking. 

Throughout my career, outsourcing some types of debt to 3rd party collection agencies has been standard practice across the sector. Many tenants lose the protection of the high standard of ethical collection processes associated with the skilled in-house income teams as soon as they acquire the prefix ‘former.  A label that often automatically determines a different route for the collection process.

The third-party agencies used and the individuals they in turn contract to undertake the ‘customer contact’ elements of the process, are more often than not only paid on debt collected. This drives behaviors different to those in our in-house teams, operating to standards within direct our control. 

Technology, when used smartly can create capacity within skilled teams – maybe it’s time to bring back the former tenanst arrears in-house – and know our ethical standards apply across the board.

Julie Lorraine