CAREER GUIDE FOR BILL & ACCOUNT COLLECTOR

SOC Code: 43-3011

Pay Band(s): 3           (Salary Structure)

Standard Occupational Description: Locate and notify customers of delinquent accounts by mail, telephone, or personal visit to solicit payment. Duties include receiving payment and posting amount to customer's account; preparing statements to credit department if customer fails to respond; initiating repossession proceedings or service disconnection; keeping records of collection and status of accounts.

Bill & Account Collector positions in the Commonwealth are assigned to the following Roles in the Administrative and Office Support Career Group:

Administrative and Office Specialist III

While Bill & Account Collector within the Commonwealth are all located within Administrative and Office Support Career Group, individuals may want to pursue other opportunities within the Commonwealth depending upon individual training, education, knowledge, skills, abilities, and interests.   

Other Career Group(s) that may be of interest are:

Financial Services
Procurement
General Administration

SKILLS, KNOWLEDGE, ABILITIES AND TASKS

(Technical and Functional Expertise)

Skills
Note: The technical and functional skills listed below are based on general occupational qualifications for Bill & Account Collector commonly recognized by most employers.  Typically, you will not be required to have all of the skills listed to be a successful performer.  Recruitment and selection standards for an individual state job must be based on the specific knowledge, skills, and abilities for that job as indicated in the job announcement and job description in the Employee Work Profile.

  1. Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  2. Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  3. Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  4. Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  5. Using mathematics to solve problems.
  6. Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  7. Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  8. Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  9. Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  10. Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Knowledge
Note: The technical and functional knowledge statements listed below are based on general occupational qualifications for Bill & Account Collector commonly recognized by most employers.  Typically, you will not be required to have all of the knowledge listed to be a successful performer.  Recruitment and selection standards for an individual state job must be based on the specific knowledge, skills, and abilities for that job as indicated in the job announcement and job description in the Employee Work Profile.

The Knowledge of:

  1. Principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  2. Administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  3. Structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  4. Economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking and the analysis and reporting of financial data.

Abilities
Note: The technical and functional abilities listed below are based on general occupational qualifications for Bill & Account Collector commonly recognized by most employers.  Typically, you will not be required to have all of the abilities listed to be a successful performer.  Recruitment and selection standards for an individual state job must be based on the specific knowledge, skills, and abilities for that job as indicated in the job announcement and job description in the Employee Work Profile.

The Ability to:

  1. Communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  2. Listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  3. Speak clearly so others can understand you.
  4. Tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  5. See details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  6. Read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  7. Identify and understand the speech of another person.
  8. Communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  9. Arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  10. Apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

Tasks
Note: 
The following is a list of sample tasks typically performed by Bill & Account Collector.  Employees in this occupation will not necessarily perform all of the tasks listed. 

Tasks

  1. Receive payments and post amounts paid to customer accounts.
  2. Locate and monitor overdue accounts, using computers and a variety of automated systems.
  3. Record information about financial status of customers and status of collection efforts.
  4. Locate and notify customers of delinquent accounts by mail, telephone, or personal visits in order to solicit payment.
  5. Confer with customers by telephone or in person to determine reasons for overdue payments and to review the terms of sales, service, or credit contracts.
  6. Advise customers of necessary actions and strategies for debt repayment.
  7. Persuade customers to pay amounts due on credit accounts, damage claims, or nonpayable checks, or to return merchandise.
  8. Sort and file correspondence, and perform miscellaneous clerical duties such as answering correspondence and writing reports.
  9. Perform various administrative functions for assigned accounts, such as recording address changes and purging the records of deceased customers.
  10. Arrange for debt repayment or establish repayment schedules, based on customers' financial situations.

INTERESTED?

Like people, occupations have traits or characteristics.  These characteristics give important clues about the nature of the work and work environment, and give you an opportunity to match your own personal interests to a specific occupation.  When you choose a job in an occupation that matches your own interests you have taken an important step in planning a successful and rewarding career.

The occupation of Bill & Account Collector has Conventional and Enterprising characteristics as described below:

Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Enterprising — Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.

LICENSURE, REGISTRATION, OR CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS

Generally this is not required for Bill & Account Collector positions in state government.

However certification may enhance professional development and career progression.

For information on the Certified Administrative Professional designations, contact: http://www.iaap-hq.org

EDUCATIONAL, TRAINING, AND LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES 

The Department of Labor provides the following information:

Bill and account collectors, called simply collectors, keep track of accounts that are overdue and attempt to collect payment on them. Some are employed by third-party collection agencies, while others—known as “in-house collectors”—work directly for the original creditors, such as department stores, hospitals, or banks.

Bill and account collectors are required to have at least a high school diploma. However, having completed some college is becoming increasingly important, particularly for those occupations requiring knowledge of accounting. An associate's degree in business or accounting often is required.

Telemarketing experience is useful for bill and account collectors.

Once hired, collectors usually receive on-the-job training. Under the guidance of a supervisor or some other senior worker, new employees learn company procedures. Some formal classroom training also may be necessary, such as training in specific computer software. Bill and account collectors generally receive training in telephone techniques, negotiation skills, and the laws governing the collection of debt.

The State Council of Higher Education lists many Virginia educational institutions offering programs in finance on their web site: http://research.schev.edu/degreeinventory/inventory_

COMMONWEALTH COMPETENCIES

Competencies are a set of identified behaviors, knowledge, skills, and abilities that directly and positively impact the success of employees and the organization. Competencies can be observed and measured.  When consistently demonstrated, competencies make employees particularly effective in their work.  Competencies help lay out a road map to career success.  You can use the Commonwealth Competencies to help improve your individual performance by adopting behaviors that make high performing employees successful in their jobs. In this way, you can use the Commonwealth Competencies for your further professional development.

The Commonwealth Competencies are:

  1. Technical and Functional Expertise
  2. Understanding the Business     
  3. Achieving Results
  4. Serving the Customer
  5. Teamwork
  6. Interpersonal and Communication Skills
  7. Leadership and Personal Effectiveness

The above competencies may be applied to employees throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia.  They can be rank-ordered by agencies and hiring managers to represent the needs of a specific job.  The rank ordering will change depending upon the occupation, an organization's priorities, the actual job requirements, and the supervisor's preferences. 

Career success is both about what you do (applying your technical knowledge, skills, and ability) and how you do it (the consistent behaviors you demonstrate and choose to use) while interacting and communicating with others.  Hopefully, by studying the Commonwealth competencies, identifying your developmental opportunities, and working to refine your own competence, you can take charge of your career!

For additional information about the Commonwealth Competencies go to: http://jobs.virginia.gov/cc_planningctr.htm.  For the competencies, we first list the competencies and then define each.  Finally, we list competency indicators; to describe what successful performance looks like. 

COMMONWEALTH CAREER PATH

Career opportunities in the Commonwealth are not limited to moving “up” to the next highest role and pay band, changing positions, or to becoming a supervisor.  That's because most roles describe a broad group of occupationally related positions that perform a range of work that requires increased knowledge and skills.  For that reason, Commonwealth roles describe the career paths within the same or higher-level role for the same or different Career Group.  The broad salary range and the Commonwealth's pay practices provide flexibility in recognizing career development and advancement. (Salary Structure)

For example: Bill & Account Collector

PAY BAND

PRACTITIONER ROLES

     

3

Administrative and Office Specialist III

     
         

Sample Career Path

Administrative and Office Specialist III

The Administrative and Office Specialist III role provides a career track for bill and account collector. Duties range from journey-level to supervisory level and may include report writing, collection activities and posting payments.

ADDITIONAL OCCUPATIONAL INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND AT: 

O*NET (Occupational Information Network) 

http://online.onetcenter.org/gen_search_page

Virginia Employment Commission 

http://www.alex.vec.state.va.us/

Career One Stop

  http://www.careeronestop.org/

Virginia Career Resource Network 

http://www.vacrn.net/

Association of Credit and Collection Professionals

http://www.acainternational.org