South Africa, like many developing countries has experienced a high number of the negligent debtors in the collection’s industry. The focus of this study is on describing the requirements in the training of debt collectors and how it benefits the industry, while suggesting the strategies for improving debt collecting training in South Africa.
A theoretical survey and a literature review were undertaken to identify the elements involved in training debt collectors and how it benefits the industry. Firstly, as the content to be presented is debt collection and is not generic in nature, the purpose of this literature study includes the investigation and identification of the elements involved in debt collection services. This includes, inter alia, the study of computing technologies, identification of a design strategy for debt collection systems and identification of a model to define distributed objects as an object – oriented view of distributed systems.
This investigation is necessary, since debt collection training and design are important aspects of any lending institution system, as it provides a framework for accountability. The principle method of investigation in this study was a quantitative exploration of assessing the degree of how the financial lending institution benefits through the training of debt collectors in South Africa , Johannesburg . The study used the questionnaire approach, particularly closed ended questions . 60 respondents were targeted for the study. The 25 – 34 years category was represented by 26% of respondents meanwhile the 35 – 44 years group was represented by 11%. These statistical patterns show that most individuals who participated in the study are younger than 25 years whilst age brackets such as 44 – 54 years had very few individuals.
Younger employees may not have the necessary institutional memory to understand all the ramifications involved in debt collection business which calls for training and experience. The results showed that fewer respondents in key management positions such as Branch managers and Training managers are few in number as a result there was a gap in terms of proper training and guidance.
The implication is that, for every debt collection sector, leadership training should be central. This is because leadership basically deals with the human relations where problem solving, communication and decision making are promoted and cultivated. In debt collection decision-making is demanded. The study indicates that highly effective leaders know many forms of decision-making and are situationally sensitive in their selection of a particular approach to decision-making . They are thus very analytical and rational in the way they perceive and perform their functions. The study found that the participation of debt collectors in training could be enhanced by means of management involvement, effective mentoring, programmes for the preparation for leadership, and the assurance of job security. The study brings about an additional importance and understanding of debt collector’s training, especially towards facilitating future research on leadership in the debt collection business. The recommendation for the study was for debt collection organizations to quantify their training of staff and ethical practices in such a way that they can evaluate progress towards integrated debt collector training and the zero misconduct strategy.