National Consumer Telecom & Utilities Exchange® helps member organizations benefit from identifying high-risk consumers during the account acquisition process. Here are some results passed on to us by member companies.
CASE HISTORY #1 – WHen Good customers go bad
An energy utility company and NCTUE® member organization examined their annual write-offs over a ten-year period and discovered that 53% of all write-offs were from customers who terminated their service. After further examination, they discovered over 70% of these write-offs were current prior to the service termination and had never been in the collection cycle. Consequently, most of these self-terminating customers did not have a security deposit to offset the unpaid final bill.
The question quickly became: To where did these once good paying customers move?
This NCTUE member found that the NCTUE database provides stronger right-party contact information. They send data to NCTUE where it is matched against a database of over 325 million accounts. Once matched, the most current contact data in the exchange is returned in an electronic file. This file is downloaded into a process, which includes a series of internal collection steps:
1. Reminder letter
2. Outbound dialer call
3. Aggressive collection letter
By creating a new recovery stream, this additional skip-tracing technique played an important role in achieving record low write-offs for that year.
CASE HISTORY #2 – Member Improves Collections Efforts
For this natural gas utility, as with other utilities, the collections function is important to the bottom line. Customer account collections including managing deposits to initiate service and recovering late payment write-offs is a tough function in the best of environments. In a tough economy, the job gets exponentially harder.
Now more than ever, utility companies must have a deeper view of the customer to better determine an applicant’s credit worthiness and more tightly manage collections and account charge-offs.
This NCTUE member (a member since 2005) submits Unpaid Closed Accounts (UCA’s) and Customer Service Applications (CSA’s) to NCTUE and then receives matches on a daily basis. This enables their team to ensure there are no outstanding balances for new applicants and to use the data for skip tracing to enhance collections efforts. NCTUE provided this member immediate access to unique data on millions of consumers and the most up-to-date, right-party contact information available on delinquent debtors.
For some organizations, the obstacle to joining the exchange can be to assimilate the internal resources needed to contribute data to the exchange. To get data from NCTUE, you must contribute data. But members such as this organization are able to clearly view the value of NCTUE: the monthly average of debt identified and transferred outweighs the expense of membership by eight times.
During the period of March 2009 – February 2010, this member utilized the exchange during the opening of nearly $3 million in accounts and matched NCTUE data to 22% of those accounts. They went on to collect more than 21% against the matches, which netted a return to the bottom line of more than eight to one.
NCTUE data is a powerful tool for member organizations, as it provides increased access to right-party contacts, billing history and payment data from the entire NCTUE membership, which includes utility, telecom and pay TV records from more than 325 million consumers.