I had the privilege of attending NCBA’s Connect Conference last week in Denver, Colorado. As a relative newcomer to default management, the conference was a wonderful way to hear first-hand about the skills, habits and pain points of many of the stakeholders in the debt collections process who were in attendance.
Here are my key takeaways:
1. The default litigation bar is comprised of people who care deeply about the consumer – and efficient exit from the default management process is pro-consumer.
One of Oliver’s core values is “We champion consumer rights.” I was lucky enough to attend a panel full of like-minded attorneys last week. During the panel entitled “How to Win or Lose in Collection Regulations” (featuring Jessica Lamoreux, Oliver’s Director of Risk & Compliance), the attorneys agreed that legislatures and regulators are focusing on medical debt, including the collection of medical debt. The panel noted that collections can be the first opportunity that the consumer has to truly understand what they owe – and why.
Medical billing is complicated. For a single procedure, a consumer can receive itemizations of benefits, preliminary billing statements, and other correspondence from multiple medical providers. Many of these documents are not bills due and owing yet, and consumers are not always able to tell what is actually owed until the account is placed for collection. Medical debt collectors are often providing the consumer with their first clear and simplified explanation of what is owed to whom.
Finding ways to streamline and simplify the process of medical debt collection serves consumers by offering what may be their first opportunity to obtain straightforward information about their medical debts.
2. NCBA members also care about employee and attorney burnout – another business problem alleviated by efficient, predictable outcomes.
The Attorney Well-Being & Mental Health panel candidly discussed the causes and effects of attorney burnout. Unsurprisingly, long hours at the office take their toll on employees’ mental health, which in turn reduces both productivity and employee retention.
Oliver is focused on providing a platform that simplifies the handoffs between attorneys, support staff and fourth party vendors. Increases in automation will reduce the amount of time that attorneys spend on administrative tasks and on rework. Allowing lawyers to focus on ‘lawyering’ and know they can rely on the Oliver process for efficient, accurate work will reduce the amount of time and stress related to moving a placement through the recovery lifecycle. This will also provide a more consistent experience for the consumer.
As COO of Oliver, I’m responsible for the efficiency of our processes. I’m also responsible for a team of human beings – attorneys, paralegals and technical experts who work in a fast-paced environment. One of our core values is “We value people,” and I’m pleased to say that our vision and value proposition to the market will further our commitment to our employees, customers and users of the Oliver platform.
Jon Stelzner is the COO at Oliver, the first end-to-end solution for lenders in the default management process. As Oliver’s Chief Operating Officer, Jon’s primary responsibility is to oversee the company’s managed services and financial operations teams to ensure best-in-class delivery. He is also responsible for Oliver’s reporting and analytics functions, giving clients actionable insight into what drives their metrics, and demonstrating the value-add that Oliver provides.