Verifying that their payment has arrived is the most common question from customers to Intrum Justitia’s support staff in Sweden.
Intrum Justitia’s customer support call centre in Gothenburg on the west coast of Sweden handles a staggering 45,000 calls a month from customers who need some sort of assistance relating to debt collection.
“But even so we manage to answer 92 percent of the calls within two minutes,” says Malin Hestner, Operations Manager for Customer Support.
The most frequent query the call centre handles is to check if a payment has arrived and been booked properly followed by customers that have received a demand letter and call to say that they have already paid and want to make sure that the added reminder or collection fee is waived.
“Other common questions concern instalment plans and how you apply for them and we also often have people asking about the Enforcement Authority, how they work and how to avoid ending up on the register,” says Malin Hestner.
Many of the calls can be very sensitive and emotional from people who simply have no means of paying their bills and may be facing a suspension of services such as electricity, the telephone or the internet.
“These calls are always difficult and must be dealt with in a humble and responsive manner. We don’t have any mandate to alter or write off debts but try to give advice,” says Malin Hestner.
The call centre has 30 full time employees and a pool of 25 part-timers that help out during peaks around pay-days and long week-ends. They connect with clients via phone or mail and from June 1 there is also a live online chat option.