Craig Davidson, president of Landry & Jacobs, LLC, a commercial and consumer debt collection agency based in Phoenix, Arizona, gave advice and tips on collecting accounts receivable

  1. The most effective collectors are those who leave emotion out of the equation, speak directly, courteously and remain accountable.
  2. Contacting the past due customer and throwing new deadlines or ultimatums do nothing to resolve the underlying debt.
  3. If you are able to reach a past due customer and have his or her attention, you must have the ability to secure the payment at that instant.
  4. Should you sign a contract with corporations or LLCs, without a personal guarantor, if the company should go out of business or dissolve, you generally have no recourse or legally responsible party to pursue.
  5. If your customers are individuals, be sure your geographical information is current at all times. Any mail correspondence sent to customers should have mail return service requested, so you are made aware of a customer moving or leaving town.
  6. One method of securing funds on a previously NSF check is a little-known process called "cashiering". If you are confident funds are good on a check, you may present it to the account holder's bank and have it converted into a cashier's check. This will immediately secure the funds.
  7. Find a strong, effective and reliable collection agency that has a bond protecting client funds. Other keys to look for when choosing a collection agency are: no up-front fees, capability to report to credit bureaus, appropriate licensing and expertise specific to your field