WhatsApp for Debt collection

Debt collection is a tedious process that requires a lot of time and effort. Debt collection is a more regulatory and legal process. It necessitates verification of the defaulter, the reason for non-payment, when the client may pay, and other factors. It isn't easy to have completely error-free communication with customers every day.

As per IBM estimates, 50% of customer calls go unresolved or require escalation. Furthermore, studies show that the average cost per demand on phones ranges from USD 5 to USD 12. In contrast, AI-powered virtual agents bring this cost down 80% to USD 1.55 per interaction. NLP-powered chatbots are more flexible, sophisticated and interact with customers in a more personalised manner.

Digital debt collection has been the top priority for lenders for the last 5 years, with email, SMS, and voice broadcasts helping lenders reduce agent costs and time.

Lenders have long known that handling all Inbound collection interactions has an almost certain probability of payment; some tech-savvy lenders introduced virtual assistants to offer anytime help to customers e.g., FE credit has been using BankBuddy Multilingual virtual assistant to service millions of customers since the year 2020.

These interactions are now augmented by timely broadcasts on channels like WhatsApp, Zalo, Viber, etc., to persuade debtors to fulfil their payment commitments.

The next generation collection strategy involves a synergistic fusion of outbound multi-lingual messaging (speech and text) on channels like WhatsApp with inbuilt bot functions to automatically answer queries on loan transactions, outstanding balance, promise-to-pay process automation & upload proof of payment.

Here are 5 ways to boost your collection on WhatsApp :

  1. Attract loan customers on WhatsApp banking chatbot with extensive functions for frictionless transactions and customer service e.g

    A. Loan contract status

    B. Loan Payment history

    C. Loan Payment schedule

    D. Request for loan closure

    E. Loan/card application status

    F. Disbursement status

    G. Refund status – Loans, Cards

    H. Loan insurance status

    I. Loan top-up application

  2. Send bucket/risk-based personalised messages for collections with a clear call to action, e.g., a Digital promise to pay on WhatsApp.
  3. Use voice snippets and a multilingual interface to expand the message's reach across literacy levels.
  4. Move away from physical voice calls for routine reminders and low-risk customers.
  5. Integrate call to action and alerts to human agents for a seamless interface.
The procedure of collecting debts can be overly burdensome for financial institutions. Artificial intelligence developments can make this process easier, enable businesses to streamline their operations, and have a customer-centric focus.