Billing representatives attempts to collect money owed to their company. They keep track of customer account information, usually via computer, and how much each customer owes. They note payments that are made on time and flag those that are past due. Billing representatives often handle other tasks as well, such as answering phones, or filing and faxing paperwork.
Billing representatives work in a wide range of industries. They forward mail to clients who owe the company money, detailing how much a customer owes, what type of payment is expected and when it is due. In the event a payment is delinquent, they will attempt to contact customers via regular mail, email and especially phone. Billing representatives may also assess late fees and recommend a customer’s service be discontinued. Occasionally, they may work with a past-due account holder to work out a new, simpler payment plan.
Billing representatives must be highly organized and capable of handling many tasks at once. They need to possess strong communication skills, ably relaying important information regarding accounts to managers and customers both verbally and in writing. They should be confident and assertive when collecting, as well as professional, courteous and flexible. On top of those things, they need strong math and computer skills, considering a large portion of their jobs are centered around numbers and data entry.
Most billing representatives hold what are considered to entry-level positions that they learn while on the job, so rarely is more than a high school diploma required. Other than that, most companies are content to hire applicants who exhibit a strong work ethic, a positive attitude and an understanding of the billing process.
Opportunities for billing representatives should be plentiful for years to come, simply because companies need workers to track down money owed to them. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of bill and account collectors is projected to increase by 19 percent during the 2008 to 2018 decade--which is considerably faster than the growth rate for all other vocations.
Billing representatives are sometimes paid by commission, earning a portion of the debt they recover. Others receive a straight salary or hourly wage. Other factors include industry, experience and overall duties. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, bill and account collectors earned a median wage of $14.73 per hour in May 2008. Top earners made more than $22 per hour, the BLS reported.
- Photo Credit businesswoman image by Paul Moore from Fotolia.com
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