Scotland - Telephone Debt Collection

Dates TBC

A Half Day Workshop delivered virtually through Microsoft Teams

The coronavirus pandemic has had serious financial implications for many households some of which find themselves with debt problems for the first time. As local authorities and other organisations continue their recovery procedures, a key objective will be to make payment arrangements based on ability to pay. To achieve this, direct verbal contact with debtors will be critical. Staff will, therefore, need to be equipped with the necessary communication and negotiation skills. 

Meaningful payment arrangements can only be made once the debtor’s financial circumstances are understood. This requires a structured approach to conversations, not only asking the right questions but doing so in the right order thus ensuring the necessary information is obtained, not just the details the debtor might want to provide. 

This course will examine the different financial consequences of the pandemic and cover the interpersonal skills and behaviours required to maintain control of conversations and negotiate effectively including managing confrontation. 

The course is relevant to managers involved in the development of collection strategies as well as all those who deal directly with debtors on the telephone or face to face. 


The course leader for the workshop is Allan Traynor. Allan is a past national President of the IRRV, and has extensive experience of revenues administration and collection in local government. Allan has delivered many collections and recovery related courses.

This a half day course aimed at raising the awareness of effective recovery action in providing telephone service excellence and improved performance in collecting debts and reducing arrears. It will provide an understanding of the key features and skills required to achieve successful payment negotiation with debtors using the telephone. 

Who should attend?
All staff involved in the negotiation of payment arrangements with debtors including managers responsible for revenue collection.

Course Content
Module 1: Telephone call structure and etiquette
Power of the telephone, communication skills, call structure for both inbound and outbound calls
Module 2: Negotiation skills and behaviours
Features of assertive, aggressive and submissive behaviours, debt negotiation strategies
Module 3: Obtaining information
Questioning techniques, establishing debtor ability to pay
Module 4: Controlling calls and managing confrontation
Techniques to maintain control, dealing with difficult debtor behaviour

Learning Outcomes
Personal development of communication, negotiation and listening skills
How to maximise debtor contact using the telephone
How to manage different debtor behaviours

Course Timetable
9.30 Introduction and course objective
9.35 Module 1: Telephone call structure and etiquette
10.30 Break
10.40 Module 2: Negotiation skills and behaviours
11.40 Break
11.50 Module 3: Obtaining information
12.20 Module 4: Controlling calls and managing confrontation
12.50 Course ends
NB – times are indicative only


£125 plus VAT IRRV Personal Member Rate (valid for Individual Members only)
£155 plus VAT Forum/Organisational Rate* (all Scottish LA's have IRRV Forum Membership)
£185 plus VAT Non- Member Rate

Special Member Offer: 3rd delegate gets 25% Reduction 
*This offer is available to organisations sending 3 or more delegates and attending from the same organisation. Bookings must be made at the same time. It will be applied to the cheapest rate. At least one of the delegates must be a member of the Institute in order to receive this discount or alternatively, the organisation must subscribe to either the Forum Service or Organisational Membership Service.

For details on how to become a member click here.


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Enquiries can be made by email to or by telephone 020 7691 8987.

Please note in order for your booking to be processed you must have a purchase order number.

Programme Changes And Cancellation / Rescheduling Of Events

The Institute will make every effort to give delegates as much notice as possible of any programme changes or the cancellation / re-scheduling of an event. However, it does reserve the right to make changes to advertised programmes and to cancel / re-schedule events. In the unlikely event of an event being cancelled / re-scheduled, either a full refund will be made or alternatively, any fee paid will be credited against a future booking.

VAT And Cancellations

VAT will be applied at the current rate. Cancellations two weeks before course date will be charged at 50%. Cancellations after this date will be charged at 100%. A substitute attendee is allowed at any time at no extra cost.

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