Cornerstone

Observations from the 2016 ACA International Convention & Expo

By Joel MilneJuly 13, 2016
 

In the last month, I have attended two major conferences – the 2016 ACA International Convention & Expo and HFMA’s ANI 2016 Convention. Cornerstone Support has been a consistent attendee and exhibitor at the ACA Convention for nearly 20 years.

 

Denver was in the midst of a heat wave with high temperatures hovering around 100°. Nearly 1,000 attendees, exhibitors and sponsors dodged 35,000 daily attendees at Denver Comic Con which was meeting concurrently in the Denver Convention Center.

Make believe characters may have been on the minds of many in Denver that week, but those attending the ACA Convention were there for more serious matters. Legal, compliance and regulatory issues once again monopolized the sessions. More than 25 sessions dealt with at least one aspect of these issues. Don’t expect any letup in this focus on compliance, especially with the clouds of uncertainty surrounding pending changes to TCPA, FDCPA, FCRA and the continuing onslaught of new state regulations.

One of the big announcements that immediately preceded the ACA Convention was the acquisition of Columbia Ultimate by Ontario Systems. Both companies had large exhibits that were side-by-side in the exhibit hall. It was quite a sight to see Ron Fauquher and Fred Houston making the rounds together as partners instead of intense competitors! This marriage brings together two of the largest and most respected collection software firms in the industry. Even so, I counted 16 additional collection software companies in the exhibit hall! Keeping pace with all the regulatory and compliance requirements is going to be a daunting task for many of these firms. I think you can expect to see more consolidation in this part of our business, not just among collection agencies that are finding that the costs of compliance are making it increasingly difficult to compete.

Keeping pace with all the regulatory and compliance requirements is going to be a daunting task for many of these firms.

Here are some of the comments and questions we fielded during the conference:

“Our agency has limited resources to tackle all the compliance issues we now face. It may make sense for Cornerstone to take over our licensing so we can focus on more pressing problems.”
“My clients want greater protection from vicarious liability. We’d like to take a closer look at your E&O and cyber liability coverages. Can you evaluate my current policies and give me a quote?”
“Several of my larger clients are starting to incorporate compliance scoring as a part of their vendor management. What’s involved in this? They’re telling me that future business will be determined more by my relative compliance score than by the amount of my recoveries!”

Sound familiar? Do you have similar needs or questions? Let us know how we can help.

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