Tate and Kirlin Associates

Tate & Kirlin Associates is a national provider of accounts receivable management services. The company recognizes the importance of this role in the financial realm and strives to provide the highest level of collection services. Trust and respect are key components of this process and are necessary for developing long-term business relationships. Hence, Tate and Kirlin’s significant emphasis on compliance and customer service.

Tate and Kirlin Associates Collection Company Logo

Industry: Collections 

Use Case: Compliance and Revenue Generation

Balto Environment: ~ 20 Collectors

The Problem

  • “We needed to be compliant on every single phone call that we made.”

  • “We need certain things to be said on every call.”

  • “Its easy to be blamed, whether you did do it or you didn’t do it.”

Compliance is easier said than done. As collectors get comfortable in their role, their natural aptitude and experience creates a fluency in the call which can lead to not following the script. With average tenure hovering around seven years, it’s understandable that collectors can fall into a rhythm. Tate and Kirlin noticed that these rhythms were leading to lower compliance scores, resulting in growing legal fees. Obviously, something had to be done.

“It all started out with compliance; we needed to be compliant on every single phone call that we made.”

With that statement, Bob Dougherty, VP of Operations at Tate & Kirlin, echoes the sentiment of many in the collections arena. Compliance is always a problem, and often a costly one. Tate & Kirlin found a solution, and it provided dividends in some unexpected places.

The Solution

 Boost Compliance with Scripting

The feature that brought Tate and Kirlin to Balto was the easy-to-use scripting function. Balto prompts collectors with specific script points and lets them know when those points have been covered. Tate and Kirlin saw these prompts as a possible compliance solution. The company sat down with the Balto implementation team and started discussing usage specifics. They told Balto exactly what needed to be said on every call, and what the collectors had to cover in order to stay compliant.

It was with some trepidation that Tate and Kirlin started this process. One of their key concerns was the ability of Balto to accurately identify the collectors’ statements. The company had experience with previous software that was not accurate in its transcription, and actually increased manager involvement by having to address inaccurate renderings. With Balto that turned out not to be a problem. Balto not only achieved higher than 99% accuracy, it could also work with accents. This accuracy led to collectors being properly promoted with script points and significantly increasing their compliance scores. Currently, compliance scores are above 95% and legal fees have been drastically lowered.

Unexpected Benefit: Increase Revenue Dramatically

One of the unexpected benefits of utilizing the Balto AI was a sharp increase in revenue. The instant Balto feedback that Tate and Kirlin collectors received actually changed the way they conducted calls. The constant prompting led them to take an active role in the call and start managing the conversation in ways that were new to the team.

Collectors took control of the conversation and began to ask the kinds of questions that led to deeper discovery. Instead of moving on from callers who wouldn’t initially pay, the collectors asked questions that encouraged productive negotiation. By being given very specific direction from Balto, collectors felt empowered to own the process.

This call management led to increased revenue. By working out more payments in ways that were comfortable for the consumers, monthly collections increased by 15%. For specific clients, the increases were even more dramatic. The combination of prompting and negotiating skills proved to be the “secret sauce” and one client experienced a gain in average payments from $86 to $331!

“It was just a different way of having a conversation. Instead of being one-sided, it’s now a two-way conversation.”

Bob DoughertyVice President of Operations, Tate and Kirlin

“Balto allowed us to definitively show our clients what they wanted and how we’re delivering that. They loved that about us.”

Bob DoughertyVice President of Operations, Tate and Kirlin

The Implementation Process

Another concern of Tate and Kirlin was implementation. AI software often has a drawback in that it provides powerful results for its specific application,  but it may not necessarily mold well to the needs of the company. Balto’s versatility went a long way in rendering that a non-issue. At the implementation meetings, the Balto team listened and gained an understanding of what made Tate and Kirlin unique.

These discussions eventually made their way into the collector playbook. General responses became standard prompts, and client-specific interactions were rendered as virtual post-it notes. With the help of these notes, collectors had the relevant information at their fingertips, and they were able to inform customers with salient information. This led to increased audit scores and greatly improved the client relationship.

The Result

Managers and collectors are now working together to raise compliance and increase revenue. The Balto scripting allows collectors to feel confident in their performance, and it gives managers the tools necessary to validate those results.

Revenues are up by 15% and this is due to Balto’s active call management, customer-specific negotiating prompts, and collector engagement.

100% of Tate and Kirlin collectors now use Balto. Although the initial trial started out with just a few seats, the results were obvious and the collectors themselves asked for the implementation.


Increase in Monthly Collections


Increase in Collector Compliance


of Collectors Using Balto