Collections Tracking Module

The SQL*Partner Collection Tracking Module allows the Firm to identify any accounts which need special action and attention. The ability to mark those accounts by collection group and provide on-line access to unbilled, billed and collected amounts for any client, matter, invoice or group of clients is available. The Collections Tracking Module will allow the user to code an invoice, matter or client as "in collection" and establish an automatic link with the Time & Billing Module. This link will allow the user to track subsequent accounting activity (i.e., payments received, new bills issued, changes in billing, etc.) by individual item-invoice, matter or client. Each "collection bill" will be assigned to a user and an attorney. (The Billing Attorney is the default). The system tracks the original date of collection assignment, the most recent record modification date and the most recent user adding or modifying a Bill.

Each Bill has a 50-line annotative notepad to store pertinent information regarding the Bill such as contract name, phone number, etc. Up to 50 User-Defined Fields (UDFs) may be assigned to the Bill to provide additional information the Firm wishes to track which is not standard in the form. An optional file number (e.g. collections file number) may be assigned to the Bill for an alternative method of locating the Bill, in addition to client, matter, invoice.

A pool of Activities and/or Events to be scheduled or tracked during the collection process are established in a separate file.

Each activity is given a full-length description of 30 characters and an abbreviated name of 10 characters. Either the full-length description or the abbreviated name may be used to search and report on Activities/Events. The rule for handling dates that fall on weekends and holidays (before or after) is established for each Activity/Event. Date calculation is performed based on this rule.

Features of the Collection Tracking Module include:

Access to Related Data

The Collections Department, while on the phone with a client, often need to quickly review a variety of information regarding a client, matter or invoice. The Collections Tracking Module provides "hot key" access to general client/matter information (in display mode) including list of outstanding invoices, billing history, payment history, actions performed by the Collections Department and promises made by the client in the past.

Data Collections Screen Specifications

Normally a Collection Plan template is implemented at the beginning of the collection process. A Template of activities or events to be followed during the collection process may be set up to schedule phone calls, dunning letters, etc. A Template is established by grouping together two or more activities from the Activity/Event pool in the order they are to occur for a particular type of collection

Any Activity may exist in more than one template or may be repeated within a Template/Plan as many times as is necessary. Each Template/Plan is assigned its own 30-character description and a 10-character abbreviation. A Template/Plan may be linked to more than one client, matter or collection bill.

Scheduling Future Actions

A significant element of the collections process is following up on commitments made by the client and by the the Collections Department. Once a Bill is assigned to Collections Tracking, Appointments and Reminders can be scheduled in a Collections Calendar using single Activity entries and/or Templates. As Appointments are kept (or canceled), contacts are made and actions are taken regarding a Bill, notes about that scheduled Entry can be entered on the 50-line annotative notepad available with each activity or event. As an Activity/Event is completed or re-scheduled, a disposition can be entered with a few key strokes. (Entering a date into the Disposition field automatically re-schedules the Activity to the new date, making a new entry and marking the old entry as "continued".)

The collections system must include a method for recording and categorizing such commitments, and scheduling reminders for future follow-up actions. These items may be categorized as follows:

  • Phone calls/meeting for future dates.
  • Promises to pay that need to be confirmed/checked.
  • Bankruptcy court deadlines.
  • Promissory note payment dates.

History of Actions Taken

Additional Activities or Events can be entered on an as-needed basis, individually if necessary, right at the time of occurrence (phone contact, mail receipt, etc.) The upper half of the Tracking and Scheduling screen displays the balance in dispute, the Bill data and the Contact information, plus it provides immediate access to User-Defined Fields and Bill Notes with the push of a single function key. The lower portion of the screen has a "scrolling window which can be set to display the current, upcoming or historical collection Activities and Events.

A personal calendar which displays Appointments and Reminders is available for each collection person (User) by pushing a single function key from any menu. Dispositions and notes can be entered in this screen as well as personal reminders and appointments for the employee's use. The personal calendar allows the user to check out (for brief absences), check in or logout (for longer absences). Additional displays week-at-a-glance or month-at-a glance displays are available for any timekeeper.

Payments received or additional invoices sent as a result of the Collections Tracking Module are processed through the appropriate Time & Billing programs. Any change in the status of an Invoice, Matter, or Client will be immediately indicated on screens and reports in Collections Tracking. All Invoices, Matters, and Clients are maintained intact in the Time & Billing module. Collections personnel may be allowed access (view-only or full access) to Billing, Receipts, Query and Maintenance programs through menu security to enhance the research and investigative capabilities of Users involved in Collections Tracking.


The Collections Tracking Module allows for recording special notes about client and Collection Department actions. These notes should be available for printing on management reports. The notes are distinct from the general matter notes.

The Collections Tracking Module creates the following reports:

  • Accounts receivable aging
  • Cash receipts history
  • Summary of collection actions
  • Scheduled actions for collection departments

These reports should have a variety of sort criteria including:

  • By assignment
  • User ID of the Collections Department personnel assigned to the account
  • Size of total amount due
  • Last contact date
  • Defined dates for next action

Write-Off Collections Database

Occasionally, there is a need to write-off past due accounts. If there is to be a continued attempt to collect the unpaid amount, the invoice should be marked as inactive yet be accessible from the Collections Tracking Module and management reporting modules.

To reinstate (make active) an invoice which has been written off to apply monies received as a result of collection activities, is simply a keystroke for the on-line Collections Module.

More Info...

Other modules in the Financial Management Series include:

The Financial Management Series is also integrated to other Modules within the SQL*Partner system, including the following:


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