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BillingTree’s 2015 ARM Industry Survey – Report Finds New Trends & Technology Parity

– Agency size is no longer a barrier to technology adoption

– Use of Virtual Agents/Negotiation seen increasing 5 fold and IVR is set to double

– Firms continue to cite compliance as top concern.

Phoenix, Ariz. – April 9, 2015 BillingTree® has released its 3rd annual ARM Industry Operations, Technology & Payments report finding 2015 to be the first year where no discernible difference could be seen in online payment technology adoption by agency size.  The survey also found that agencies once again cited compliance as their biggest concern, with compliance during agent-assisted transactions offering fresh regulatory challenges. Additionally, unclear guidelines on emerging technologies such as the presentation, authorization and storage of electronic documents under Reg E/E-sign continue to cause anxiety.  Over 200 ARM companies of various sizes took the survey in February 2015.

While lock boxes for cash and checks are still in use by 29.6% of respondents, the adoption of automated payment technology looks set to dramatically increase over the next year. Nearly five times more agencies plan to adopt Virtual Agent/Negotiation technology – 24% in 2015 compared with 5% in 2014. Similarly 32% of agencies are looking to incorporate Interactive Voice Response (IVR) over the coming year, nearly double the 18% in last year’s survey.  Consistent with previous year’s surveys, the industry is still divided on the practice of collecting convenience fees. Nearly half (48%) either currently charge a fee or are planning to accept them – while the remaining 52% either have no plans to or have stopped charging fees.

The survey also measured agency work by Industry revealing Healthcare to be the leading source followed by Retail, Bank Card, Auto Finance then all others. In addition, agency acceptance of medical savings and spending accounts (HSA/FSA) was gauged finding only 34% currently able to accept these cards with another 35% interested in or looking to accept in the future.  Additional revelations contained within the report include business growth strategies, compliance risk factors, service and technology needs, payment collection practices, and more.

“After three consecutive years surveying the ARM Industry, a clearer picture has emerged of what concerns agencies most including how they are looking to grow profits and where they are seeking help,” said Dave Yohe, Head of Marketing at BillingTree. “From this we foresee the continued adoption of new payment solutions, services and technology as agencies of all sizes look to increase efficiency and ensure compliance.”

Click Here to download your own copy of the 2015 ARM Industry Operations, Technology & Payments survey.

About BillingTree
BillingTree® is the leading, technology focused payment solutions company providing innovative Accounts Receivables products and services that enable organizations to increase efficiency and decrease costs of processing payments while adhering to compliance regulations. For over a decade, BillingTree has committed itself to understanding the marketplace and growing payments with technology, helping merchants accept multiple payment channels while offering comprehensive value their clients have come to rely on. BillingTree has a reputation for dependable solutions and extraordinary customer service, processing billions of dollars of payments annually through a suite of solutions and services that integrate with your company’s needs. Visit MyBillingTree.com or call 877.4.BILLTREE for payment technology that works.