DAKCS Difference in Action: Customer Insights with Stacy Willis

July 11, 2019

The DAKCS team is proud of our longstanding partnerships with our customers, some of whom have been with us over 35 years.

The core of these longstanding partnerships

Relationships with our customers are built on trust and kinship that is open and communicative.

Our Customer Insights series focuses on our champions, offering a glimpse into how they make a difference in our industry. We’ll also highlight how they have helped build the difference that makes our #DAKCSfamily one of a kind!

Meet Stacy Willis of Account Management Resources

We’d like to thank Stacy Willis, Director of Operations at Account Management Resources (AMR) for participating in the first interview.

As she steps into the limelight announcing her candidacy for ACA International Board of Directors, she continues to take the steps necessary to better the community and our industry. She is a core part of what makes the #DAKCSdifference.

Let’s dive in.

Can you tell us about your background in the accounts receivable/debt collection industry?

I began my career in the ARM industry in 1990 as the switchboard operator for Credit Collections, Inc., which was owned and operated by Jack and Jo Fudge. I gained experience in several roles throughout the company over the years and became Director of Operations in 1997.

– Professionally –

You’ve been a huge part of AMR now for close to 25 years. What is the biggest change you’ve seen in the industry? How did it impact the business? 

Compliance has definitely been the biggest change I have seen. We did a two-year contract with a consultant company and developed our Compliance Management System and it was the best thing we ever did.

While implementing our CMS, we also changed our philosophy about collections and moved away from the traditional, aggressive approach to a customer-focused, service mindset. We no longer recruit experienced collectors, but instead, look to recruit those with a customer service background.

Having DAKCS as a 25-year partner, what stands out as the most impactful benefit to you and/or your business?

I would say that we’ve been able to grow together. Over the years as our business has grown, DAKCS has been right there along with us. When an issue comes up DAKCS is always willing to entertain the idea and incorporate it into the software platform making it work the best way possible.

What strategies did you put in place to meet and adapt to the industry changes?

Under my leadership, AMR implemented a Compliance Management System. We moved away from hiring employees with a collector skill set and instead look for customer service skills.

We implemented more customer-friendly policies and procedures and changed our terminology – rather than using titles like “Collector,” we use “Recovery Specialist” and refer to “debtors” as “consumers.”

Candidacy for ACA International Board of Directors

You recently announced your candidacy as 2019/2020 ACA International Board of Directors…What was your biggest motivator to put in your application?

I wanted to pursue the opportunity to serve and give back to ACA, an organization that does so much for our industry. I also want to gain leadership experience and play a role in shaping the association’s strategic direction.

What will your primary focus be if elected as a Board member for ACA International?

My focus will be on critical policy decisions that will shape the future of the association and the industry. I am eager to have a seat at the table and join the conversation with fellow industry professionals regarding policies and regulations that affect our businesses.

Why do you feel you’d be a good ACA Board member?

My passion is not only for the industry but for the association and their mission. I believe it is time for change to be made in our industry and association. The association will benefit from a more diverse board. With my perspective and experience, I am equipped and qualified to serve and lead in this role. 

– Influences –

What technology or tools do you use on a regular basis that assist you in successfully running your business?

AMR uses a lean six sigma approach to improve efficiency and reduce operational costs.

LEAN DMAIC business improvement concept. wooden step with text define, measure, analyze, improve and control with copy space

Everyone has influencers. Who has influenced your life professionally, personally or both?

Chip Fudge, Chairman of our organization of companies. Credit Collections, Inc. was his family business and then he purchased it in 1992. He has influenced my life professionally and personally for the better.

He taught me everything I know about the business and has continued to inspire me to develop as a leader. I strive to model my career after his and continue to look to him as a mentor.

– Personally –

What is the best advice you received?

I can be whatever I want to be, do anything I desire to do…it’s all up to me.

What is the proudest moment in your professional career?

I recently graduated from Leadership OKC Signature Program Class 37. The Signature Program is a 10-month series of classes – each focusing on a different community issue.

How about in life?

I am most proud of my two daughters.

Our professional lives keep us busy… what is your favorite pastime or hobby that you like to do to help you relax and get away from the daily hustle and bustle?

I love spending time with my family. Most every weekend I am fortunate to enjoy time with my two daughters and my granddaughter. Depending on the weather, you can find us at a game or on the water.

What was the last book you enjoyed or podcast you listened to? (Even your favorite movie or TV show you binged watched?) Why was it so enjoyable?

Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg.

Sheryl Sandberg is Chief Operating Officer of Facebook and describes how women unintentionally hold themselves back in their careers. She encourages women to “sit at the table,” seek challenges, take risks, and pursue their goals with gusto!

***

We appreciate you, Stacy!

Head to LinkedIn to learn more about Stacy Willis and what she plans to do when it comes to making a change and adding flavor to create a more diverse industry.

Share this Article