Slick lawyers and authority-charged judges often get the glory and attention in a courtroom. In fact, there’s one person in every courtroom whose job is to actually blend so well into the surroundings that it’s not even apparent the person is there. While technology has taken over many aspects of the legal world, the people who fill court reporter positions are not being replaced. In fact, the United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 10% growth in the field through the year 2022, adding about 2,000 positions to the field. Although they serve as an integral part of the court cases in which they’re assigned, members of this field and the people who place them for work experience legal matters of their own – a trend of nonpayment.
Case Study: O’Neal Probst
The O’Neal Probst Wells court reporting and videography firm has provided services to the Houston, Galveston, San Antonio, Dallas/Ft. Worth, and surrounding areas for 25 years. The organization has weathered the industry’s trend away from clickety-clackety manual typewriters to computers and everything in between, but is threatened by something else – having to do battle to get its workers paid.
“We’ve gone through several collection companies over the years,” says Linda Trombatore, O’Neal’s office manager. O’Neal works with a base of three regular employees, and considers its roster of stenographers, reporters, and videographers as independent contractors. “But we really liked the idea of paying just a few dollars for Optio’s collection strategies.”
One of the services Optio clients most frequently request is Strategy I Letters, and Trombatore notes that they have been successful at her company as well. “I used to send these kind of letters myself, but they make more of an impact and get more attention from an agency.” A benefit of Optio Solutions is how it can mold itself to just about any industry. In court reporting, for example, the payment trail may be longer than other industries. “Attorneys get billed from us, but they then pass that bill along to their own clients. This entire process may take up to three to four months, and by then, we really need to try to get our money. The sooner, the better,” explains Trombatore.
O’Neal is experiencing another of the benefits of working with Optio Solutions. “We have some really old accounts, maybe a year past due, and they’ve done really well with this type of collection process. At a certain point, an account is probably never going to pay.” Instead of a write-off, customers can enjoy an influx of revenue they thought was long lost.
A way that Optio Solutions dedicates itself to distinguishing from other collection companies is its personal involvement with clients. “Ray [Stawiarski, district sales manager] explains everything really well. He tells me how everything works, he explains all the letters, and he advises me on things like passing along payment notices sooner rather than later.”
If it all came down to numbers, it would be obvious to see that O’Neal is winning. “We’re coming up on our one-year anniversary with Optio Solutions, and can say that at least 75% of our accounts have been collected on,” reports Trombatore. “They’re doing pretty well. We will continue using them.”
O’Neal can’t avoid going to court – it’s their job. But they can avoid the lengthy and arduous task of having to take their own clients to court, and are enjoying the success that comes with a great relationship with a dedicated collections company. Find out for yourself what Optio can do for you by downloading this free guide to choosing your own collections agency: