Utility Sector Case Study

15 June 2021


The Client

A leading UK water retailer, who are in the top three in their sector.

The Business Challenge

To provide great-value water services, our client must be effective and efficient at collecting debt, which is a major cost to all water and energy retailers.

Specific client objective was to test integrated debt recovery approach to discover if incremental net collections could be achieved.

  • Whilst the business had an effective litigation process, enforcement was via a single (well known) supplier which did not provide all the necessary operational flex or data driven approach the client was seeking. This impacted both cash flow and provided potential customer detriment
  • Additional challenge of end of treatment accounts where internal and external activity was exhausted.
  • Initial test debt value of £5.9 million spread across these two segments.

The Solution

Just was engaged to undertake a “proof of value” pilot to prove that it could generate cash from accounts where the internal and external (DCA) Dunning process had been exhausted. The commercial arrangements eliminated risk for our client as Just would only be paid for success, irrespective of the costs incurred by Just.

Just operated a full partnership approach with the client leveraging client portfolio insight and Just data & expertise:

  • Analysing and enriching the client’s data
  • Presenting our recommendations to the client for review and sign off
  • Implementing agreed strategy via specialist network of suppliers across recovery, litigation, and enforcement.
  • Return net proceeds to the client

At every stage in our engagement the client was involved in the decision-making process as to whether to proceed or not. Just is extremely conscious of our clients’ brand and reputation and has controls in place to mitigate the risk of complaints arising.

Our processes identify vulnerable customers early during the analysis phase and suppresses them prior to any activity commencing, protecting our client’s brand and reputation.

The Results

Key performance statistics for the initial tranches of accounts processed by Just are:

Segment 1 – Post judgment cases

  • £816k of debt passed to Just
  • £254k cash collected to date
  • Mid strategy segment liquidation currently at 31% (rising to 57.9% on closed cases)

Segment 2 – end of treatment accounts which had already been through full internal and third party (DCA) collections and recoveries activity

  •  £5.1m of debt passed to Just
    • Suppressions of £1.2m identified (insolvent, deceased, vulnerable, un-economic)
    • 60% success rate on trace segment attempts (new address details found associated with £2.5m of debt)
  • Multiple strategy-segments created, and treatments applied:
    • Managed through recoveries, legal and enforcement process
  • Mid strategy (debt still in placement 1) liquidation at 4.6%with expectation of final liquidation range of 9-14%

The Future

The client now has a robust process in place that delivers cash collections for debts that previously remained both unworked and uncollected.

Having integrated litigation and enforcement as part of the Dunning process also enhances earlier collections. Customers who can afford to pay are more likely to pay when they recognise that the organisation is prepared to litigate and enforce the payment of debts for the services they have delivered. This accelerates and increases cash collection, which is ever more important in the current economic climate.

As a result of the success of the “proof of value” pilot the client has extended their relationship with Just into BAU and forward flow.

Just are the UK's first integrator for litigation and enforcement. Driven by data and analytics we provide our customers with a safe, accessible and intelligent way to enforce debts across the UK responsibly.

If you want to know how we can help improve your liquidation rates, driving customer resolution and debt reduction through the use of data enrichment and analysis, talk to us about our ‘Proof of Value’ pilot.