What's it really like?
Katherine Francis works as a credit controller for Price Runner and has held her current position for just over a year.
Prior to working for Price Runner, Katherine worked as a credit controller for Environ, an environmental assessment company. She worked there for a total of four and a half years before moving on. During a typical day at work, Katherine checks the company’s bank accounts to see whether or not expected payments from both individuals and organisations have been received. If payments have been submitted as expected, she will transfer the money to the appropriate account and inform the company officials of such transactions. She also opens post and responds to any correspondence via letter or over the phone. She reads and replies to e-mails and performs credit checks prior to setting up any new accounts.
Katherine is also responsible for taking credit card payments and chasing up clients who have refused to pay their debts. She keeps employees in the operations and sales departments informed about any cap increases and also advises them about any clients who need action taken against them as a result of continued non-payment. She particularly enjoys the amount of communication she has with other people throughout a typical working day but there are several negative aspects of her job.
These include being made to feel insensitive when action has to be taken against individuals who fail to make payments. She also often feels undermined by other
employees at the company who are keen to minimise action taken against certain individuals since it may not suit their particular working ambitions. The job can also be very stressful and Katherine often feels that there are not enough hours in the working day in which to fit in everything that needs to be done.
She believes that individuals who wish to work as credit controllers should try not to take working issues to heart. Credit controllers are often the first point of contact for aggrieved individuals and employees have to become thick-skinned very quickly if they want to be successful. According to Katherine, staying patient is extremely important. It is also vital to enjoy contact with people, since this is a major feature of any working day.
With regards to career progression, Katherine would like to develop her management skills, although this may not necessarily occur within a financial working environment. She is currently studying with the Open University whilst working full-time and striking a balance between these two activities has been hard for her. Although fellow employees at her company have been understanding of her other commitments, meeting academic deadlines whilst meeting work deadlines has been tough for Katherine. However, she is keen to complete her studies and, at some point in the future, she would like to work alongside the UN or the EU with the Office for Democratic Independent Human Rights, specialising in elections and democracy. Alternatively, she would consider becoming a Human Rights Lawyer.