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How to Become a Consumer Credit Manager

Career News January 17, 2014

Do you work well with people and even better with numbers? Working in credit requires that you are able to “tell a story” of the applicants you meet, which helps determine creditworthiness. This is necessary, because there are always going to be more applicants than there are available loans. You must choose the best investments that will be ideal for your business.

Consumer credit managers oversee the entire lending process. Each customer request must be thoroughly evaluated before a decision can be made, with a careful analysis on whether or not the loan will be repaid in full. The consumer credit manager plays a vital role in increasing the revenue for the company and minimizing the losses associated with unpaid loans.

How the Position Works

The consumer credit manager reviews the initial application for a loan, as well as the underwriting for the dispersal or denial of the request. The entire loan history of the applicant is taken into consideration, including the income, level of debt within the income, and the information contained in the applicant’s loan history report. Although the consumer credit manager may work with a large team of financial professionals who handle the initial paperwork, the final decision is left in the hands of the manager.

If the consumer loan is approved, the credit manager determines the interest rate, the loan term and the maximum amount of money the bank is willing to offer for the loan. The consumer credit manager may also be responsible for monitoring the repayment process and initiating collections processes for delinquent accounts.

Schooling is Required

Typically, lending institutions desire a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance, economics, business, or a related field. Additionally, they must have at least five years of experience in a financial role, such as a loan officer, auditor or financial analyst. Occasionally, if the applicant for the job has a significant number of years working in a loan investment field, advanced formal education is not required, although this depends entirely on the policies of the lending institution.

Essential skills required for becoming a consumer credit manager are strong mathematical and analytical abilities for reading customer reviews and assessing risk levels, as well as excellent communication skills as job duties also entail interacting with customers during the application process. They must communicate well with co-workers and show effective team leadership.

Maintaining Cash Flow

The role of a consumer credit manager is to control bad debt exposure through the direct management of credit terms determined by the company ledgers, and maintain cash flow through effective collections management. The consumer credit manager will monitor the accounts receivable portfolio for economic trends and early warning signs, determine the credit ceiling and set credit rating criteria.

Consumer credit managers are in high demand by all sizes of loan institutions, companies and industries. Employers can be both national and international. The average salary for a consumer credit manager is $73,000 – $98,000 a year.

Don’t hesitate to reach out for a higher-ranking position. If you have the work experience and education, there is nothing holding you back from a better life and career!

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