Customer Experience or CX is the latest buzzword in the mortgage ecosystem. Many modern-day mortgage businesses have started realizing the importance of delivering highly relevant and personalized experiences to borrowers.
But if we look at numbers, customer satisfaction in the US mortgage industry is still less than optimal. According to a survey conducted by McKinsey, only 42-67% of borrowers were happy with the customer experience delivered to them by the mortgage providers. As a result, traditional banks lagged behind their new-age competitors by a margin of 20-30%.
The above study was conducted in 2019. A lot has changed in these 3 years. The industry faced fresh challenges in the form of refinancing hassles and increased servicing costs coupled with the pandemic outbreak. All of these negatively impacted the CX levels during the 2020-21 period.
But then again, for CXOs(Customer Experience Officers), these numbers represent an opportunity. They indicate that there is a scope for improvement as far as CX is concerned. By proactively employing various technologies and strategies, CXOs can counter these challenges efficiently while boosting the overall operational efficiency.
Let’s look at some of the strategies that CXOs can employ to improve the operational efficiency of a mortgage enterprise.
#1 Provide a One-stop Solution
One of the biggest challenges that borrowers face is the fragmented nature of their customer journey. It consists of multiple touchpoints, channels, and stakeholders, making the entire process complex and tedious. And as a result, homebuyers are often left stranded with long, unforeseen delays.
To counter this challenge, CXOs must devise a one-stop solution by consolidating all the services that the customer may require during the borrowing process. A simple example would be having a web application to fill the loan application and attach the documents. The application should be responsive to let customers pay the processing fee on the go. Lastly, it should have a chatbot to answer any queries of the customers.
This way, not only the customers will enjoy the experience, but the borrowing process will be simplified and more efficient.
#2 Build a 24/7 Support Team
The main responsibility of a CXO is to build organizational strategies that deliver differentiated brand experiences for driving customer loyalty and advocacy. However, in the mortgage industry, it is extremely difficult to execute these strategies. Purchasing a home and obtaining a mortgage are daunting processes, especially for the first-time buyers from the millennial and Gen-Z segment.
Nevertheless, CXOs can help these buyers overcome this hurdle by building an efficient customer support team who are constantly available and responsive. With a 24/7 support team, CXOs can build a sense of trust between the lender and the borrower, which will translate into a positive customer experience. Also, when there is a regular line of communication, the lending process becomes incredibly simpler as the mortgage providers can easily obtain the required documents, approvals, and service fees. In short, a massive improvement in operational efficiency.
#3 Drive Automation
Automation is the go-to solution for every business looking to improve efficiency, reduce paperwork, and cut down costs. The rule applies to a mortgage enterprise as well. Automation is also extremely beneficial for boosting the customer experience. Here’s how –
The major friction in the customer journey is due to delays and errors arising from manual processes. Automation can eliminate them and ensure a standardized and accurate workflow while maintaining transparency.
The rule of thumb for CXOs is to drive automation for processes that are frequent, high volume, and low on variability. For example, lenders can send out automated thank you mails after receiving the mortgage application. But instead of using generic and repetitive emails, automation can ensure that each customer receives personalized emails that help the overall customer experience.
Likewise, data entry, transferring information between systems, routine service updates, and documentation are some of the processes that you can automate to enhance the operational efficiency of the enterprise.
And those are the steps a CXO can take to increase the operational efficiency of their mortgage enterprise. Apart from these, CXOs can also adopt cloud-based technologies due to their extensible architecture, and their ability to be fundamentally agile, helping them make quick strategical decisions to improve operational efficiency.