I spoke to a Michael, a mortgage adviser, yesterday who had been in the industry for about 20 years and had just joined one of the big banks. I asked him what he thought about the MMR and the additional pressures that it would place on the advice process.
His main concerns as a branch adviser were of customer service and compliance. After the MMR almost all mortgages would have to be advised and his concern surrounded the delivery of that advice.
He explained that the situation is fine when there is a remote relationship between the client and a full and bustling call centre when every call is answered quickly and enthusiastically. However the branch experience can be very different and he’d already experienced the situation where a potential customer was turned away because he was already with a client. This doesn’t happen all the time but he was very aware that the unpredictability of when a customer walked through the branch door meant that it was challenging to ensure that someone was always on-hand to help.
This isn’t a situation that’s unique to his branch or his company and it’s easy to see how it this issue could be replicated in branches throughout the country.
The solution is actually pretty simple if branches adopt a screen sharing solution. As long as the customers has access to the internet via a kiosk or tablet in the branch they could receive appropriate advice both visually and over the phone from an adviser in a call centre or even another branch. Of course if the branch adviser is available they can see the customer but having a remote solution means that there will always be someone available to help. Additionally, he could see the situation where he could support customers in other branches simply and effectively without the time and expense of travelling between branches.
Another big plus of using screen sharing for him was the fact that the entire advice process including sharing of documents would be time and date stamped and stored as compliance evidence. He is an experienced and qualified adviser but he is also aware that it is becoming increasingly important to not only do the right thing but prove you’ve done the right thing. The pressure on advisers within a branch network is set to grow and if a seasoned professional like Michael is concerned then this is a very real issue that needs to be addressed.
Author: Richard Hurst https://twitter.com/RichardCHurst