As technological development races forward, it’s clear that some elements of the mortgage process are more easily automated than others.
Drawing up a shortlist of mortgage products is made easier through the use of sourcing software, for example, while uploading documents instead of posting them to the lender saves time and paper.
However, borrowers still overwhelmingly prefer the human touch when it comes to mortgage advice. They value qualifications, experience, up-to-date knowledge of service issues and, crucially, real-life reassurance about their mortgage decision.
For the time being there’s a limit to technology’s role in the mortgage process, and that’s true for intermediaries as well as the borrower.
When you have a very specific or unusual question on a case, and the answer isn’t available on the lender’s website, in order to move forward you need to check it out with a real person, face-to-face or on the phone. And you can now do this over webchat too.
Tech with a human touch
Effective technology needs to come with tangible benefits and really improve service standards. That’s why Halifax Intermediaries has focused on function over flashy features and kept experienced people at the core of its webchat proposition.
The lender’s webchat service was created to meet intermediary demand for technology that enables its mortgage experts to support intermediaries in a better way.
It focussed on removing the aspects of being an intermediary that can be frustrating – such as being stuck on the phone – while making sure the technology is quick and easy to use.
Since the service launched intermediaries have really embraced webchat, with many now saying they prefer it to using the phone.
Each month the lender supports intermediaries around 2,500 times on webchat, and feedback scores consistently top 4.5 or more out of five.
One intermediary said the webchat service ‘has become my first choice for criteria questions’. Another said its ‘quick and easy to use’ doing ‘exactly what it says on the tin’.
Here are six more reasons to consider giving webchat a try:
- Get a quicker answer to your query
No matter how hard lenders work to answer their phones quickly, they repeatedly hear from intermediaries that one of the most annoying aspects of the working day is waiting on hold for an answer to a quick query. There will always be times when the lines are busy so it’s a perfect time to use webchat.
- Support until you are satisfied
The lender doesn’t use artificial intelligence to run its webchat service. There are real people waiting to answer your queries.
Most importantly, they will stay with you until you have the answer you need and are satisfied with the response.
- No more hanging on the telephone
When you ask a question on a webchat service you will usually get a swift response.
Even better, while you’re waiting, you don’t have to listen to the dreaded ‘on hold’ music, with the receiver nestled in the crook of your neck, or worse, on speaker, distracting your colleagues. You can continue working comfortably in another tab.
- Mortgage experts not robots
The people running the Halifax Intermediaries webchat service are the same people who answer your calls, so you’ll get a knowledgeable response from someone who is fully trained and experienced.
The service has been made easy to use, both for intermediaries and for the mortgage team, so it doesn’t need to be run by tech experts. The lender decided to use mortgage professionals because that’s who intermediaries want to deal with.
- Keep a copy of your webchat
With a webchat service you get the best of both worlds – a quick and accurate response to your query that you can also keep a record of. Most webchat services, including Halifax Intermediaries, can be printed, so you can file a copy of your questions and any responses.
Record-keeping is essential for intermediaries, so being able to get lender support in real time – and having evidence of it – is hugely important.
- Longer opening hours
Lenders try to keep their phone lines open as long as possible for intermediary partners, but at Halifax Intermediaries the webchat service is open longer still from 8am to 6pm so you can get a response later into the evening.
You can also post a question outside of the service’s hours (perhaps late on a Sunday night) and the lender will pick up your query the minute the service is back up and running. Get ahead by doing this before the start of the working week, for example, or finish off some admin late at night, in the knowledge it will be dealt with first thing.
Try the Halifax Intermediaries webchat service now
For the use of mortgage intermediaries and other professionals only
If you do not have professional experience, you should not rely on the information contained in this communication. If you are a professional and you reproduce any part of the information contained in this communication, to be used with or to advise retail clients, you must ensure it conforms to the Financial Conduct Authority’s advising and selling rules. Halifax is a division of Bank of Scotland plc. Registered in Scotland No. SC327000. Registered Office: The Mound, Edinburgh EH1 1YZ. Bank of Scotland plc is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority under registration number 169628.This information is correct as of September 2019 and is relevant to Halifax products and services only.