The company says the figures demonstrate broker demand for business placement outside of usual help desk hours.
In addition, the number of lenders with criteria on Knowledge Bank has increased to more than one hundred, while the number of criteria has increased from 18,000 to 28,327.
Knowledge Bank offers a criteria-based searching system, as opposed to a rate-based approach. It is operated by Compass Systems.
Atom Bank, an app-based lender, is at the very beginning of setting up their criteria on the Knowledge Bank system.
“We believe the partnership will add value, reduce time and costs, and ensure our customers get the best service,” said Maria Harris, director of retail mortgages at Atom Bank.
“The system could have an especially positive impact in the commercial lending space where criteria general isn’t published, even on lender websites – and applications tend to be approved on a case by case basis,” she continued.
However, Harris thinks that criteria based systems aren’t replacements for rate based methods, but complements: “Both need to be done side by side to show that the customer has had the right advice based on their individuals needs, and that they have chosen the best product to fit their criteria,” said Harris.
“Looking into the future, though, you could envision a world with open APIs where you could see the rate and criteria results side by side,” Harris added.
Broker Malcolm Davidson, director of UK Moneyman, also commented: “Often, you’ll have a good instinct of where the case is going to go, and Knowledge Bank can be a good tool to back up what you’re thinking.”
“But it really comes into its own when you have multiple factors in the same case,” said Davidson, “what Knowledge Bank will do is allow you to select multiple criteria – and although you still need to contact the lenders to check if the information is correct – it steers you in the right direction in terms of which lenders you can rule out and which ones might consider the application.”
Designed by peers
Davidson continued: “It’s good to have a tool that’s designed by our peers – it’s a bit like Wikipedia where brokers have the opportunity to add things and give feedback and it’ll only get better as more lenders communicate their criteria to Knowledge Bank.”
Nicola Firth (pictured), chief executive officer at Knowledge Bank added: “We have been over the moon by the number of lenders wanting to put their criteria on Knowledge Bank. The number of brokers looking to place business outside of normal working hours shows they have been justified.
Firth continued: “Within a three-month period, there have been 1,098 occasions where brokers were placing cases out of hours where, had they just been reliant on speaking to business development managers or help desks, they would have had to wait until the following business day to get the answer. Instead these brokers were able to crack on and place the case and start on new business the next day.”