The specialist lender has run tests of the technology in the last few days and said it was confident of its ability to make this “swift change” to its business model.
It installed a new ‘8×8’ telephony system this week, which allows its telephone business development managers to function as normal in a ‘virtual call centre’. The system has been set up for telephone mortgage lending administrators too, so they will continue to be able to support enquiries on new and existing cases.
Vida asked its staff to work from home for two days; the first day to test the general network connectivity and resilience and the other to test the functionality of the ‘virtual call centre’.
Its technology platform and telephony system is expected to allow its telephone business development managers, field-based key account managers, underwriters and support staff to continue to support intermediaries through the application process while working from home.
Vida’s employees will be working remotely from 16 March to minimise the risk of catching and transmitting COVID-19.
Intermediaries can still submit cases as normal. Vida said the only noticeable difference would be that its key account managers will no longer hold face-to-face meetings, instead working exclusively by telephone and email until further notice.
They will also not attend roadshows, conferences or other industry events until Vida feels it is responsible for them to do so.
Louisa Sedgwick (pictured), managing director mortgages of Vida Homeloans, said: “Vida is well versed in helping customers in challenging circumstances and is able to react quickly to the situation the mortgage industry now faces.
“Since our technology and telephony systems enable our staff to work remotely in this seamless manner, it makes sense for us to do so immediately, until further notice. We thank our partners for their understanding and we wish the whole industry well for the next few weeks as it faces the challenge of the coronavirus.”