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STRATMOR Group: The Crucial Questions to Ask When Designing a Winning Mortgage Customer Experience

GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo., – September 27, 2022 – Can the mortgage business be compared to a NASCAR race? The analogy fits surprisingly well, according to STRATMOR Group’s September Insights Report.  In “The Essential Questions for Designing a Race-Winning Mortgage Customer Experience,” STRATMOR Group Customer Experience Director Mike Seminari provides answers to the critical questions that will help mortgage lenders beat their competitors in the race to provide borrowers a world-class customer experience.

“There are a surprising number of parallels between NASCAR and mortgage lending,” Seminari says. “Originators are not unlike the ‘rock star’ drivers. Processing managers are like the crew chiefs keeping the pit crew processing team accountable to high levels of performance. Mortgage executive leaders are the savvy owners, steering through the big picture. Perhaps the strongest parallel is the idea that victory is won by the whole team and not by any individual.”

It all starts with a compelling Customer Experience (CX) vision and a comprehensive strategy, according to Seminari, and that requires lenders to ask themselves some tough questions.

“A successful CX strategy begins with a well-articulated customer experience vision,” he says. “Employees want to follow leaders who have a passion for providing excellent customer service, but you can’t just assume that everyone knows what your vision is.”

Formulating their vision requires an honest assessment of how the lender is performing currently. This, Seminari says, leads to more questions. For example, lenders need to ask themselves: “Where are our soft spots?”

“If you’re not asking the questions and collecting the data, you’re missing major opportunities to course correct,” he says. “Going deeper with your customer experience survey questionnaire will lift the hood, so to speak, and expose any leaky hoses.”

One problem is that most lenders don’t have enough detail in their customer experience surveys, so they aren’t gathering enough information to formulate accurate plans for realizing their vision.

“Deep-dive data is essential to creating visibility, which leads to widespread awareness, which leads to change,” Seminari says. “The mechanisms for parsing the data into easily digestible and compelling segments is crucial here. Lenders need visibility into processor and even underwriter performance as related to the overall customer experience. Sound complex? It is.”

But having data on the operation isn’t enough. Lenders also need benchmarking data to set their own performance goals, something Seminari says many lenders don’t have, even though it is available in the market today. Having the right information allows the entire mortgage team to operate like a high-performance NASCAR pit crew.

“If mortgage lender employees can work together like a top-tier NASCAR team, they just may be able to edge out the competition in this race of dollars and basis points,” Seminari says. Find the entire article in this month’s Insights Report.

A second Insights article by STRATMOR Group Senior Advisor Sue Woodard, “Customer Experience on the Front Lines: Turning Vision into Action,” explores how, with a shared vision and by creating awareness and accountability across the organization, lenders can create a superior experience for the customer. Woodard suggests three steps lenders can take now to drive home a customer experience vision.

“It’s all about taking the sentiment or words about creating a vision of excellent customer experience – and putting those words into real action on the front lines, where they really matter,” Woodard says. “We all say we want ‘customers for life’ but what does that mean to loan officers who are more concerned about winning that next purchase deal than the long play of a customer who might move or refinance in five to seven years? Changing culture requires a shared vision as a starting point.” Read the entire story in this month’s report. Click here for the September 2022 edition of STRATMOR’s Insights Report.

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