Case Study: How ECM Agility Helped Overcome the Impacts of COVID-19
Responding to COVID-19 has presented challenges to all businesses, whether in adopting large-scale work-from-home strategies or creating effective workarounds to ensure office-based applications can be used from the sofa.
Some organizations have been further challenged with situations that have forced them to raise their game significantly, to continue to support their customers going through their own challenges.
At the recent Mitratech Virtual Summit: The Future of Compliance, Dan Condon, Head of Business Transformation at Family Building Society, showed everyone attending how his team was able to use Enterprise Content Management (ECM) technology to meet a significant challenge for the business with great success, creating significant value.
The challenges faced by the Society?
Part of the UK Government’s response to the COVID pandemic was to offer mortgage payment holidays to individuals struggling with payments as a result of the lockdown. Since its launch in late March, 2020, over 1.9 million UK mortgage holders have taken advantage of the scheme so far. While a boon for consumers, it has presented mortgage providers with significant challenges in its scale, scope, and speed.
The first challenge for the Family Building Society? The fact that their offices were closed and their 200 staff had to work from home, like everyone else.
The next challenge was to work out how to best capture and consolidate their customer information, mortgage information, financial data, and approvals processes. The Society had to create a system, largely from scratch, to help their customers understand their options under the payments holiday. It then had to capture and consolidate their responses to make sure their needs were fully met, as part of the Society’s focus on customer service. That’s also a regulatory requirement in Britain for a mortgage provider.
A further challenge was that the details of exactly how the mortgage holiday scheme would operate were changing even after launch; such was the fluidity of the situation everyone was confronting.
Putting a past-proven tool to new work
Family Building Society had been using Mitratech’s DataStore solution for several years, and had been extending its automated workflow capabilities to some of the Society’s paper-based mortgage processes.
When the holiday scheme was announced, Dan and his team quickly realized that the solution could be quickly adapted to provide a platform that would meet the needs of the Society, its customers and its regulators.
They worked with their IT, marketing, customer service, and compliance teams to create a central repository of customer information using DataStore. Some of its contents? Property information, mortgage product information, outstanding balance metrics, and customer interest rates, for example.
This could be accessed via automated workflow capabilities by customer service teams, who then used the data to contact mortgage holders by letter to outline the options open to them. The same workflow capabilities were then used to capture case information as customers responded, whether by phone, online, or mail.
Letters had to the outreach tool because they were typically the favored communication method for the customer profile. These mortgagees liked to talk to a customer representative to discuss their options with the letter in front of them. This high standard of personal service is core to the Society’s value, and how it differentiates itself.
So far, over 1,000 of the Society’s customers have taken advantage of the scheme, obtaining relief when it was most needed.
A dashboard-empowered perspective
As well as enhancing the Society’s customer service at a difficult time, the automated process provided via DataStore ECM provides a management and compliance dashboard that allows senior management to have a perspective – at a glance, in real time – of how the scheme is working, and how issues and risks are being addressed.
For the Society itself, the outcome has been more than a little significant. It’s overcome a major operational challenge to drive highly effective engagement with its customers, deepening the relationship with them, and enhancing its reputation by visibly following through on its brand values. It has also provided a very effective use case to follow for automating future processes at the Society that are currently manual or paper-centric.
Another benefit: Beyond bottom-line efficiencies, ECS automation has enabled the Society to allocate staff to other more valuable, customer-facing roles, helping to enhance customer service and write more business. The insights drawn from the collected data are also being used to refine and enhance property and customer risk profiles. That helps in development of new products, and enhances overall risk management.
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