How to put customer engagement and financial wellbeing at the heart of your loan and collections process

Over the past three months many retail borrowers have needed urgent help with debt and loan repayments. According to UK Finance, the number of mortgage payment holidays granted by lenders has reached 1.9 million since the scheme launched in March. Each customer has deferred an average repayment of £755 a month, it says. One in six mortgages are now subject to a payment deferral and UK Finance says lenders are now focused on helping customers to consider their next steps.

Banks and other lending institutions have been overwhelmed by applications for mortgage and loan holidays, debt rescheduling and personalised repayment plans. While lenders have done their best to meet this sudden new demand, applications have had to be processed digitally, often by staff working from home. This is a huge practical and logistical challenge. Negotiating a balance between treating customers fairly and managing risk and reducing losses has become a priority for lenders. The challenge is to protect the balance sheet while increasing the quality of relationships with retail customers. 

The current situation is a great opportunity for financial services companies to provide customers with the financial relief they need and deserve. By creating a process which is individual and seamless for the customer, lenders can demonstrate that they understand their customers’ needs and are with them for the long term. They also need to demonstrate to regulators that they are treating their customers fairly and acting in a compliant manner while under tremendous time pressure.

Failure to act in accordance with these rules can prove costly and can potentially damage your brand. Building a fast solution that works is a requirement for many of the lenders we have spoken with. By proactively identifying customers who are at risk of financial distress and reaching out to them, you can put customer financial wellbeing at the heart of all your interactions.


Empowering your customers

You can empower your customers to manage their financial future better with your help – both at the initial stage of contact right through to the point of collection.

Putting your customers’ financial wellbeing at the centre of your collections strategy has two advantages – it enables you to understand your customer better and it builds a long term relationship which will continue past the current crisis. Help might involve:

  • Deferring payments
  • Automatising restructuring plans
  • Providing financial hardship guidance and debt relief

Financial Services institutions can be the stable foundation their customers need, allowing them to earn their customers’ trust and strengthen their relationships.


How Salesforce can help

In our current world, most customers now interact with their lender on a purely digital basis from start to finish. Systems need to be compliant and flexible enough to predict when a customer might have difficulty with repayments and prompt the lender to support them where needed.

The 360 Salesforce Customer Success Platform moves from using digital platforms as a system of record to one of intelligence where data and AI can predict when customers might get into difficulties. Intervening at an early stage can enable customers to take control of their repayment schedules and turn potential losses into successful repayments.

The Salesforce platform enables lenders to empower customers to build their own interactive repayment plan. This incentivises your retail customers to stick to their plan and puts them in charge of their own financial future.  

The Salesforce solution helps lenders across the entire spectrum of the loan lifecycle- from Pre-collection to Contact strategy, Repayment planning and Close Case and Recovery. There is no need to buy different products to manage each stage and even when recovery is outsourced, you can monitor how well the debt collection agencies are performing.


The 360 Salesforce Customer Success Platform for Collections

We have rethought the entire collections process, centering it on the financial wellbeing of the customer. The platform has four elements to it:

  • Automate – automate your collections process and control the messaging to your customers. This can be scaled up to provide financial support to customers and drive growth and performance.
  • Engage – have a 360 degree view of the customer and a one-stop-shop for collections management 
  • Analyse – giving insights and enabling you to calculate key metrics in real time
  • Einstein – AI and ML engine to predict incoming payments and forecast delays and defaults 

A key element of the platform is the high level collections process, which identifies early those customers that might be at risk and preempts the need to move them into collections by proactively contacting them and agreeing a repayment plan that is mutually acceptable. You can then track this plan as repayment takes place, with one holistic payment plan covering multiple products.

The Salesforce platform enables you to maximise the number of invoices processed, increase the collector’s productivity, and reduce payment ageing. In addition, the entire collections experience can be tailored for each individual. 

Salesforce provides three seamless updates a year, delivering the latest innovation and new features with minimal disruption to your existing implementation.


Helping loyal customers through difficult times

By reaching out and contacting customers who might be in the early stages of financial distress, you can treat them fairly and equitably. When things get back to normal, they can become an advocate for the bank.

The Salesforce solution removes a lot of the complexity required to achieve the consistency, compliance and operational excellence that are needed to deliver an outstanding experience to your customers. Instead, your customer service representatives, relationship managers and collections agents can all concentrate on the wellbeing of the customer. This provides a good experience to employees, many of whom will be working from home and facing significantly larger caseloads.


Need more information? Just ask

If you would like more information, please reach out to your Salesforce account executive who will guide you through the process.

Watch our webinar for an in-depth explanation of how our solution works and how it can help you and your customers. 

Watch the webinar: Leading Through Change in Financial Services: Aligning Collections with Borrower Engagement