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Mortgage advisory firm principals discuss evaluating and improving mortgage processes, a crucial but often overlooked topic

March 27, 2024DENVER, Colo. In STRATMOR Group’s March Insights Report, Principals Jennifer Smith and Jennifer Fortier explore the benefits of regular mortgage process reviews and emphasize the importance of thoughtful planning, execution and ongoing support to ensure successful and sustainable changes in processes. They also identify potential challenges that can derail sustainment of new processes and provide tips on how mortgage lenders can overcome them.

Smith and Fortier discuss the common reluctance among lenders to examine and improve their processes, citing reasons such as perceived cost, lack of expertise and inertia. “It takes real grit to want to look under the hood with an objective eye and to do so on a regular basis. I see operational reviews as an annual check-up or semi-annual teeth cleaning,” says Smith. “Lenders need to get in front of potential issues before they become a real problem — or discover a problem early enough to easily fix it.”

Drawing from STRATMOR’s extensive MortgageCX data, Smith and Fortier call out seven key process mistakes that can directly impact repeat business and referrals. For example, not calling the borrower prior to closing and repeatedly asking for the same documents make it less likely a borrower will do business with — or refer business to — the same lender. Smith and Fortier offer suggestions to help lenders get to the heart of these types of breakdowns in process, such as using tools like a fishbone diagram to identify causes of problems. They also emphasize the importance of focusing on user adoption and sustainment when implementing changes in the mortgage process.

To learn about the importance of continued process evaluation and improvement and what it takes to be successful, check out the March InFocus article, “On This Episode of ‘Between Two Jennifers’ — Parrying the Pitfalls of Process Improvement.”

In a second article in this month’s report, STRATMOR Customer Experience Director Mike Seminari shows readers how improving the loan process and elevating the customer experience can be the key to more referrals and repeat business.

Seminari shares data showing where miscues in the loan process can lower net promoter scores (NPS) by 75 points and urges lenders to consider allocating some of their existing budget to process improvement.

According to Seminari, “If the ultimate goal of marketing is to increase revenue and if 90% of your revenue is being derived from referrals and relationships based on prior positive interactions with your team and your loan process, is it worth considering allocating some of that budget to improving the loan process and elevating the customer experience?”

Find recommendations for lenders seeking to “spend money to make money” in 2024

in this month’s CX Tip, “Grow Revenue in the Fertile Ground of CX.”

Click here to read the March 2024 edition of STRATMOR’s Insights Report.

About STRATMOR Group

STRATMOR Group is a leading mortgage industry advisory firm that provides a range of programs and services designed to counsel lender CEOs and senior executives. STRATMOR serves more than 250 companies annually, providing strategies that increase growth and improve profitability in sales, marketing, technology, operations and mergers and acquisitions. The company leverages comprehensive, propriety data and key insights gained through extensive experience in the mortgage industry. STRATMOR is well known for its financial models and its collaboration with the Mortgage Bankers Association in the PGR: MBA and STRATMOR Peer Group Roundtables Program. Find out more about STRATMOR on its website at