Now is the time to redefine client engagement

I read a good article just after we all went into lockdown by the editor of Cover, Adam Saville. You might’ve read it too, ‘Out of every crisis comes opportunity.’ It was an uplifting piece trying to draw the positives from the jaw-dropping events of the unfolding Coronavirus outbreak.

Articles like this are just what we need in times like this. But being the practical type, it makes me question how prepared we all were for this.

The benefit of hindsight

The events of the past month or so have been unprecedented. This current self-isolation and social distancing situation has been dubbed the largest mass exercise in remote working in history. It is a set of circumstances many businesses were not prepared for.

No doubt when things are back to normal, we will have the benefit of hindsight. When you look back, what do you want to be able to say you did?

Self-isolation and social distancing measures have made it harder to engage with clients, but it’s not impossible.

Your clients need you

Mortgage and protection providers are one of the first ports of call for those worried about their finances in this crisis. There has been a rapid spike in calls from borrowers to lenders, and they, along with providers, are struggling to respond to the increase, hastily adding tools like online forms to their websites for people requesting payment holidays. These are businesses that have invested in a digital strategy and are set up to react to increases in demand (albeit perhaps not quite on this scale) but how are the brokers coping?

Brokers too, are in a position of trust and, despite having to themselves work remotely and maintain social distance, they too must continue to be present for clients and be seen to be proactive in this crisis. Transactions must be easy and secure. Many businesses are struggling to adapt to the sudden requirement to work from home but there is help out there.

In it together

Self-isolation and social distancing measures have made it harder to engage with clients, and maintain that engagement, but it’s not impossible. Now is the time to redefine client engagement. Many are now embracing video conferencing. You’ll find some tips on that, and how to use other remote working tools, in our working from home blog.

If you are a small broker business, you might need extra support to confidently get to grips with digital tools. Iress is one of a number of other tech firms who’ve joined forces to help anyone struggling with remote working and can also provide advice on how to build your online presence, to help keep UK financial services professionals going - digitally.

We’ve also launched a range of training resources on our sourcing software, including webinars, Q&A sessions and a library of bite-sized on-demand videos. All can easily be done from home and fit into your working day (or night). What’s more, these resources contribute to your unstructured Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hours. here is even more practical information and support available on our coronavirus hub. We will continue to add to this as the coronavirus situation unfolds. If there is anything you would like to see on there, send me a message.

Building trust at the moment can be as simple as doing what you said you'd do. Making that call when you said you would.

How to build trust now

No one knows how the coronavirus situation will unfold but the mortgage and protection industry is in a strong position to help mitigate fears and must pull together. Building trust at the moment can be as simple as doing what you said you'd do. Making that call when you said you would. Being there for your clients when they need it most. We’re all in this together. Brokers and providers now have a real opportunity to help people feel more secure about their own future, the future of the industry depends on it.

Coronavirus support

For free resources and support to help guide you through the coronavirus crisis, including tips and advice from our team on how to work effectively and securely from home, visit our dedicated hub.