How can lenders improve their service to brokers? Q&A with Powered Mortgages Matt Surridge

Matt Surridge, Director of Sales at MPowered Mortgages talks to IFA Magazine about his new role, the role of lenders and state of the current market.

1. Matt, as the recently appointed Director of Sales at MPowered Mortgages, how do you hope to shape the sales team at MPowered? 

Our vision at MPowered Mortgages is simple. We want to use technology to streamline the mortgage process, creating time and cost savings for brokers while giving consumers certainty and control throughout their mortgage journey. By automating as much of the lending process as possible, we can give brokers more time to fully understand customer needs, concerns, and aspirations to help them achieve the best outcomes possible. 

The market is continually evolving, and as a result, we are committed to optimising our service and support, working with brokers as closely as possible to ensure that they have everything they need when they need it. 

I have spent the past few years working with brokers, financial advisers, and leading fintech brands. I am excited to apply this experience to collaborate with our broker partners and improve the broker and customer journey. 

2. What key things must lenders address to improve the service they offer brokers? 

As an industry, we are continually innovating, but there remain key challenges for lenders to navigate. Ensuring that response times are fast and accurate is paramount. We work in a fast-paced environment, and brokers want to be confident that their advice is accurate and timely. Being able to speak to their customers with confidence is crucial. As part of that innovation, last year, our team launched CriteriaGPT. This allows brokers to interact with our platform via a Chatbot using the latest technology in Large Language models (LLMs) as if they were speaking to someone. Through this initiative, we give brokers access to the information they need 24/7 and as quickly as possible. 

Underwriting is still a crucial part of the application process, and we recognise the requirement for brokers to have access to underwriters to clarify key points of an application. Our underwriters regularly contact our brokers during the process, including through our dedicated broker WhatsApp channel. However, as we continue towards our mission of a fully automated application process, we are approaching a point where the application process can be underwritten using in-house LLMs and machine learning, removing the emphasis on broker support for the underwriting process. 

3. What are the main challenges brokers face in the current climate, and how is MPowered positioned to address this? 

I’ve been in the mortgage industry for the best part of two decades, and the level and volatility of rates in the past year are the highest I’ve seen. Given the current volatility and the general understanding of mortgage rates and costs, brokers will likely face challenges from customers throughout the process, questioning if their deal remains the ‘best’ one for them. MPowered is committed to being as competitive as possible and continues to reduce rates to support borrowers during these challenging times. 

4. What sets MPowered apart, and how far has MPowered come since launch? 

We are completely committed to serving our industry as a lender and a technology innovator. The rate of change at MPowered has been, and continues to be, incredible! Working for such a fast-moving organisation at the forefront of technological change in our industry continues to drive me. 

Intermediaries are our number one priority. We are an intermediary-only lender as we believe borrowers will get the best mortgage that suits their needs if they go via an intermediary. This has never been more crucial than in the past year with the volatility in the market. 

We are committed to supporting our broker partners to the fullest extent. To this end, we have launched new tools that utilise the power of AI, aiming to revolutionise the broker journey and their business practices. Our MarketingAssist tool enables brokers to create marketing content they can send to prospective and existing customers to generate business leads. Our CriteriaGPT tool also means brokers can contact our helpdesk via an advanced chatbot, eliminating the need to speak to a helpdesk. 

In addition to this, we have created and hosted webinars on swap rates and pricing. We will continue to launch new initiatives and tools to improve a broker’s day-to-day experience of dealing with a lender, ultimately benefiting the customer. Ensuring the happiness of both our brokers and customers is our primary goal. We are confident that our expertise in AI will play a pivotal role in achieving this together.

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