A significant number of people have been directly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and are dealing with profound changes to their financial circumstances. Lenders are working hard to support affected customers, however the increased volume of hardship applications can affect their ability to achieve well considered, appropriate and timely outcomes for customers.
Managing a hardship process is challenging, doing it at scale is even tougher. One of the biggest challenges is obtaining reliable information from the customer that accurately describes how their circumstances have changed to support their application.
Lenders need supporting information when assessing hardship so they can understand why the customer’s circumstances changed, to what degree, and how long the customer might be affected by the change. Without this information it is difficult to design a variation program that will effectively support the customer, i.e., one that the customer’s situation can sustain and will have a positive effect on the customers ability to meet their obligations now and into the future.
Obtaining supporting information
Hardship processes are not always easy for customers to engage with. People who are experiencing hardship, regardless of why, are also likely to be under additional stress, possibly dealing with multiple creditors and housing or job insecurity on top of the existing demands of family life. This can affect a customer’s motivation and ability to complete all of the requirements of a hardship process.
A customer’s level of financial acumen and know-how should also be considered. They may not have the skills or experience to prepare an income and expenditure, let alone the time to assemble it, gather the documents that support it and get that information to the lender. Customers in this situation may also be reluctant to talk to their lender about changes in their circumstances.
The result can be that customers who do make the effort to reach out to their lenders for assistance may abandon the process when faced with the task of gathering and preparing their supporting information. This can result in customers experiencing even greater hardship and potentially being unable to service their credit commitments at all.
Credit Sense Hardship Support service
Our Hardship Support service enables you to engage directly with customers applying for hardship relief to obtain updated income and expenditure information quickly and easily.
It can be enabled immediately and includes:
- Independent email and SMS quick link functionality to engage customers
- Configurable to limit functionality access to your hardship personnel or team
- Customisable consumer communication content to encourage engagement in the process
- Categorised report with custom hardship analysis decision points
- Full online and telephone support to customise even further to support your hardship process
- No additional integration necessary
Overcome customer reluctance and the barriers to delivering a supportive and inclusive hardship process. Contact your Account Manager today to discuss our Hardship Support service.