Real-time online decision-making will be a key factor for used car motor finance in 2021

Time 10 months ago

Technology and processes that mean online decisions can be made in real time are set to be key for the motor finance sector in 2021.

That’s according to Startline Motor Finance, whose chief executive Paul Burgess said the company had been very aware for a long time how important speed was when deciding applications.

‘What we are starting to see now, with a jump in the amount of used car activity taking place online because of the coronavirus crisis, is an increasing emphasis on bringing the speed down to a level where there is barely a pause in the process.

‘If potential customers are made to wait at all, the drop-out rate for applications is very high.’

Burgess added: ‘Online consumers are conditioned to expect actions to be completed in something very close to real time, and meeting this expectation is going to be a major point of investment for the motor finance sector in 2021.

‘Certainly, we are making some changes in this area ourselves, with the aim of ensuring our automated decision-making is as fast as possible.’

The challenge, though, was to create digital processes that met the need for speed but also guaranteed responsible lending decisions, he said.

‘We’ve spent a long time looking at online processes in which we are involved and fine-tuning them at key points.

‘In the current market, which remains understandably volatile, we’ve found that small changes can have a big impact,’ he said.

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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