I was watching Saturday Kitchen at the weekend (one of my usual rituals) and Rick Stein on his great city breaks in Bordeaux triggered a thought in my weird way!
In a fabulous rustic restaurant where there was an abundance of choice, he decided to go for the humble chicken, something he wouldn’t normally do but on this occasion was glad he did, as the care and time that had been taken to prepare and cook the dish made him say – “this is what chicken is meant to taste like.”
I know Rick gets animated and passionate over food but his point was so true: Chicken, on the whole, is over-commoditised. We use it so much that it’s lost its flavour and it now takes something really special to make it stand out – the care, ingredients and the skill that the French chef put into his dish.
So you’re thinking, come on Dev, what does this have to do with anything?
I recently commented on the ‘free legals’ remortgaging situation that has hit the press in the last month and how offering alternatives, such as a Cashback option, to clients could be an important way forward to resolve the awful service position the industry has sailed into. So the question I asked myself, with the help of my friend Rick, was have we over-commoditised remortgaging?
The answer is obvious – yes! The push has been for cost reduction and more transactions, but at the expense of the customer experience and journey. There is a lack of capacity within the conveyancing space and a lack of investment into the overall customer experience, meaning that borrowers and brokers are finding that quality is compromised. In essence, the remortgaging legal process has lost its flavour.
So how do we resolve this? Well everyone in the food chain has some responsibility. I’ve already said there is nothing wrong with a free legals product as long as the customer benefit and experience is the key driver and not ‘cheap at any cost’. Lenders therefore must ensure they see their desire to deliver the right service through. Law firms must ensure they explain how the right service can be delivered and brokers must assist clients in understanding the right option for them, especially in relation to representation and access.
Ultimately though, the recent pain clients and brokers have suffered on free legal remortgage cases won’t be in vain, as I believe we will go through a market correction, which will fall in favour of the consumer and reward the broker for the key role they play.
If you’ve experienced these pains, or just want a bit a flavour back in your life, give my fab hot Chicken Curry a go. Recipe requests to devmalle@My Home Move.com.