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A Zest for Easier Mortgage Applications Leads FinTech Innovator BlueZest to Low-Code Development

BlueZest is on a mission to disrupt the UK mortgage lending market. And when they wanted to provide a radically faster, modern, digital mortgage application and approval process that cut weeks from traditional methods, BlueZest chose OutSystems. In five months, they created a mortgage underwriting application that, since its launch in 2017, can provide initial loan quotes in as little as 15 minutes and confirmed offers in less than an hour—securely and with rigorous compliance and risk management checks.


Mortgage Application Status: It’s Complicated

Challenge BlueZest is a technology-based specialized property investment funder, and they’re on a mission to overhaul the UK mortgage lending market. In 2017, BlueZest was in a hurry to bring a particularly disruptive idea to market. With a combined 100 years of experience in financial services, the team knew that mortgage lending decisions should take minutes, not weeks and months. Providing a simple and secure online application process with an integrated decision engine would dramatically improve the experience for borrowers and their intermediaries.

Speed-to-market is always an important consideration for a startup. And the speed promised by OutSystems piqued BlueZest’s interest. This and additional criteria led BlueZest to select OutSystems:

  • Elegant, responsive user experience on any device

  • Intelligent, adaptive forms that simplify the application process

  • Compliance and security to safeguard sensitive personal and financial data

  • Industry-leading integration options

  • Simplified development and application maintenance

“A capable low-code platform was the obvious choice. It allows us to focus on delivering business requirements, rather than wasting time worrying about source code,” explained John Robinson, BlueZest CTO.

Streamlined Team Delivers Streamlined Mortgage Application in Five Months

Solution - Robinson hired two recent graduate web-developers and a more experienced developer, none of whom had prior experience with OutSystems. According to John, the team found the OutSystems low-code platform easy to learn: “The online training approach and weekly webinars with the OutSystems customer success team worked very well for our team. The advice we received meant we got the design and implementation right the first time.”

"Speed-to-market is dramatically improved compared to hand-coding, perhaps by as much as 10 times across build, test, and deployment. As we grow, this agility advantage should keep us ahead compared to long-established lenders who are always struggling with legacy issues."

John Robinson, CTO

There’s no getting away from it; mortgage applications are long and complicated. BlueZest used OutSystems to streamline the experience considerably. Intelligent, adaptive forms ensure that applicants only see the fields they need to complete. They can also complete an application in multiple sessions by saving their responses as they go, always picking-up where they left off on the device of their choosing at that time.

Progression through the application front-end triggers compliance and risk management validation on the back-end. By the time the applicant finishes, address verification, know-your-customer checks, credit history checks, affordability and indebtedness checks, property valuation, and other background checks have all been done.

Solution Capabilities

  • Intelligent, adaptive forms and responsive design support any platform or device

  • Integration with multiple third-party web services

  • Compliance and security, which are essential for sensitive personal and financial data

  • Secure portal for intermediaries enables brokers to track their applications

Loan Quotes and Confirmation in Minutes

Results - The digital mortgage underwriting application went live in October 2017. BlueZest is citing speeds as fast as 15 minutes for initial loan quotes and 30 minutes for confirmed offers. Providing customers and intermediaries with real certainty on their application within minutes is a differentiator for BlueZest.

Development continues on additional integration with the UK Land Registry, banks, additional property valuation services, conveyance partners, and new sales channels. With low-code development, BlueZest seems set to keep innovating faster than its competitors.

“One thing is certain in financial services: you are dealing with constant change from all quarters. So, agility is key. OutSystems provides us a visual, self-documenting approach to development, complete with versioning, testing, and debugging all built in. So, not only can we develop quickly, but we also can adapt and enhance the customer experience quicker still," said Robinson.

Major productivity gains:

  • Great user experience on any platform or device

  • Integration with multiple third-party web-services

  • Compliance and security built-in

  • Low-code development about 10x faster

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