“Driven by the promise of making customers feel good and by the fundamental nature of a market pioneer, we have always strived to adapt quickly to the rapidly changing business environment,” says Anastasia. “The current pandemic is a clear example of our agility, and digital innovation is our ultimate goal.”
In Vietnam, with its various stages of containment, customers have turned to the internet to find solutions to their sudden challenges. A significant number have tried new digital services: 41% of all digital service consumers were new (above the SEA average), with 94% of those new consumers intending to continue their behavior after the pandemic. With COVID’s rapid market conditions, Anastasia’s mission was to adapt quickly to changing market conditions.
Seeing the increase in the number of online transactions and the limits in demand for physical cards, his team came up with the idea for a virtual card solution. As with an online loan with flexible payments, all customers had to do was apply through an app. Limits appeared instantly, allowing them to pay as needed.
“Home loan, as a pioneer in the consumer credit market, has helped change the way people use financial products,” says Anastasia. “Our automation system allows clients to apply for a loan and get disbursed in 10 minutes. As a result, the business can adapt and innovate quickly depending on how people shop during the pandemic ”.
Following the positive feedback, Home Credit Vietnam accelerated its push for virtual credit cards. Launched in May, the cards became available the first week of August. Now customers can have a card in their app and use it to shop the same way they would with a physical card. Plus, the virtual credit card is fully online, from registration and use to administration. Customers only need 30 minutes to request the card. You can apply with just a few documents and access immediate offers: 2% cash back for all online transactions, 45% interest-free days, and 0% interest rate with an equal payment plan conversion.
It’s one of the very first options like this on the market – and incredibly convenient during the COVID time. “You have a credit card built into your smartphone,” says Anastasia. ‘How cool is that?’
Asked about her opinion on the upward trend of Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL), Anastasia told us: “This is nothing strange or new to HomeCredit. This is the product the group has been offering for 20 years. : 0% interest rate and equal monthly payments for customer purchases We are now moving it online across the world for a seamless experience through our app.
She is also leading the app project to align with a mobile-focused strategy, applying advanced data analytics, artificial intelligence, and other disruptive technologies. Home Credit is the very first Consumer Finance Company (CFC) to launch its app lending service, which now has 12 million downloads.
“I feel grateful that I have the power to make changes,” she adds. “It wasn’t all easy, but we did it in a very short time. This is a perfect example of how Home Credit adapts to change. For example, the company plans to launch a QR code option soon, so that even with a virtual card, customers can pay in person at stores and banks, as well as e-commerce sites.
Finally, Home Credit includes alternative processes for underwriting clients based on games, innovative data, and advanced scoring. These processes adjust financing solutions to the needs of clients, even those with a lack of credit history and collateral.
It all adds up to an effective system. “We are empowered to run our business in an agile manner,” concludes Anastasia. “Sometimes there are conflicts, but we all get things done. At the end of the day, we share a common goal: to make the customer feel good ”.
Since 2019, Home Credit has been cooperating with FPT, which is Vietnam’s largest IT company with operations in over 20 countries across APAC, Europe and the United States. Amid the pandemic, their project teams set up AI call centers, including voice bots, live chats, and chatbots. This automated solution has helped Home Credit reduce costs, improve efficiency and increase customer satisfaction. In addition, he provided clients with valuable information regarding payments, insurance and other financial opportunities.
Thanks to the collaboration between FTP and Home Credit, the solution handled more than 2,000,000 calls per month, reduced operating expenses by 50% and obtained 4.5 points out of 5 in terms of customer satisfaction. “This is what I call the synergy effect,” explains Anastasia. “One plus one is not two, but three. By connecting Home Credit’s scale and innovative approach to risk with FPT’s operations and technology, we’ve created one of the best customer experiences out there.
She notes that although FPT is a large company, it always finds a solution tailored to customer needs. Mortgage loans have the same approach. “We manage to be both agile and customer-oriented,” says Anastasia. “To do this, we select partners who share not only our activity, but also our values. This is the basis of a successful partnership – stronger together ”.
Agile but responsible
How does Home Credit Vietnam take care of its clients? First, it offers loans based on a strict and automated appraisal process. The business relies on a credit score card, which relies on statistical models and many different factors to assess creditworthiness, thereby helping customers avoid over-indebtedness. As a result, Home Credit has the lowest Nonperforming Loan Rate (NPL) in the Vietnamese consumer credit market. The ratio has been kept below 3%, which is not mandatory but encouraged by the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV).
To help clients make the right borrowing decisions based on their own circumstances, a cooling off period is offered as standard for all transactions: up to 2 weeks after signing a loan agreement, the client can reconsider its decision and withdraw from the contract at no cost. This is one of the commitments to ensure that first-time borrowers and repeat customers feel secure and confident using the company’s products.
Additionally, financial literacy education helps Home Credit advocate for responsible credit. The organization promotes an understanding of finance through tours, workshops, branch open houses, in-store events, brochures, publications, contests, media campaigns, mobile games and entertainment. ‘public education in supermarkets, malls and communities. Its main goal is to teach people about credit and promote responsible borrowing practices, to help communities with the principles of money management and household budgeting, and to educate children and students. to help them become responsible adults.
Finally, Home Credit has strict policies to protect the security of customer data. ” The mortgage is a responsible company that constantly acts with transparency, compliance and customer focus, ”Anastasia tells me. “We ensure long-term benefits for customers, partners and society.” She adds: “We want to build lasting relationships with partners. In every partnership, we want our customers to be winners. We want our partners to win. And this focus on community is what makes us unique.
Prepared for the future
As we close, I ask Anastasia about the challenges ahead. She gives me a direct and refreshing answer: “We are not dealing with challenges, but with opportunities. Home Credit Vietnam is more prepared for the future than ever. We have a core app with all of our main operations intact. The Vietnamese government supports the digitization of our economy. And our customers are very interested in virtual credit and other digital solutions ”.
Basically, the pandemic has accelerated digital payments. Even eighty-year-old Vietnamese citizens with their hearts set on cash began to use digital payments out of necessity. “Under normal circumstances, citizens could have taken years to make the change,” said Anastasia. “But 2021 has changed everyone’s habits.” For her, this is one of the best results Home Credit could have anticipated. “We help citizens of all ages,” she tells me. “Finally, they can save money for what matters most.”