The changing face of the business development manager.

By Tony Wornell

Since 2009, BDRC has taken an annual look at mortgage intermediaries’ impressions of different lenders’ business development manager (BDM) forces.

The reports have shown that a good BDM consistently acts as a key support to mortgage advisers' willingness to place business with a lender. But the reports have also indicated changes in how BDMs go about their role and what the impact of these changes can be.

Personal contact with intermediaries remains central. The individual lenders have very different practices in terms of whether face-to-face or telephone contact dominates. But across the industry a wider trend is clear: more telephone contact and less face-to-face contact. However, the studies suggest that this is not detrimental to the impact that a good BDM can make.

Altogether, the attitude from intermediaries towards BDMs is very positive. While there is still ample scope for further improvement, the studies have reported big increases in the perceived knowledge of BDMs, the extent to which they help intermediaries understand lending criteria, how easy they are to get on with and their willingness to return calls and emails.

These are now the strongest rated aspects of the average BDM force, but no aspects have displayed significant falls in ratings since 2009. Intermediaries’ impressions have continued to strengthen with these developments over time.

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