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How Covid Changed FOLK2FOLK

FOLK2FOLK

The pandemic and subsequent lockdowns made a significant impact on the home and working lives of pretty much everyone.  As a result, many industries and businesses implemented operational, attitudinal, and behavioural changes to adapt.

At FOLK2FOLK we made several changes early on and continued to adapt throughout the pandemic. We’ve chosen to keep our changes and are building even further upon them.

We implemented operational changes from application through to credit approval. When assessing applications, we continue to consider how the crisis has, and potentially continues to, impact on each Borrower.  We adapted our credit assessment process to include a COVID-19 section and explain how we have assessed the COVID-19 impact in the loan information we provide to our Investors.

We enhanced our credit approval process in the form of a Credit Committee. This Committee requires three Senior Management Team members to approve any given loan.  This is part of our prudent and common-sense approach to limit exposure to unnecessary levels of risk, while maintaining an attractive interest rate reward.

We take additional care in early identification of late payments by defining our own internal strict definition of ‘default’ as 14 days versus the FCA definition of 180 days. In addition, we foster a culture of ‘no surprises’ by maintaining regular dialogue with Borrowers and any missed payments are flagged internally within one day.

We also adapted our working behaviour. Our team adapted effortlessly to home working during lockdown and after collating staff views, we have now embraced a hybrid model of home and office working.  This in turn has led to a re-evaluation of attitudes towards staff work/life balance and we’re in the process of introducing a sabbatical policy for staff who want to take a longer break from work while having peace of mind they have a job to return to. Mindful of the toll the pandemic and lockdown may have taken on people, we also introduced an Employee Assist Scheme to help staff with legal and financial issues and emotional support for any challenges they may be facing.

We remain vigilant for reverberations from the pandemic and as a nimble business, will continue to adapt as necessary.

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