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Thoughtful Designs for a Modern Loan Servicing Experience

Achieving a simple design is more complicated than it looks.

Willow Servicing is lucky to have not only a lean team who is quick to identify and respond to customer needs but also to have engaged users who are committed to providing invaluable feedback. Customer input helps us to better define the direction of our loan servicing product and ensures that we are building a tool that provides unparalleled value. All too often the word “design” makes us think of the general look and feel of a product, but what is often overlooked is how design decisions are made. At Willow, we believe that design should not only look good, but it should make sense too.

At Willow, we know that it’s impossible to solve a problem without giving our customers the opportunity to provide their input.

Mortgage originations and servicing software in particular can feel overwhelming and difficult to navigate, which is why we focus on creating a streamlined tool where most tasks can be completed through automation or with a single click. One of Willow Servicing’s core goals is that a customer should feel confident in our product upon signing in for the first time and we lean on our design to meet that goal. Design is hyper-focused on making it simple for a user to get a job done because the last thing we want is a customer feeling frustrated.

Willow learns from loan servicing experts

The first thing that our product and design teams acknowledge is that we aren’t the experts, our customers are therefore we take our lead from them. Willow encourages frequent customer syncs so that we can dive deeper into not only what a feature should do, but why it should do it. This process allows us to better understand our customers’ day-to-day goals and uncover more opportunities to create simple solutions for them. From the design perspective, it is important to identify related problems so that they can be solved together, eliminating manual steps and processes for our end users.

Encourage continuous feedback

Sharing a proposed design solution with anyone can feel scary, because you can never predict how it will be perceived. But at Willow, we know that it’s impossible to solve a problem without giving our customers the opportunity to provide their input. After all, they are the experts and they will be the ones actively using that solution. Presenting designs allows the Willow team to ask follow-up questions in real time and potentially identify ways to simplify our proposed idea. By the time we have completed a feature, we can rest assured that we are releasing something that is providing real value for our lenders.

Successful designs are defined by usability

Design isn’t always about colors and fonts and how things are going to look. That’s the fun stuff, absolutely. Design, at its core, is about neatly solving problems with the support of colors, fonts and all of the fun stuff. At Willow we know that if our interface isn’t adapting to clearly meet the goals of our users, it’s failing, regardless of how beautiful it looks. Our design team is constantly thinking about how we can continue to build an interface that guides a user to confidently complete a task.

It’s important to note that a design is always a work in progress, even if it’s been released for days, months, or even years! As long as the design team is learning through user input, utilizing internal data, and keeping up with core customer needs, the interface will continue to get better and better. It’s also important to remember that in the mortgage world compliance is ever evolving and our design solution needs to adapt alongside those changes. While Willow’s design may appear simple, it requires a lot of dedication to research, evaluation, and iteration to maintain that simplicity and we really enjoy that process.


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