A day in the life of Martin Heppenstall - more2life
My alarm goes off at -
6am, I would love to say I wake up with a spring in my step and a smile on my face but that wouldn’t be technically true, it’s more like a creaking noise and a confused thought as to whether that was my knees. However, a quick shower and a cup of coffee and I’m good to go.
I can’t leave the house without –
My other half (as we both work together) and my rucksack.
I get to work by-
Car, it usually takes about 1hr to travel to work, depending on the traffic and the time of the year.
The main purpose of my job –
I ensure our processes and procedures are adequate for each of our funders risk models, whilst ensuring all the lending criteria are applied in the correct manner. I also train and develop the underwriting team, provide technical support to our third parties and stakeholders.
My typical day –
Ahhh if only one exists…. Generally I arrive in the office early this then allows me to prepare for the day ahead, I don’t like surprises therefore try to plan as much as possible throughout the day but have yet to master the fine art of this. There are always things that come along which no amount of planning can cater for, maybe this is also what makes it interesting as to quote Forrest Gump “Underwriting is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get”.
People may not know what I’m responsible for –
Oversight and management of all the lending criteria and technical processes.
A common misconception about my job –
Most people generally think underwriters don’t like lending money and love saying ‘no’ – this is so far removed from the truth, our ethos is to review each risk component and understand its implications before making a decision. The team will hate me for this but, I always refer to my risk bar and if you start with your arms open this is your risk bar and only by mitigating the risk will this bar shorten. My favourite misconception is that people think Underwriters are like hermits and don’t like speaking with people – in fact we love coming across the weird and wonderful and only by speaking and discussing the information to hand can we ensure we make the correct decisions.
My favourite work memory is –
I don’t have a specific memory as such as there are so many things I have been lucky enough to have been involved with, however I suppose from being the only member of more2life in 2008 to now being the Chief Underwriter for a company which is now the 3rd largest independent equity release provider, with over 200 employees is a pretty good memory. A perk of the job is …. The odd black tie dinner
To unwind I like to –
I love watching football and am a massive Liverpool fan, of course spending time with my amazing family and walking the dog (he is the only dog I know who doesn’t like going out) and supporting the local breweries with the occasional pint. Describe the role in five words- Challenging, varied, interesting, satisfying and educational.