Loan officers will be contacted through a LinkedIn job post, which will explain the nature of the assignment. The job post will clarify that it is a temporary, paid, remote job that does not require leaving their current job. For each loan officer who finishes evaluating the 16 applicants, they will be paid the sum of USD 20. In addition, they will be asked to recommend three (3) loan officers possibly interested in participating. For each referral who completes the exercise, they will be paid an additional USD 10. Payment to loan officers is based on the project budget, response rate goals, and previous experience.
Once the loan officer accepts the task, he/she interacts with a registration module that consists of four phases personal information collection, risk tolerance assessment, and socioemotional and cognitive tests. First, the loan officers will provide information on their personal, work, and academic characteristics, which will serve to use control variables in the regression analyses of the research.
Finally, information will be gathered on the socio-emotional and cognitive traits of loan officers. Regarding cognitive information, we implemented a Wonderlic test. For the socioemotional characteristics, we used the self-esteem test, following Rosenberg (1965), and a personality test based on Digman's (1990) or the OCEAN test. Once the registration is completed, the agent receives an e-mail with the credentials to access the selection module.
The selection module begins by asking for the credentials to access the platform: an email and password. The credentials are sent automatically by email to every recruiter that finishes the registration process.
The platform presents a welcome message and a brief explanation of the exercise on the first screen. The loan officer is tasked with evaluating 16 pre-approved mortgage loan applications and determining the loan conditions for each applicant. To begin the review of applications, the loan officer must click on the blue button labeled 'Review applicants and applications.
Upon clicking, the screen displays the 16 credit applications, and the loan officer needs to click on the button located on the right side, labeled 'Review,' to access the details of each application.
Subsequently, the platform shows the personal identification information of the applicant selected, including name, surname, e-mail, nationality, identity card or passport, profession or occupation, and marital status. Also, the form displays the following information: socio-demographic data of the applicant, details of the property to be purchased, personal income, and, if applicable, the spouse's income, as well as the loan pre-approved.
Once the application review is complete, the loan officer proceeds to click on the blue button at the bottom of the platform to evaluate the applicant. Subsequently, a form appears with the following questions based on the information provided: i) Does the rate at which the credit has been approved seem appropriate to you? If it is not the most appropriate rate, what rate would you recommend for this client?; ii) Do you think this person requires a co-signer?; iii) Does the percentage of the property covered by the loan seem appropriate to you? If not, what percentage of the property do you suggest the loan covers?; iv) Does the agreed term to pay the loan seem appropriate to you? If not, what payment period would you grant to this person?; v) Does the amortization system seem appropriate to you? If not, what amortization system would you recommend?; vi) Is there any other credit dimension that you considered that is necessary to make changes given the applicant’s credit risk level?; vii) Additionally, please comment on the criteria you used to assess the applicants. Once they finish reviewing the application, they click on “Finish” and they repeat the same process until they complete the 16 applications.