Transforming Your Lending Process, Part III: Technology Implementation

By Neill LeCorgne

Note: This is Part III of a four-part series. Click here to read Part II. 

July 18 — Phase 3 focuses on the implementation of the technology into the institution’s current lending process using new process workflows. A first step in the implementation process is a scoping meeting to discuss mapping key data from the institution’s core to the vendor platform.

Typically, this mapping process takes the form of an extract file set-up for transferring client relationship, collateral and other key information. This information auto populates the vendor platform, typically in batch form nightly. Following a discussion on the extract file, the current lending process workflow should be documented on a white board, and this exercise should include identifying process improvements. Once the proposed workflows are mapped it is easy to describe the process changes and how they will benefit the institution’s team members in the lending process. The white boarding also includes process improvements targeted to benefit the client. An important aspect of this step is that it provides the institution with a view of any new team member roles and responsibilities. Team member roles and responsibilities are included in the steps of the new loan workflows, with notifications mapped for the workflow users to follow as the lending process is streamlined.

After careful evaluation of the new workflows that have been built in a collaborative manner with the vendor and agreed to by the team members, a final implementation plan that includes team member training and roll out should be created. Key components of the final implementation plan include the specs for the online application portal, including any required applicant information, qualifying questions, disclosures, compliance and pipeline processes. Existing links to third-party data sources (such as credit bureaus, OFAC checks and documentation preparation platforms) should be identified in the implementation plan in order to bring these vendors into the workflow so that as many meaningful steps can be automated as the institution wishes. Standardized notifications, internal memos, letters to clients, archives, etc., are created to support the workflows as part of this phase. Templates are finalized. Links are completed to the outside third-party platforms, such as a loan documentation preparation platform, credit bureaus, OFAC, digital loan signature, etc. At this point, key reports can be identified in the dashboards or custom-created with the institution’s input to move the institution to a more dynamic and forward-looking organization. If applicable, loan scoring and decisioning is customized and loan pathing is created in this phase in support of the approval process. Institution-specific credit memoranda can be built out leveraging the technology to auto-populate the credit package. Finally, users and their roles for the platform are established.

Following the development of the implementation plan, an extensive and thorough testing period should occur from the core extract through each step of the workflows and third-party vendors. The testing should conclude with a parallel test of the whole lending process with loans going through the institution’s current lending process. Key trainers should be identified in this phase who will become platform experts available to test the platform and support user training.

About the Author

Neill LeCorgne is vice president of Banking at Sageworks and is responsible for working with financial institutions to enhance their operating strategies including improving efficiency in the lending process. Neill has over thirty-three years of experience in the financial industry including eleven years as president and director of a multi-bank holding company in the state of Florida, seven years as manager of a corporate banking team at a super-regional bank and fifteen years serving financial institutions as director of Business Development for the Federal Home Loan Banks of Atlanta and Seattle. Neill led the development of a consultative business approach to institutions at the Federal Home Loan Banks of Atlanta and Seattle, working with more than 250 banks across the Southeast and Pacific Northwest. 

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