Our Point Of View: The Technology Shift

*The Technology Shift*
**By Ted Hicks**

***Let’s face it, there’s a lot of bad news circulating, the least of which is a 20% decline in origination volume predicted for next year. However, I choose to be an optimist. Surely we’re still waiting for the new “normal.” Nonetheless, with transaction volumes dropping, more of our accounts are focusing on technology in what I call the “technology shift.” Lenders simply need technology more than ever and they’re looking to technology vendors to help them automate their entire gamut of processes.

****As lenders realize the need for more streamlined automation, it’s only natural they start looking beyond their current technology to the “new and different.” That’s not always the best or the most cost-effective way to go. What we’ve been able to do with many of our lenders is introduce them fully to software they already use. We get shoulder to shoulder with them to help them define their processes and we find new ways for them to use their current technology to gain the efficiencies they’ve been looking for.

****We encourage our clients to talk openly with us so that we can evaluate their processes and technology usage. We can show them they don’t need new technology; they just need to optimize how they use what they have. By teaching them more effective ways of using their software, we help them solve business problems.

****For instance, sometimes there are internal disconnects that exist within a lender shop that can be resolved by implementing business rules or enforcing standards through template sets. There also may be departments that don’t “talk” to each other and the biggest culprit of all—technology systems that don’t “talk” to each other. With the difficulty level in the regulatory environment, it is unreasonable to have two systems of record that can result in inaccurate data and reporting. We help by identifying the disparities and showing them how to ensure data integrity by consolidating systems.

****Clients who adopt more streamlined operations realize greater efficiencies in overall workflow very quickly. A lot of it is about internal buy in. Also, there’s a lot of shock when they realize that it doesn’t cost anything because they already have the software; they’re just not using it to the fullest. So, the transition is effective, efficient and considerably less costly.

****To our lender clients, I advise you to take advantage of time. Make sure that you understand what technology you have and discover how best to use it. Be diligent in making these decisions and always look at return on investment. In most cases you don’t have to spend more money to solve problems so don’t be swayed by a flashy demo when you can get even better results by maximizing your existing technology. With origination volume on the decline, now is the time to heighten your business efficiencies with all the potential your technology offers—without spending millions in dollars or valuable resource hours.