Someone Is Getting It Right

*Someone Is Getting It Right*
**By Tony Garritano**

TonyG***With several big acquisitions behind us geared at offering mortgage lenders an end-to-end system, and a lot of new regulations ahead of us, the loan origination space is very competitive. The Holy Grail in terms of being able to provide the best LOS on the market is about offering a fully integrated, data-driven system that is super nimble. We’ve been talking about the need for a system like this for years, but few if any have been able to deliver. Well, today I can safely report that someone in the LOS space is getting it right. Here’s what I mean:

****I recently had a demo of Fiserv’s Common Origination Platform, and it was very impressive. To be clear, I am not endorsing Fiserv’s offering. I haven’t seen every LOS on the market to be able to make an apples-to-apples comparison, but I have seen a few of them first hand and I can say that Fiserv gets what the mortgage industry needs and delivers.

****Why do I say this? The Common Origination Platform is just that, it enables lenders to originate all types of loans on a single/common platform. That’s important because it gives lenders an opportunity to cross-sell their credit card customers into a mortgage, or a boat loan, or another financing vehicle. By the same token, if the user is purely a mortgage lender, this technology allows them to easily expand into offering offer types of loans without having to use multiple systems.

****As I was taken through the screens, they literally looked and acted the same regardless of it we were in a mortgage loan or a commercial loan. Also, the end user saw data, not forms. The lending industry is becoming super regulated. So, lenders need to be agile. In the demo Fiserv touted, among other things, its integration with Compliance Systems (CSi). Mark Deese, Product Manager, Lending Solutions at Fiserv, literally told me that because of Fiserv’s relationship with CSi, lenders don’t need a traditional doc prep at all.

****The CSi technology manages data on a transactional level, eliminating the need to set up and maintain numerous templates and packages. How does this approach benefit the lender? As an example, a leading southeast bank realized some unexpected benefits after implementing CSi’s compliance solution. The solution, purchased to compliantly document financial transactions and mitigate risk, also reduced transaction processing time from 15 minutes to less than five minutes.

****In addition, bank employees spent less time inputting information and rendering documents as they would with a traditional doc prep, which allowed them more time with the customers generating interest in additional lending products. This improved customer interaction and resulted in a significant increase in sales at every branch. Generally speaking, it has been estimated that lenders can literally reduce the number of documents in their library by as much as 70% by using CSi’s data-driven technology.

****Beyond the benefits of fully integrating to a compliance vendor like CSi and offering a system that can originate any type of loan, the Fiserv offering is also fully integrated to LoanServ, Fiserv’s servicing system. The integration improves efficiency for all users by sharing data points and eliminating potential errors caused by manual data entry.

****With an increasing number of financial institutions supporting both production and servicing operations, the integration of the Fiserv solutions provides a consolidated view of each customer as well as a single view of risk for their loan portfolios. The integration eliminates duplication within processes and the business management of the systems.

****Regulatory requirements impact the need for greater standardization during the origination process and how data is presented to borrowers. On the servicing side, monthly statements also are becoming more standardized. The seamless integration of Common Origination Platform and LoanServ will eliminate duplication within processes and the business management of the systems, as well as reduce the number of touch points that may obscure an organization’s total relationship with its lending customers.

****The big picture that I got out of the demo was that Fiserv is now offering a system that is truly data driven from start to finish. Why is that important? When you’re operating in an intensely regulated environment you need a technology offering that can both comply and change on a dime, which is something you can only achieve when you have a fully integrated, data-driven solution.

****I asked Mark Deese during the demo what he thought the major industry advance/industry value proposition behind this new technology was and he put it this way:

****“If you’re originating a commercial loan, the screens look identical to when you’re originating a mortgage on the system. It looks and acts like the same system regardless of what lending vertical you’re working in. It’s one database so you only enter data once and you only have to do one update when there’s a regulatory or process change. Everyone is concerned about the regulatory changes coming in January 2014, but we at Fiserv have total control over the situation because we make literally one change and every lending vertical is compliant. It’s that easy for us and our lenders.”