Technology can certainly promote compliance. For example, WFG National Title Insurance Company (WFG National Title)agents are now using the company’s Compliance Management System (CMS), an electronic platform allowing those agents to educate themselves about key compliance requirements as well as assisting them in the design of new compliance policies and procedures. WFG National Title is a growing national title insurance underwriting company and a full service provider of title insurance and real estate settlement services for commercial and residential transactions nationwide.
According to WFG National Title’s Executive Vice President, Joseph Drum, Esq., the company has made the rollout of the system a priority over the past several months. The project has been spearheaded by, WFG’s Chief Compliance officer, Donald O’Neill, Rick Diamond , SVP of IT and agency operations and Kelley Shellhaas, assistant Midwest underwriting counsel for WFG.
The CMS is an online platform WFG agents can use to educate themselves about compliance requirements and to develop the comprehensive compliance management programs lenders and their regulators are requiring. The key components include:
>> More than two dozen templates for policies and procedures that agents can customize and brand as their own;
>> Detailed guidance to help agents design and implement compliance programs consistent with best industry practices and regulatory requirements;
>> Technology solutions agents can use to manage, monitor and update their compliance policies and procedures;
>> Training material (in development but coming soon) agents can use to educate the staff members who must understand compliance policies and apply them.
Nick Henderson is the CEO of Omaha, Nebraska-based title agency Title Core, LLC. His business has made the WFG CMS a part of its compliance program. Henderson notes that the system’s flexibility is important at a time when compliance requirements and lender needs may change again: “The system is focused, really, on lender compliance requirements, even above and beyond ALTA’s Best Practices recommendations,” he said. “The overriding philosophy is that this new compliance environment is a journey that lenders and their partners will need to take together. The lender may add additional requirements, so the fact that this CMS is not purely a set of templates, but rather, an effort to examine my agency’s strengths and highlight possible areas of improvement is extremely important.”
“There is not another CMS in the title industry as comprehensive and effective as ours,” said Drum. “The CMS doesn’t provide off-the-shelf compliance programs appropriate for all agents; those one-size-fits-all programs don’t exist. But it will provide the building blocks agents can use to create compliance programs that match their business needs and meet the standards their lender clients have set.”
According to Diamond, “When lenders or their auditors ask for proof of compliance efforts – and if they haven’t yet, they will – agents using the CMS will be able to provide the documentation lenders require and the reassurance they need.”
“The regulatory environment in which title insurance agents operate has changed dramatically and will continue to change,” added Drum, “and our CMS will evolve as well. We’ll be updating it regularly based on feedback from lenders, regulators and agents, with ongoing input and support from WFG’s Compliance department staff.”
O’Neill pointed out that the CMS reflects the heightened priority WFG National Title is giving to its role in assisting its partners in their efforts to meet compliance requirements. “WFG is serious about compliance and the CMS will play an important role in how we assist our partners and clients in that regard. Compliance has become every bit as important to WFG as the original three C’s (communicate, collaborate and coexist) that are reflected in our corporate logo and define our philosophy.”
“We are serious about supporting our agents, in ways large and small, to help them succeed,” said Drum. “WFG exists for that purpose and the CMS reflects our commitment to both priorities ? strengthening compliance and supporting our agents.”
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