If you’ve read anything at all on business intelligence, you know it sounds great on paper. There’s a wealth of material that gives it the sliced bread treatment. But what does business intelligence look like in the real world? How does it manifest itself in the mortgage industry? To what degree can mortgage business intelligence genuinely affect a mortgage company’s bottom line?
One of the more vibrant examples of MBI in action is in the colorful city of Las Vegas. In a region that was the worst real estate market in the country less than ten years ago, Venta Financial Group is thriving. I had the opportunity to speak with President and CEO Jason Madiedo when I interviewed him for an MBI case study in November of last year. One of the first observations he shared with me was his view that production does not equal profit: “We had production, be we knew we weren’t making the money we should have been making,” he said. “So we would do some spreadsheet analysis, make some decisions, and then just keep running.”
Given the time required to perform this type of analysis, Madiedo said that they only made time for it when things were going wrong. “We did it as much as we could, but it was never enough.” His revenue-generating activities dwindled as he spent more and more time wrestling with spreadsheets and putting out fires. He knew there had to be a better way.
Madiedo discovered MBI at an industry tradeshow, and said that when he saw it, he knew he had to have it. “I signed up right on the spot, because I saw right away that it could change our business forever.” He mounted large flat screen monitors on walls throughout the company so that performance dashboards were in constant view. “Our first screen was in operations and we displayed key performance indicators on our underwriters and closers, and I started to hear people talking about their numbers. There was suddenly a competitive spirit in the air, and it was in operations! It was there that I first saw the spark of the right culture. It was amazing to watch.”
Madiedo said the system is doing everything he hoped for, and more. “Now we’re analyzing the business at all times. We have a lot more excitement and discipline now, and we’re more goal driven. In the first ten months of this year, we’ve already had our best year ever, and we’re more profitable than we’ve been in all of our previous years combined. So how can we not be excited about MBI? We’re the organization I always wanted us to be. We know exactly what we’re doing now, and exactly where we’re going. That’s what MBI means to us.”
Madiedo is proud of his company’s transformation, and he’s a vocal proponent of mortgage business intelligence. So it’s no surprise that wall mounted dashboard displays are beginning to appear on the walls of mortgage companies throughout the country.
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