Russ Gould is vice president of product and solutions marketing for Kofax. Gould’s enterprise software expertise spans content, process, compliance and document-capture
disciplines. He is a published author with more than two decades of technology product marketing and consulting experience. Connect with Gould via LinkedIn at
linkedin.com/in/rjgould or via Twitter @rjgould2. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mortgage origination and processing fall squarely in the middle of the opportunities — greater productivity and increased efficiency — promised by digital transformation. The
key component to the digital-transformation strategies that
will propel the mortgage industry into the future is called
robotic process automation, or RPA.
Because digital transformation is happening in what some
call the age of engagement, it is driven by improvements in
operational processes, mobile access to products, and services
and personalized customer experiences. This is where RPA fits
in, by helping companies meet customer expectations and
resolve manual processing issues.
As a key component of digital transformation, RPA dramatically changes how customers, employees, partners and others
work together across critical business processes. By mimicking
the repetitive tasks handled by employees — collecting and
integrating data among external websites, portals or various
desktop applications, for instance — RPA creates a digital
workforce. This eliminates the manual aspect of repetitive
tasks, amplifying productivity and avoiding costly errors.
RPA’s smart software robots enhance the customer experience by improving processes. They can, for example, automate the entry or retrieval of information from any system.
This includes application of sophisticated business logic to
transform data, handle exceptions and make faster decisions
for competitive advantage. Employees benefit as well, and are
typically happier focusing on the most productive aspects of
their jobs instead of repetitive, data-gathering activities.
Ideally, the entire process is digitized, from borrower
engagement and employee onboarding — either online or
via mobile apps — all the way to back-office processes such
as loan approval, underwriting and loan closing. When digital strategies focus solely on the front-office customer experience, however, they miss opportunities to enhance the
customer journey, reduce costs, keep the competition at bay
and maintain compliance — all of which can impact originators’ relationships with their borrowers.
In a mortgage setting, RPA facilitates a head-on approach
for meeting loan quality, compliance and cost concerns. Any
task where a human interacts with an application or data
source can instead be handled by a software robot. As these
repetitive and time-consuming manual tasks become auto-
mated, loan originators and processors can focus on more
important tasks and details. Data is more accurate, reporting
metrics can be tracked better, and operational costs and loan
timelines can be reduced by automation.
When software robots are deployed to quickly and efficiently handle mortgage lending tasks throughout the process, processing speed is improved. Monitoring e-mails, pulling in data and documents from various internal systems, and
reconciling data between enterprise content-management
and loan-origination systems are all examples of tasks that
can be handled by robots, freeing up staff for more strategic
activities. With automatic collection and cleansing of loan
data, loan applications are approved quickly and generate
revenue faster, while originators can focus on building business relationships.
Accelerating the collection of required data in turn speeds
loan approvals, and enhances customer engagement and
satisfaction. A leading European bank, for example, automated the extraction of loan-application data from a third-party portal and connected the information into its internal
system and processes. The organization was able to quickly
and efficiently present offers to borrowers, reducing response
time from 14 days to just minutes.
Gathering and verifying documentation and entering
information into various systems are all manual tasks that
can instead be handled via RPA, which can reduce operational costs while increasing efficiencies. One leading bank
achieved 100 percent automation, eliminating manual errors
as well as the additional work necessary to correct mistakes.
When automation is introduced into the mortgage origination process, manual tasks and costs also can be reduced in
the post-closing process.
RPA also can decrease risk and improve compliance. Normally, employees would verify the integrity of a loan file, but
this critical action can now be performed by RPA. Software
robots can automatically package digital loan files as part of
the quality-control and audit-review process. Audit processes
themselves are further streamlined by ensuring all of the
correct documentation is in order.
Seeing RPA in action
RPA is already proving its value by improving mortgage
lending services, strengthening risk and compliance management, and enhancing customer service. Return on
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