Today’s business borrowers demand a lot more than just good rates. They expect to communicate with their lender via a variety of channels at a time that suits them. They are too busy running their own businesses to prepare thick files of financial information. And they want to deal with partners whom they regard as having a modern, world-class business model and technology stack.
Luckily, a new generation of automated loan origination technology can help community banks meet this challenge with greater efficiency and better customer service. Here are five steps to improve your loan origination process to meet the expectations of the new breed of borrowers.
1. Leverage new tech to boost efficiency.
Today’s credit origination software can integrate a bank’s customer relationship management (CRM) database with limit and exposure reporting in addition to spreading, risk rating, facility structuring, collateral management, and covenant monitoring. This streamlining can cut the time to fund a loan by as much as 30 percent to 40 percent, enhancing client service.
2. Raise the bar on transparency and consistency.
Many banks still employ manual processes and spreadsheets that result in inconsistent underwriting and lack of transparency. Modern loan origination systems standardize underwriting by putting consistent data on a common platform, where it’s available to staff who need it. The system also records each step in the lending process and generates an audit trail to facilitate compliance and internal audits.
3. Get the most out of your risk data.
Financial institutions generate vast amounts of client data, but most are not very good at managing it. How banks create, store, and make use of data, in particular risk data, will become more important with the advent of new regulation such as the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision’s risk data and reporting rule 239. Traditional issues such as duplicated, erroneous, and dirty data will all need to be addressed systematically to meet these new standards.
4. Make better decisions with a single source of truth.
The inability to identify risk concentrations for related borrowers was responsible for heavy losses during the financial crisis. Even today many banks still track positions with manually updated spreadsheets or adding up numbers from multiple systems. Having a 360-degree view of the credit relationship creates a golden record of client data under more accountable ownership.