Four Technology Solutions Impacting Lending Operations Today

A modern lending experience carefully considers all aspects of the workflow. Every member touchpoint is a critical part of the credit union’s engagement strategy and directly impacts the member experience, which is why optimizing your operations is so important.

Optimization streamlines every step to ensure staff can maximize their time with the member and manage volume at its highest capacity. It adds lifts throughout the workflow to increase efficiencies, elevate the member experience, and enhance the quality of your lending program.


Here are four considerations for lending optimization:


1)     Leverage automation. Lending is a complicated part of your credit union’s operations. It requires the right technology to increase efficiency and keep workflows moving. Automation simplifies time-sensitive parts of the origination process and maximizes member engagement.


Consider low-code configurability. It empowers staff to adjust workflows and scale easily with minimal IT or engineering support. Staff can create custom workflows with rules, tasks, and stipulations to reflect the credit union’s business processes. These workflows can also be used to assign tasks based on set roles, which makes for a smoother lending process. Workflows allow cross-departmental collaboration, as multiple team members can view the loan application simultaneously.


In addition, artificial intelligence (AI) is making an impact on lending automation as well. AI’s ability to accelerate processing and funding makes it easier than ever to reduce human errors and save valuable time. This type of automation allows consistent evaluation of documents and data and detects fraud with nearly 100% accuracy. While credit unions are just now starting to take advantage of this technology, results show greatly improved operational efficiency impacting both members and staff.


2)    Optimize decisioning. A good decision engine streamlines underwriting, enhances productivity, and facilitates informed decision-making for lenders. However, you must consider additional actions to maximize decisioning.


For example, when was the last time you updated your scoring model? Are you using the knowledge from your core data to guide your decisions? What fraud tools are you utilizing from your credit bureau or consolidator? Ensuring that the technology you use to make decisions is current, accurate, and optimized can directly impact your overall members’ assessment. 


In addition, AI is proving to add consistency and accuracy that significantly impacts your decisioning. By widening the variables under consideration, the member receives a more accurate and consistent view of their application. AI will continue to grow in capabilities and should be a part of your strategy.


In the end, your overall goal is to ensure more approvals for more people, and by evaluating and optimizing your decisioning technology, you empower internal teams to make better decisions.


3)    Maximize communication tools. Efficient communication is crucial for lending staff to avoid delays and reduce friction. A game of phone tag creates delays and doesn’t bode well for your member experience. Communication tools now streamline interactions between teams and members, increasing efficiency and pull-through.


Credit unions should look for comprehensive communication tools that include efficient document collection, two-way text messaging, instant notifications, and attentive support, either within their current LOS or through integration. By leveraging these tools, staff can optimize productivity by messaging members in real-time from a single, easy-to-use dashboard. This increases employee satisfaction, improves the member experience, and results in higher loan outputs.


4)    Provide a modern loan origination system (LOS) with an excellent user interface (UI). A modern LOS should be intuitive, easy-to-use, and configurable, but it should also have a great UI.


The best UI considers your team's biggest challenges and provides solutions that make their job easier and more efficient. Your team should find the UI accessible and user-friendly despite their experience level. It’s also beneficial if the interface is intuitive and offers some familiarity in design.


Interfaces should be flexible and scalable, with robust admin tools and built-in document mapping to reduce extra steps and accelerate processes. Ample integrations are also vital to your team’s success. 


An updated and intuitive UI with modern technology helps lending staff work more independently and efficiently.


Technology is the foundation of your lending program. Every touchpoint matters, from initial application to funding, and optimizing these processes is paramount. By leveraging the right technology, you can create a streamlined and member-centric lending program, enhancing operational efficiency and elevating the overall member experience. As a result, you’ll see increased approvals, reduced friction, and ultimately, a stronger lending program that benefits both your members and staff.


About Author:

David Adams is the SVP of Lender Client Experience at Origence, the leading credit union lending technology company in the U.S.

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