One of the persistent pain points for many credit unions and their members is the need to collect, organize, share, and secure a significant amount of sensitive data to price, originate, and maintain a loan relationship. If your credit union has not yet advanced to a digital loan workflow, the pain of data collection to support these relationships is likely even more pronounced for everyone involved. This is why implementing a fully digital loan workflow as part of your credit union’s strategic plan is a smart goal to put in place for 2022.
For credit unions that are in hybrid mode for loans, i.e., still relying on some paper documents and some digital documents, the goal is to move further toward a completely digital workflow.
For those institutions that are using a fully digital workflow, the next level of success will depend on the degree to which their workflow meets the highest standards for efficiency, functionality, security, and compliance.
There’s much to consider when it comes to leveraging all the benefits of a digital loan workflow both from your credit union’s point of view and the standpoint of member service. However, any workflow is only as effective and efficient as the infrastructure it is built on, so it’s worth taking a closer look at best practices for building such a foundation for your institution’s loan processing operations.
The foundation of an ROI-producing digital loan process is a cloud-based DMS.
At the heart of highly productive and profitable digital loan processing lies a cloud-based document management system (DMS). This software serves as a hub for the collection and storage of the required documents as well as the place where members can collaboratively share, e-sign, and keep track of the document needs related to their loan application and loan execution.
Given the robust requirements for document management in the loan process, it is imperative that the strategy you employ to facilitate it creates a higher standard of workflow efficiency and member service, as well as completely satisfying the security and compliance needs of your credit union. Beyond these non-negotiable features are the functional capabilities of the document management system you select for the foundation of your loan processing workflow.
These features can be critically important when it comes to being able to maximize time and cost savings related to your digital loan workflow. Consider that the key benefit of a cloud-based DMS is that it streamlines all document and data collection and management during every step of the digital loan workflow.
One area that is often overlooked in the evaluation and selection of potential DMS systems is that related to the internal and external document request and management capabilities, particularly for loan processing. Any DMS in a loan processing workflow must make requesting, sharing, and accessing loan documents and data simple and seamless. A prime example is the ability of loan officers and processors to ask members for a list of required documents that they can easily upload into a secure, cloud-based portal. The same capabilities should be available to ask the same of third-party vendors such as title companies and loan clearing houses.
The member experience is seamless when it is digitally driven using a robust DMS as the foundation of the loan processing workflow. When using a robust DMS, such as SmartVault, you can create a standardized template for each loan transaction type, connect it to a loan file, customize it as needed, and submit it to your members and potential guests for them to use as a guide to provide the documents you need.
Once a document request form is submitted, your guest users receive an email with a link to upload the requested documents. Also, they can see the request form on their guest portal and easily upload the requested files. From this point, your lending team will receive a notification that files are uploaded and then can access and manage these documents and the data according to their designated access permissions.
The entire workflow is completed with encrypted incoming and outgoing files, utilizing bank-level security. Only administrators of your credit union’s DMS would be able to build and manage these templates.
With a system like this in place, your credit union team can send reminders to your members to upload documents as needed with a simple click. These can be sent as individual or bulk email notifications to the guest users. Your team should also be able to see the progress and status of each request with the right DMS forming the workflow foundation of your digital loan workflow.
While the document request and data management functionality described above is just one piece of the digital loan processing workflow your credit union needs to consider to fully leverage the benefits of moving forward in this area, it clearly is a critical one.
Make a completely digital loan workflow driven by data and documents a strategic priority for your credit union this year. By making the process of requesting and receiving the documents required to initiate, originate, and complete the lending process completely digital in a secure, seamless, and streamlined fashion, you will be able to realize the benefits of advancing your loan processing operations while also enhancing your member service and ensuring your credit union remains fully in compliance with all security and data protection mandates.