With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in the U.S. in early March, the better portion of 2020 has been devoted to adjusting to the “new normal.” Although expectations are high that a vaccine will be readily available by the year’s end, the situation is complex and defies a neat solution.
The COVID-19 pandemic has turbo-charged banks’ drive to embrace digital mortgage technology, and customers aren’t just along for the ride. Their attitudes toward technology use are evolving, too.
Across America, millions of workers have made an extraordinary transition to working from home. We’re accommodating the demands of a global health emergency while still meeting customer needs and expectations.
Where there is growth, change is inevitable. At Promontory MortgagePath LLC, we’re expanding and evolving – and now we’re consolidating our family of businesses under a unified brand. As the new Promontory MortgagePath, we’re integrating our three powerhouse teams into one, marking a milestone in our journey to make the mortgage process faster, simpler and more inclusive for all borrowers and lenders. Since our inception, clients have known Promontory Fulfillment Services as a provider of comprehensive mortgage fulfillment services and PromonTech as the developer of the innovative lending technology fueling Promontory Fulfillment Services’ premium customer experience. As the parent company, Promontory MortgagePath concentrated on leadership and strategy. Officially unifying Promontory Fulfillment Services and PromonTech as Promontory MortgagePath strengthens our ability to better address today’s fast-moving mortgage marketplace. Competitive pressures have never been greater: Customers demand mortgage services from their local financial institutions, and these institutions see mortgages as a powerful
By Colgate Selden The Evolving Role of the Chief Compliance Officer in Selecting Tech and Tech Vendors The digital mortgage promise is compelling: new technology and better workflow meeting consumer, lender, servicer, investor and regulator needs and requirements — all built for compliance and protecting participants from unnecessary risk. If executed properly, the transition from analog to digital drives value all along the mortgage continuum: improving customer experience and education, expanding capacity, reducing cost, minimizing fraud and shortening marketing-to-application approval cycle timing. Regulators have thrown support behind this evolution. Digitally-repeatable processes can help eliminate manual errors and provide auditable, transparent workflows, making compliance elements more transparent and easier to examine. But digital success is not guaranteed: Get it wrong, and you’ve built a platform capable of automating repeatable defects, compliance errors and disclosure violations that could be viewed as fraud, unfair, deceptive, or abusive. Compliance and
BY PAUL C. KATZ Digital Transformation: The State of Play for Community Bankers Digital transformation was on the program – and on the minds of the attendees – at the American Bankers Association Conference for Community Bankers in San Diego this week. I moderated a panel featuring Bryan Luke, President and Chief Operating Officer of Hawaii National Bank, and two of my colleagues, Ken Janik and Colgate Selden. We spoke directly with conference attendees about the relationship community banks have with digital lending. Our panel – Digital Lending: Risks and Opportunities – explored the economic, technological and social forces driving digital transformation efforts. We examined different tech-implementation strategies bankers are considering and conducted real-time audience polls, providing timely insight into bankers’ thoughts on digital lending. Here are some of the highlights from Tuesday’s session. We set the stage by sharing some provocative predictions from leading industry consultants and
BY KIMBERLY GREENE Do you need to operate in the cloud? The phone rings. A quick look at the caller ID reveals that the Social Security Administration is calling. The conversation goes something like this: “Hello?” “Hello, I’m calling from the Social Security Administration. How can we help you today?” “I don’t know, you called me.” “Why don’t you just give me your social security number and we can take a look.” This, obviously, is where the conversation should end. These kinds of exchanges happen every day, where more and more people are subject to phishing scams, fraudulent requests for passwords or other identifying details, malware and ransomware. Businesses face the same threats, but the repercussions are on a much larger scale. Michael Kolbrener, chief technology officer at PromonTech, recently received a similar call. Although threats are real and common, he said that businesses have
Even in the best of times, mortgages can be challenging for community lenders. Fannie Mae reduced its 2019 volume estimate, and the 2020 outlook isn’t much better. Average origination costs have hit a new high – $10,200 according to research by the Mortgage Bankers Association and Stratmor – squeezing margins even more. Factor in increased competition – and the added tech investment – from money-center banks and fintechs, and it’s safe to say we’re confronting some stiff headwinds. Recently, three mid-size banks examined their situations and concluded exiting the mortgage business was their best option . As one CEO summed it up: "We have been in the mortgage banking business for many years and have weathered unfavorable mortgage banking environments in the past. Unfortunately, the current poor operating environment is coupled with fundamental changes in the mortgage banking industry, such as more burdensome regulations, required investment in expensive technology, fierce competition,
You’ve been coding feverishly for ten minutes. You’ve got twenty table joins lined up, and you’re ready to execute your newest monster SQL query. A single bead of sweat rolls down your forehead as you timidly press the button to execute. You watch the SQL engine spin as it starts to process your query. One second ticks by. You think, “No syntax errors!” Three more seconds. Now you’re starting to get nervous. At the ten-second mark, nervousness gives way to panic. Now you think, “Where’s my data?” At twenty-two seconds, two records finally come back from your query. “That’s the data I’m looking for, but why did it take so long?” you ask yourself. Even the best query writers have been here. So, how do you write better SQL queries to improve your execution? Be Linear Map out a linear path from table to table to table – to get
Bankers enjoy a dizzying array of opportunities to leverage new partnerships to cut costs, boost profits, improve technology, enhance the customer experience – and sometimes – all of the above. That’s the good news. The not-so-good news is sifting through an increasingly complex landscape of new entrants and established vendors and vetting potential partners takes time, energy, expertise and money– often more than any one bank can easily manage. This is where a national trade association is uniquely positioned to add value. It can spread research costs across a diverse membership base while evaluating best-in-class providers offering a broad range of products and services. THE ABA ENDORSEMENT PROCESS The concept behind the American Bankers Association’s due diligence process is as simple as it is successful. Its process identifies proven, reliable vendors while saving banks time and money – and uncovering areas of information that could otherwise be difficult to obtain.