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Lender onboarding process lays solid foundation for customer success

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By Amy Tankersley

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6m

Kimberly, a chief operations officer at a national mortgage lender, is laser-focused on meeting her organization’s target revenue goals. Seeking to propel her company forward with technology and process improvements, she understands that she cannot be a mortgage and software company at the same time, and relies heavily on her title and escrow partners to enhance the customer experience.

Heather, a mortgage loan officer, concentrates on providing borrowers with the best mortgage product based on their needs and qualifications. Completing as many loans as possible in a short period of time is her top priority.

And Jason, who manages the day-to-day operations of a bank’s mortgage department, values quick response times and efficient delivery of products and services to clients without delay or disruption.

This is a snapshot of our customers’ goals and challenges, which States Title tackles with a combination of powerful data analytics capabilities and a bespoke customer service and success solution. Our unique model features a nimble concierge team that manages each file from beginning to end, serving as a knowledgeable single point of contact and coordinating with the production team to resolve complex title questions. Each stage of the file is continuously tracked to ensure we are meeting the lender’s expectations. Once a closing is complete, the operations excellence team conducts a thorough audit of each file to assess performance and identify areas of improvement.

But before we process a lender’s first transaction, we must lay the foundation for customer satisfaction and success. Our well-constructed, thorough onboarding process for new customers ensures that our lender customers – and ultimately, the borrowers who are their customers – enjoy a fast, convenient closing experience. This ensures high customer satisfaction (CSAT) rates for every file we process.

Welcome to States Title

The onboarding process officially begins with a kickoff call with the lender that serves as an introduction to the States Title team, our capabilities and service model, including our focus on using powerful data analytics to track and measure performance.

Lenders then complete an extensive questionnaire to gather information about their volume expectations, market and competitive concerns, and any negative experiences they have had with former or current title partners. Members of our concierge team dive deep into their organization’s goals, the needs of their customer base, and preferences for service and communication.

These preferences are memorialized in service level agreements (SLAs) that are continuously tracked and shared with the customer to ensure they are being met.

“The access we have to data informs us about how we are doing, and presents these insights to the customer in ways they have not seen before from other title providers. So often, you can collect and share data, but it’s the story the data tells that is interesting. Just sending them a bunch of line charts doesn’t do that, we can drill down on any areas we see potential issues, and dig in to figure out why and fix for the future. Lenders are so impressed with our ability to grasp what is going on in their business with the analytical and interpretive layer we provide,” said Jasper Bear, States Title’s Director of Customer Success.

With the SLAs established, after a few more meetings, the States Title customer success team completes the lender’s customer profile and account setup, and beta-tests it to ensure functionality.

“Customers appreciate how thorough this process is and how we ensure there are no problems going forward,” said Nate Jones, States Title’s Senior Manager of Customer Success. “This process ensures that borrowers have the best closing experience possible, and any lender who is focused on customer satisfaction rates appreciates that.”

Seamless, future-proofed systems integration

Last – but certainly not least – we ensure we are integrated with our customers that maximizes the efficiency and experience of working together. This could mean through an LOS, middleware solution, or an API-based integration. Through the integration, lenders can create and manage title orders, oversee documents and structured data, communicate with States Title staff via a secure messaging system, and receive up-to-the-minute order status and notifications.

States Title currently offers solutions for three integration strategies:

  • Integration with “middleware” systems such as ClosingCorp and TitlePort
  • Direct integration with loan origination systems (LOS) such as Encompass
  • A publicly available application programming interface (API) that provides developers programmatic access to a proprietary software application or web service

Depending on the integration approach required, customers can be up and running anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. Once we know your technology and preferred integration approach, we counsel our customers on the most effective way to get integrated and the associated timeline.As the relationship progresses, States Title seeks opportunities to optimize the integration and provides resources for the continued deployment of new enhancements and features when needed.

Once the lender has completed its first 50 title orders, the States Title Customer Success team shares metrics on time to close, any hiccups in the transaction flow, and common error rates, and identifies areas of potential improvement.

“We can tell you, for example, that orders processed using our instant underwriting solution typically take four fewer days than the traditional title commitment process,” Jasper said. “We can also tell you that we were able to deliver a final title commitment within 12 hours on 95 percent of transactions.”

This transformative service model offers lenders a solutions-driven partnership with us as their title provider, and end-to-end accountability we practically insist on. Applying machine intelligence and data analytics ensures increased productivity that will not need to be significantly updated as technology advances. As a result, loans close up to 20 percent faster and lenders can see profit margins increase by as much as 35 percent.

“I think title insurance is often viewed as a commodity, and having as little friction as possible is everyone’s goal,” Jasper said. “We view it as adding value, rather than simply avoiding pain. We imagine a specific life cycle for each transaction for our customers, and try to guide them through it in a proactive way. Customer success as a function continually looks at its own processes and tweaks them to improve them, so our other goal is to keep getting better at what we do. We are very focused on creating conditions that allow for expansion. We’re growing along with our customers as they grow.”

In a recent video interview with The Real Deal, States Title Founder and CEO, Max Simkoff, explained how adding a bespoke service layer to the instant underwriting solution “has changed the nature of underwriting.”

“We have basically changed the nature of the work that people are doing so they can be more focused on relationship management and communication with loan officers,” he said. “We went into this with eyes wide open and also excited about being able to combine the best parts of this new business together.”