Article

Loan Bots and Loyalty

man checking his credit history on mobile device
Contributing Writer
member of Bellco Credit Union

2 minutes

These apps give members another quick, self-serve choice, plus they’re great tools for collecting metrics about the lending process.

Credit unions that automate the front end of mortgage and consumer loan applications with websites that can be accessed through multiple channels—mobile, tablet or desktop—can win member loyalty, says Vic Sunshine, managing director of community markets for Finastra, London. 

The member logs onto the CU’s website and finds a button that brings up the start of the loan application process, he explains. There’s no need to download an app from the app store; the CU is the end user and can complete the data input for the member, he says. Finastra is the new name for the now merged Misys and D&H (formerly Harland Financial Services). 

Finastra has two apps, its original Fusion Mortgagebot and its Fusion Consumerbot. These tools take applications for everything from mortgage and auto loans to credit card applications and unsecured loans. 

A member can use the bots on a computer, tablet or a smartphone. The process is essentially the same on each, he says, with adjustments for screen size. Most automated applications—about 92 percent—still come from computers and 8 percent from mobile devices, but mobile is growing, Sunshine reports.

Loan bots are a loyalty play because they give members another quick, self-serve choice. “We give credit unions the tools they need to compete with the Rocket Mortgages and the megabanks,” Sunshine says. “It takes away one reason the member may go elsewhere.”

Success is easy to measure with volume metrics—number of applications completed, applications abandoned and loans funded, plus average time to complete, he explains. Some CUs make productivity comparisons between self-serve and the branch channel, he adds.

Members using the loan bots provide information, the CU provides disclosures and then the members provide documentation. The documentation can be the challenge for keeping the process automated, Sunshine concedes. Members currently can use the bots to scan and securely transmit documentation from computers and soon will be able to do so from their smartphones, too, he says.cues icon

Richard H. Gamble is a freelance writer based in Colorado. 

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