For all the technology buzz you hear day after day about wizardry and innovation, none of it means much, as has been proven time after time, without collaboration.
That couldn’t be truer when it comes to Cenlar’s automation efforts.
Cenlar is striving to automate many of its processes. We are not automating for automation’s sake. We start simply by asking, “how can we help?” – a question that aligns with our approach to client service.
Helping today means adding tools that move us from a manual, touch-heavy environment in areas across the company. Our aim is to reduce risk and, at the same time, free up a gifted team for analytical work that advances our business and improves the service we provide to clients and their homeowners.
To be successful, teams led by IT Director Shanth Ananthuni and Director of Operations Production Jeremy Oliver have worked with individuals and groups across the organization, including Loan Operations, Operational Change Management Servicing Reporting, Controls, Compliance and Risk. Our Business Information Officers set the scope of the project, translating the business process into what type of automation we do. Our goal is to make our automations well-rounded and crowdsourced.
Automation opportunities are funneled, scoped, and prioritized by a cross-functional team, which then distributes to multiple automation developments or pods. These pods can be scaled up or down based on demand. The same cross-functional team monitors automation results and continuously improves existing automations.
We are not fully functioning teams if we cannot communicate with each other to identify real need. Through open and transparent internal communication, we’ve identified 30 areas where technology can drive our business while making all of our work more rewarding.
Among the automations we’ve launched so far is a mortgage insurance cancellation process. This automation eliminates the need for the approximately 7-8,000 homeowners each month who wait for a determination on whether their request to remove mortgage insurance has been approved. Homeowners simply are able to go to the homeowner website and request the removal, triggering the automation. The bot will accurately determine whether the homeowner still needs the insurance then within one week send a letter to the homeowner indicating the decision.
Another example is with payoffs. In 2021 about 90,000 loans per month were being paid off through a manual process. We’ve since adapted technology so that more than 90% of those payoffs are quickly and efficiently processed with a bot. About 82% of our clients’ homeowners are using this automation to make a payoff request.
We are excited about these early successes with big impact for homeowners and by extension our clients. The role of the very best technology teams is, after all, not presenting a list of formidable, futuristic technology but asking the question, “how can we help?”