Posted by MeridianLink | May 13, 2024

Drafting Success: Winning Big with the Right Loan Origination System 

The materials available in this article are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your own advisors with questions regarding the content herein. The opinions expressed in this article are the opinions of the individual authors and may not reflect the opinions of MeridianLink, Inc.   

If you’re into sports, you probably caught wind of the recent NFL draft excitement. Every year, teams gear up to improve their chances of making it to the playoffs and hopefully winning the Super Bowl. In preparation for these three days that can shape the future of their season, club executives and general managers across the league have their work cut out for them, evaluating how they can make the team even better while maintaining good chemistry among players. They’re gearing up to make strategic moves, which may include recruiting new talent, implementing improvements, and addressing roster gaps. 

One of the most pivotal decisions they’ll make revolves around their starting quarterback (QB). Serving as one of the captains on the football field, a QB is responsible for calling plays, reading the defense, and executing game plans. Their ability to assess the situation, make split-second decisions, and adjust strategies on the fly is crucial for the team’s success. However, having a quarterback who can’t keep up with the pace of the game can be detrimental, leading to missed opportunities, turnovers, and ultimately, losses. 

The best decision-makers are committed to winning and do not rest on their records or wait and see what everyone else is doing; they play offense. Much like a winning sports team, financial institutions also need to have a well-thought-out strategy and playbook to propel their progress forward. So, let’s transition from football to finance.  

Imagine yourself as a club executive or general manager of your banking team.  

With your current roster and history of service, you know you’re in the game. But is your strategy to ‘hang in there, to just ‘make it’? Of course not. You have bigger plans on the horizon, and you know there’s a glaring gap in the roster—your lending operation.  

Your loan origination system (LOS) is like the QB of your operation, playing a fundamental role in revenue generation, consumer relationships, growth, and risk management. If you find yourself burdened by outdated technology and tiresome lending processes, it may be time to consider retiring your current solution and scouting for a fresh one that can lead your team to victory.  

Luckily, we’ve compiled a list of 10 essential attributes you should look for when choosing the captain of your digital lending experience.  

  1. Streamlined Connectivity Through Direct Integrations   

Being able to establish a direct integration between your LOS and core banking system is key. This bilateral connectivity not only enhances data accessibility but also streamlines the application process by eliminating manual work, reducing errors, and ultimately delivering a smoother application experience that enhances consumer satisfaction. 

  1. Compliance Support That Doesn’t Sacrifice Speed or Experience  

A forward-thinking LOS smoothly drives system upgrades, streamlines operations, and automates workflows—all while supporting compliance. This enables you to seamlessly support consumers’ need for speed, effectively manage regulations, and confidently scale your business.  

  1. Robust Partner Ecosystem  

Modern technology architecture should empower you to adapt to the unique and ever-changing needs of the market and borrowers. Central to this capability is the seamless integration of your LOS to other advanced technology solutions that can further enhance the borrower experience, expand your reach into untapped markets, accelerate growth, and boost profitability. 

  1. Powerful Cross-Sell & Opportunity Engine   

Insights from the BAI Banking Outlook: 2024 Trends survey finds that consumers benchmark their FI’s digital services against their favorite online retailers. And a big part of that experience is delivering relevant offers and communications to consumers when and where they need them most. The right LOS for your institution empowers you to do that—boosting wallet share and revenue—without exhausting your resources. 

  1. Expert Consulting & Support  

Your LOS provider should be a subject matter expert, and that expertise should extend beyond technology alone. Opting for a loan origination solution that includes access to business consulting services to review current processes, help to configure workflows, and provide system administration tips can lead to optimal performance and results. After all, a well-designed setup can directly influence the quality of the experience you deliver. 

  1. Actionable Peer-To-Peer Insight  

The 2024 Retail Banking Trends and Priorities Report reveals that just over half of FIs anticipate using improved data/AI capabilities and actionable insights as the driving force behind transformative trends in the coming year—making it clear that the role of your LOS is to not only capture loans but it should also help to facilitate faster, smarter business decisions. Customized approaches, guided by specific metrics that help you understand how well your operation is performing compared to peers, are crucial in identifying areas for enhancement to keep you competitive. And with the right LOS, accessing this data doesn’t have to be complicated or costly.   

  1. Uncomplicated Access To Reporting & Analytics   

Tackling accessible reporting and data analysis within a legacy system can feel like an unwinnable struggle—consuming time, costing a fortune, and laden with risks. Yet in today’s lending landscape, finding a solution is essential. Your LOS should help you overcome these obstacles with built-in reporting that facilitates detailed data analysis and a clear understanding of your portfolio’s overall health, identifying opportunities to enhance efficiency and elevate the experience for both consumers and staff.  

  1. Point-Of-Sale That Isn’t an Afterthought   

With a notable 49% of consumers ready to switch financial institutions for enhanced digital capabilities, the expectation is clear: a seamless, frictionless experience. Central to meeting these demands is the integrated point-of-sale (POS), streamlining the consumer-facing application and opening avenues for cross-selling. As consumers navigate effortlessly, the integrated POS becomes a gateway to a more personalized, efficient, and satisfying interaction.  

  1. End-To-End Origination for Continued Growth  

The Financial Brand reports that three out of five people are looking for more than one banking provider. Consolidating all new loan and deposit applications into a single point of origination offers more than just a consistent experience. It also acts as a strategic gateway to introduce consumers to the full spectrum of financial services you provide, which can reduce the likelihood of them seeking out these services elsewhere. The account origination process is an excellent time for screening additional pre-approved products, positioning your institution to address all facets of their financial needs while seamlessly guiding them through application processes more efficiently.  

  1. Truly 100% Cloud-Based Lending   

Last but certainly not least, a browser-based and cloud-native loan origination system can strategically position your financial institution to elevate consumer experiences with seamless, uninterrupted service while ushering in new levels of operational efficiency and effectiveness. It’s important to discern true cloud-based solutions from virtualized versions of legacy software labeled as ‘cloud-based.’ Genuine cloud solutions, like MeridianLink®, democratize access to advanced products and services, driving efficient growth, facilitating faster, more accurate application processing, optimizing data access, and nurturing enhanced collaboration within your operation and among third-party vendors. 

Choosing the right LOS can mean the difference between a turnover on fourth down or securing the game-winning touchdown, yielding financial gains for both your institution and consumers. As a trusted digital lending partner with a 25-year track record of helping our customers succeed, we’ve crafted this guide to assist you in navigating the complexities of modern lending technology. Download the full checklist here to start your journey toward enhanced efficiency, profitability, and consumer satisfaction.  

Or, watch our on-demand webinar to discover the tangible results achieved by our customers who made the strategic shift to a solution that prioritizes each element on this list—MeridianLink® Consumer!    

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