BLOG VIEW: Mortgage servicers remain under heavy pressure from regulators and investors and have, therefore, learned to carefully manage their vendor relationships. Quality, compliance and speed of delivery are all critical concerns. The vendor that pays close attention to technology and understands how to use it effectively will be more likely to deliver on all of these.
There are some clues that will let the servicer’s vendor manager know that the vendor can deliver. These clues are all hidden in the technology tools that a vendor uses to manage its business and supply the servicer with its product or service. Technology aids in delivering quality and can help to ensure compliance, but its primary benefit may be that it speeds up well-designed processes. Thus, vendors that employ technology well are likely to deliver faster than those that do not. The following clues will inform servicers that a particular vendor can deliver.
The vendor uses technology to take orders
Whether they are title agents, special servicers, attorneys or lien release specialists, vendors that make placing your order easy will come out well ahead of their competitors. Whether it involves orders sent over email, orders entered through online logins at portals/over mobile, or ordering via a direct integration with your servicing platform, make sure that your vendor can offer these conveniences.
The vendor uses technology to manage orders
A servicer should be able to manage placed orders with very little external help. This includes viewing the orders that the servicer has placed through an online user interface and changing priorities or rushing specific orders as needed. If the servicer must use the telephone or send an email to get information, the vendor isn’t leveraging technology well enough.
The vendor uses technology to deliver reports
Traditional reports delivered as PDF files only lead to additional manual steps when they are entered into the servicer’s system. XML reports can be used to update the servicer’s platform, making the information available to the servicer’s staff as soon as it is released by the vendor. Nothing less is acceptable today.
The vendor uses technology to deliver automated quality assurance
It may not be possible for automation to carry the entire compliance load, but much of the standard items that must always be checked can be automated. Vendors will employ technology to the full extent possible, taking every possible step to ensure fully compliant products and services. In today’s environment, the servicer can accept nothing less.
If any of these clues are not present in your current relationship, it may be time to seek out a new – or, at least, additional – vendor partner.
Timothy Moreland is senior vice president at ATPR Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of SLK Global that provides technology-based solutions for the real estate lending and settlement services industry, including SmartProp, a next-generation search product delivering a range of property reports.