What a Workflow Analysis Can Teach You About Your Business
Learn what a proper lending workflow analysis can show you where your company’s process has become too complicated and veered off the road into potential trouble. It can show you how to simplify your workflow and eliminate costly and inefficient steps that hamper, not help, your productivity.
Many financial organizations have a workflow that is believed to be well-tuned and running smoothly. While that may be true in some situations, the reality is that there are times when something in the process becomes misaligned and suddenly productivity and profitability are negatively affected.
It’s important to question if your workflow running the way it should, but the mere analysis of a workflow can be uncomfortable. Some parts of an organization might worry about expensive fixes that might be needed but a financial workflow analysis can help your business do what it does best.
It starts with understanding customers’ short and long term business goals around secured transactions-related processes (UCC, Mortgage Recordings, and Motor Vehicle Titling). This step typically includes an initial meeting with senior management (likely a Loan Operations Manager, Senior VP, or Chief Operating Officer) to discuss the initiative and outline the process.
Simplicity and Flexibility – the Noblest Traits of a Workflow
The more complicated a system is, the more opportunity there is for something to go wrong and the more difficult it is to fix the problem.
In the lending world, a typical workflow consists of well-defined steps. It begins with origination, moves to underwriting/credit check, then on to closing, followed by servicing the loan, and finally, the end of loan. At first glance, that seems simple enough.
A proper lending workflow analysis can show you where your company’s process has become too complicated and veered off the road into potential trouble. It can show you how to simplify your workflow and eliminate costly and inefficient steps that hamper, not help, your productivity.
Industry changes are another area where unwelcome complexity can throw off your workflow’s efficient operation. The business world is not static. It’s dynamic.
A Good Workflow Analysis Asks Questions
A good workflow analysis always starts with a question, because that’s the only way to arrive at an answer. But you have to ask the right questions in order to get to the heart of the problem. Just as important, once the problem is identified, you have to be strong enough to accept the answers, even if they are not what you want to hear. A good workflow analysis is a two-way street, where information flows in both directions. If done properly, this two-way street arrives at one common destination: a workable solution.
No step or task within a process is too small to be documented and several questions may be required in order to get the “big picture” of the entire process. Often times, it’s the little details within a process that shed light on potential areas of improvement. It requires the individual completing the task to be open to answering questions around the steps (no matter how minor/small they may seem) as these provide valuable insights to the consultant who is not familiar with internal procedures.