HousingWire recently sat down with Polly Founder and CEO, Adam Carmel, to discuss how lenders can break old habits and redefine the mortgage process through innovation and modern technology.
HousingWire: As lenders look to diversify their product offerings amid declining volume, what are some of the key challenges that come into play on the tech side?
Adam Carmel: The intent when adding new products or channels is always to generate more revenue. The key challenges lie in the implementation and associated processes that have historically been necessary for lenders to adopt new technology. In the past, tech adoption has been complicated and cumbersome, and often rife with unanticipated workflow requirements and expenses. This is at no fault of the lender. Unfortunately, this scenario is what many have been forced to accept over time because there was not another choice in lieu of the legacy software tools available within the industry.
At Polly, we believe this is a fundamental flaw in the way things have been done. Tech should not be a challenge or barrier. In fact, it should be the exact opposite. Mortgage software should be an enabler and even more so, an accelerator. We understand that lenders need to remain nimble; agility is necessary in a market that is constantly evolving. When lenders have access to the most technically advanced and state‑of‑the‑art software solutions, configuring new products and channels becomes significantly easier. Workflows become automated, speed to market is increased, and lenders can truly optimize the margins and revenue on every single loan.
HW: From your perspective, how should the current market impact lenders' decision‑making in terms of tech adoption?
AC: This is certainly the time to be thinking about and evaluating all parts of a mortgage operation. As we move through 2022 and beyond, so much of a mortgage company's future is going to be dependent on its tech stack — specifically, the LOS and PPE. When it comes to these primary components, it is important to know that other options do exist.
Polly has completely re‑architected the traditional PPE with patent‑pending technology, to streamline the configuration of various elements throughout the loan lifecycle. Lenders can dynamically manage their pipeline and quickly identify where they want to be priced with great precision. This level of accuracy has such a significant impact — probably the most important impact outside of a sales function — in being able to aggregate new volume and increase revenue per loan. Legacy systems that require an abundance of spreadsheets and tree‑ or folder‑type hierarchies are a hugely limiting factor in a lender's ability to configure products, eligibility, and pricing on a dynamic or multi‑dimensional basis.
Current market conditions have granted lenders the time to evaluate their technology. What is the most modern and comprehensive solution available today? Which solution can truly adapt to your unique business needs, scale with your operations, and help drive success?
HW: The pandemic proved the industry's need and ability to adapt quickly, but as we get further into 2022, are you seeing old habits persist in the mortgage process?
AC: In some cases, yes, and in other cases, no. Every mortgage lender has the underlying goal of positioning their organization to adapt quickly. That said, larger mortgage operations inevitably have a larger budget and the bandwidth to do more to develop granular pricing strategies or run the analytics to compete more effectively. But, for those that are not yet large lenders, it can be incredibly difficult to adapt quickly.
We kept these differences in mind and developed an end‑to‑end ecosystem that was designed to provide unlimited flexibility and scale. Whether the mortgage operation is a community bank, large credit union, top 25 independent mortgage company, or a mortgage broker, our system is built to accommodate lenders of any type and size. Polly is the only PPE available today that delivers this level of flexibility, configurability, and scale. We are invested in democratizing the mortgage market — the experience, workflow automation, the ability to dynamically manage and optimize margins, reporting dashboards — all of it. If your organization is not among the top 10 largest lenders in the country, you can still have the same efficiency and tools at your fingertips, enabling you to compete with those larger lenders.
HW: How does Polly empower lenders to break those habits and move forward in an innovative way?
AC: We empower lenders because we understand that the power lies with the lender. Polly is committed to constant and consistent innovation. We look at the entire capital markets vertical and will continue to work toward turning what has historically been a reactive and personnel‑dependent industry into a proactive function that is focused on automation and optimization.
That said, our core obsession lies with our customer. We really care and want our customers' input and feedback. We want to partner with leading mortgage lenders to build what they want and need to satisfy market demands. How can we, together, re‑imagine how the industry could operate in a perfect state? We want to collaborate with our customers to get there.
This executive conversation was originally published by HousingWire