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Rocket Mortgage: Business Strategy and Technology United

By Kris Frantzen 22 Mar 2016

Hello! This is my first blog with Temenos - my first blog ever, now that I think of it. I believe this calls for an introduction! My name is Kris Frantzen, and I'm a new Product Manager on Larry Edgar-Smith's Product Evangelism team here in the United States. 

Kris FrantzenMy first day was February 29, so I'm a very rare "Leap Year Employee". (Although I've been assured I won't need to wait four years for my first annual review!) My experience here in the past few weeks has certainly validated my decision to join Temenos. Everybody has been courteous and responsive, and I note a real sense of professional purpose and pride in what we do permeating throughout the office here in Malvern.

Prior to joining the team here at Temenos, I spent the last 17 years with FIS (or at least the company that became FIS after a series of acquisitions). I spent the majority of my time at FIS as a Product Manager in a team focused on loan origination solutions for financial institutions ranging from large national banks through small credit unions and community banks. That role spanned all aspects of consumer lending - including mortgage - and one of my primary areas of focus was in the direct-to-consumer origination space.

I feel very passionately that the value we deliver to our clients with the Temenos Lifecycle Management Suite, above all else, is to provide out-of-the-box, configurable solutions that empower small to mid-sized financial institutions, positioning them on a level technology-playing-field with the largest financial institutions and their huge IT budgets. This isn't to say a small credit union or community bank in Florida is going to become Bank of America by deploying our Loan Origination module, but there's no reason the experience which that financial institution offers its account holders and staff, whether directly or indirectly bolstered by the technology, can't meet or exceed that of a mega-bank.

So, it is through that lens that I view the world and, in particular, the commercial at this year's Super Bowl (of which my beloved Eagles were not a part… once again) introducing Rocket Mortgage from Quicken Loans.

A product offering like this coming from Quicken is not surprising. They certainly have the resources - their market share in US mortgage originations trails only Wells Fargo and Chase. And they have the focus - Quicken has long presented itself as more of a technology company than mortgage company. Even so, the scope of the initiative and end result are impressive. In providing real approvals to prospective borrowers in 10 minutes & shaving as much as 10 days off a standard mortgage closing process, the Rocket Mortgage makes what is a rather complicated process look very simple to consumers. That's the real art - making the complicated look simple.

Of course, it took a reported five years and a team of at least 450 people to bring the idea to fruition. So, it's a sizable investment by any standard… the Super Bowl commercial alone cost $5 million!

We need not, however, simply gaze awe-struck at the Rocket Mortgage as though Quicken has rocketed (if you will) to someplace in the heavens unattainable by the rest of us. No, as impressive as it is, the Rocket Mortgage is not rocket science. It is a glowing example of what can be accomplished when an organization can successfully align its Sales, Marketing, Operations and IT efforts through a single focus. More specifically, there are a few key components which any organization can enact given the right tools:

  • Focusing on "omni-channel" availability to the consumer. This "anywhere, anytime" access enables the consumer to connect with your financial insitution and product offering through whichever channel and device that best suits his or her needs, and can seamlessly shift channels (i.e. start on a tablet and finish through a call center) should the need arise.
  • Utilizing all available data sources to minimize the required input from the account holder as well as eliminate paper. One way to fully engage data is to capitalize on system integration in order to populate income information for the prospective borrower, eliminating the need for delivery of paystubs or W2s. This streamlines processing and helps to mitigate the risk of fraudulent reporting from the applicant.
  • Seamlessly integrating organizational processes spanning the entire account lifecycle. An offering that streamlines the origination process in such a significant manner relies upon a fully integrated product strategy and process, free of technological or procedural barriers.

These are items that should seem reasonable and familiar to the Temenos family. Just examining our solution for Loan Origination it's evident that we provide a tremendous foundation to the market. 

  • Virtual Capture provides a mobile/online experience for account holders that operates, not as a stand-alone online application, but an integrated component of the overall Loan Origination module.
  • The extensive (and growing) library of third-party integrations, known as “connectors”, allows mutual customers to access data from other systems while working within the Lifecycle Management modules, making the process more streamlined and efficient for all parties involved.

The key components listed above, most notably the final bullet, represent Quicken's greatest benefit in having the business unit and IT department sharing the same home. Our clients rely upon Temenos to provide the software, but the deployment of a software solution alone does not produce the sort of tangible benefit to which every organization should strive. But while the financial institution must play a lead role in creating a truly integrated strategy, the Temenos team also leverages our industry experience and technical knowledge in our efforts to serve as a true partner in aligning business and technology, empowering our clients to "blast off" toward their goals of growth and profitability.

For more background on the Quicken Loans Rocket Mortgage:

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