Grandbridge Real Estate Capital Automation Case Study

The Challenge

As Grandbridge continued to grow, they realized they needed to look for a more efficient way to handle their paper- intensive loan processing system in order to maintain their high level of success and meet customer demands. They were also running out of room and finding it increasingly difficult to keep all the documents needed for each loan in the appropriate location and accessible to each employee as needed. Grandbridge needed a solution that was flexible with a wide-range of functionality to accommodate not only today’s needs, but to allow for future expected growth.

“One of the biggest challenges before our ECM implementation was maintaining efficiency while continuing to grow. Now, everything is located in one central electronic location that can be accessed anywhere, anytime.” – Lyndell Elam, Vice President

The Solution

KeyMark, a systems integration and consulting company specializing in advanced data capture and business process management, worked with Grandbridge to develop a solution that would enable them to rapidly scan, index, store and retrieve their loan documents. This system— consisting of Fujitsu 5900 scanners, Kofax Ascent Capture and Hyland Software’s OnBase Workflow—allows them to cut storage costs, increase customer security and service, improve compliance tracking, and increase overall efficiency.

“ Working directly with KeyMark enabled Grandbridge to acquire all the technology they needed from one vendor with the added benefit of KeyMark’s long- term support,” according to Lyndell Elam, Vice President at Grandbridge Real Estate Capital.

Adopting a New Process

Grandbridge began the automation process by purging files that were outdated or contained unnecessary documents. They converted over 5,400 files from paper to electronic formats—cutting their amount of paper stored by 75%. The hardest part of adopting the new system was getting people to let go of the paper, reflected Elam. Once that happened, it was clear the conversion led to positive change. Borrower request times have improved and with the increased clarity and organization, the Grandbridge staff has bought into the solution.

Improved Business Process

The OnBase System allows employees throughout the department to view files simultaneously without the need for paper copies. It also tracks who views, edits, and approves the documents—helping Grandbridge meet regulatory compliance by creating an automated audit trail.

“The internal compliance department used to spend hours locating, pulling, and sorting through files in order to capture the relevant information needed to help Grandbridge maintain its high S&P rating,” shared Jorjeana Quinn, Grandbridge AVP Audit & Compliance Manager.

The 15-day cycle time has been reduced to between seven and eight days, according to Quinn. Disaster recovery is also a major benefit with the automated system. In an emergency situation, the electronically-stored files are quickly and easily recovered with the help of multiple backup systems.

Grandbridge is a “true” mortgage banker in the sense that they service most of the loans they originate. They pride themselves on being an above-average servicer. To that end, the centralized location of all loan information has improved their ability to meet customer requests. Employees are able to provide customers information quickly through the OnBase System and its integration with other core systems. Employees instantly pull loan information upon request and can attach notes to documents allowing them to provide additional information and better overall service.

Additionally, by storing their clients’ documents electronically, Grandbridge can avoid printing sensitive client information and therefore increase client confidentiality. To further secure sensitive client information, Grandbridge set up password protection and file access controls. Employees only have access to documents they are handling and their use of the system is monitored, which gives managers the ability to track employee activity and productivity.

Pleased with Results

In about 240 days, Grandbridge moved from a paper-based process in which files were stored in cabinets and processed manually, to a system in which all files are stored in a secure electronic system where they can be accessed and processed simultaneously. Processes that took multiple days to complete are now condensed to a few hours. By combining scanning and electronic storage technology, Grandbridge has streamlined their overall servicing operations—reducing a month-and-a-half process to between five and seven days.

“We were pleased with how quickly we were able to see an ROI and how much our business process has improved in less than a year,” said Elam. “Now, everything is located in one central electronic location that can be accessed anywhere, anytime.”

About Grandbridge Real Estate Capital

Grandbridge, located in Charlotte, NC, is one of the largest full-service commercial and multifamily mortgage banking companies in the nation. They arrange permanent commercial and multifamily real estate loans, service loan portfolios, and provide asset and portfolio management as well as real estate brokerage services. Grandbridge services loans on a national basis through their 27 loan production offices in the Midwest and East Coast.