To maintain its leadership position among mortgage industry technology providers, Avanze TechLabs aspires to achieve a highest level of process automation available in the industry. With “touchless automation,” most processes require minimal or no human dependency. The technology offers the intelligence to understand when data is valid without human intervention or when human review is required.
RT Insights spoke with Auvese Pasha, CEO at Avanze about the company’s business goals, enabling technology, and the value provided by touchless automation.
RTI: Which services does Avanze provide to the mortgage industry?
Auvese: Avanze TechLabs is a mortgage-focused product company that provides solutions spanning the entire mortgage loan cycle. We are the technology arm of Avanze Group, which delivers comprehensive and customized component solutions for the mortgage and title industry. Our parent company offers solutions supported by domestic, offshore, and hybrid delivery models.
Today, we support the industry with more than 1,000 mortgage experts from six centers globally. We help mortgage companies gain a competitive advantage by implementing industry best practices, while integrating business intelligence with cutting-edge technology to drive business value and growth.
We solve specific business issues that inhibit the production of loans. One of the critical issues is the time and effort that it takes mortgage companies to perform post-close reviews and timely submissions. It’s very tedious. For most companies, the process is 100% manual and time-consuming. We’re focusing on automating this very specific end-of-the-process for organizations such as title companies and lenders. We want to deliver software-as-a-service (SaaS) that will substantially reduce the effort needed to do post-close QC.
RTI: Why did you seek out automation technology?
Auvese: Our division is quite new. In building our technology foundation, we wanted a solution that offered the greatest breadth of coverage. We needed intelligent mortgage automation technology with the most comprehensive set of documents or classification fields for data extraction. More importantly, we needed accuracy. In order to achieve a truly touchless process, the data fundamentally has to be accurate and reliable.
We did our due diligence, testing the market to see what was available to help us achieve our goal. Post-close QC is a part of the loan production process that doesn’t get a lot of attention, but it does take a substantial amount of time and effort. Most companies try to solve this problem by adding bodies. Some title companies and closing agents do it manually or they’ve outsourced it. But very few technology companies have really focused on solving this in an effective way. We realized that this is an area that is perfect for automation.
It requires domain expertise, appropriate workflow, integrations, and technology expertise. The orchestration is not trivial, because if you don’t have the breadth of coverage and the accuracy, no matter how good the platform or the workflow is, the results are going to be less than ideal. Conversely, if you just have the breadth of coverage, but you don’t have an effective way of applying it, then it’s like an engine sitting on blocks. It’s great, but it’s not going anywhere. We built a platform and a workflow that is purpose-built for post-close QC.
RTI: Where does touchless automation fit in?
Auvese: Touchless automation is our aspiration. We’re trying to get as close as possible to completely touchless – where we don’t need humans in the loop and we know that the data is provably correct.
We partnered with SoftWorks AI in this area, because of their ability to push the envelope, innovate, and drive increasing levels of automation – all with unparalleled accuracy. SoftWorks AI is continually focused on where they can shave minutes from process time, reduce the number of touch points, improve classification and enhance data extraction.
Using the SoftWorks AI technology, we save hours per loan, which has a tangible ROI. Now we can reduce the amount of time for post-close QC activities by about 95%.
Flexibility is equally important. Our environment is fluid, and the mortgage space is not static. There are constantly new documents, disclosures and different requirements that come in from closing. We needed technology that could be nimble, able to pivot, and ready to adjust to changing conditions. SoftWorks AI offers a constantly evolving technology that can keep up with our business.
RTI: Why did you choose technology from SoftWorks AI?
Their technology is purpose-built for mortgage, so it doesn’t have a lot of superfluous bells and whistles. It is optimized for the purposes of transforming unknown documents into structured mortgage data.
They also have a very robust set of REST APIs that allows us to use our technology in a very, very pointed fashion. Our solutions can call the SoftWorks AI classification engine and the data extraction engines whenever we need it. This gives us a lot of flexibility to incorporate the technology into various aspects of our workflow.
Their modular, focused technology makes it easy for our solutions to be used with existing workflows. And as we develop new workflows, we know that the technology is malleable enough that it can easily be applied without any re-engineering efforts. That makes it easier for us to adopt and use, and we can handle change management in our own organization.
RTI: How long did it take to deploy the new solution?
We were up and running within a matter of days. The fact that SoftWorks AI is mortgage built – already pre-configured for the fields, documents and forms we need – significantly reduced our time to market.
RTI: What is the value of the touchless automation technology to your business?
Auvese: It’s allowing us to execute on our business plan, and we’ve been able to go to market quickly with an excellent service.
Most of our processes are not going to be 100% touchless automation, just because that’s not truly realistic. But even at less than 100% automation, the benefits are huge. The reality is that going from a process that was completely manual to one that is 90% automated reduces our labor by 90% and delivers tremendous time savings. The ROI is profound.
RTI: How would you evaluate your partnership with SoftWorks AI?
SoftWorks AI offered us a unique blend of technology innovation and deep mortgage domain expertise. They understand AI, machine learning, and the latest computer vision techniques. They also know how to perform document analysis, understand documents from the bottom up, and map them out to the mortgage use cases. They see how documents are linked to each other, helping us understand exactly where each use case translates into value.
SoftWorks AI understands how to get bots to understand documents the way people would. Other venders or partners start with automating a task – such as simplifying the loan officer’s job. They don’t want to get into the documents or fields we need to ensure accuracy. Or if they do understand how to do that, they don’t understand the mortgage space.
The ability to handle conflict resolution is important in our industry. On a given loan, we might receive three different disclosures. The solution helps us determine if they are really saying the same thing. Did the provider change the terms along the way? Did the terms of the loan change because the mortgage rates dropped?
With SoftWorks AI technology we can answer all these questions. Their technology can automatically identify and focus on the final version of each document and cross-validate data within a loan packet to check for consistency or contradictions.
With expertise in both computer vision and the mortgage market, the SoftWorks AI solution helps us make everything work together.