THROW THE BABY OUT WITH THE BATH WATER (PART 1: INTERESTING THEME?)

Charlie Lewis defi BLOG, defi ORIGINATIONS, General News, Series-Baby

At some point in your product evolution, you’ll reach a point where you’ll ask yourself, “Is it time to start over?” It’s inevitable. Or it should be.

But what if you’ve recently gotten in bed with your once-top competitor and are supporting two products that do basically the same thing but were founded and developed on (somewhat) opposing principles … and you’re reached that point in both products. What would you do? What did we choose?

defi SOLUTIONS Speakers:
Charles Sutherland, Chief Strategy Officer
Scott Hendriks, Dir. Product Strategy and Product Management
Christian Wilcoxson, Solutions Engineer

This presentation is a part of AFSA’s Business Partner webinar series, which allows industry experts to share timely educational topics directly with AFSA members. This transcript has been edited for clarity and brevity.

Charles: Welcome! The core of the topic that we want to talk today about is this idea about how technology in lending, in particular originations technology, is changing in response to lender needs. And why more so now than ever before, and even more of going into the future, the idea of building a system is really more linked to buying and then building around it.

That’s why the sort of modestly provocative title for the seminar: “Throw the Baby Out with the Bathwater.” Which as a colloquial expression has typically come to mean, don’t throw out that which is favorable (i.e., the baby) with what is unfavorable (the bathwater).

And that really comes back to the decision that so many lenders are having in this digitized, ideally post-pandemic world of lending: How do you build a modern, scalable performing originations ecosystem? What’s the best path? And are the things that you have done before or have built before that are extensible and going into the future?

A typical approach to a webinar would be to have various clients come on and talk from their perspective. But when it comes to this issue of build buy, so much is linked to organizational prerogative structure, it actually gets to be a relatively organizationally intimate topic.

As we talked with prospective attendees, we realized that actually the best thing we could do would be to take a step back from our own roles and rely on the experience that we have in working with so many lenders over the years.

And so, I’m going to run this as a fireside chat between the two, with Christian playing the role of the client advocate. And then Scott more broadly speaking as the vendor technology product view across the industry because many of the principles here are going back not just to defi SOLUTIONS, but to all providers.

What does today’s theme “Throw the Baby Out With the Bath Water?” mean to you?

Christian: With every conversation with lenders, the baby always seems to be their programs and their process and how do they reach their business goals while improving the tools that they’re using to get there? One of those examples would be analyzing an array of application data to come up with a score.

For a lot of lenders, the system is a means to an end, but the actual baby is the program that they’re applying to that, the data that they’re looking at, their secret sauce, if you will, of how they get to that eventual score and decide are they going to give this person a loan or not? And so, that’s really how I interpreted this theme as we step into it today.

Scott: I agree with Christian, I think the biggest concern for lenders, and having been through these migrations, both from a provider perspective as well as the other side, the biggest concern is always around what’s the impact to the business?

Dealers, customers, their concern is an interruption in service. They’re not worried about what’s going to come in the future if that’s at the expense of what’s happening now. So we really have to be mindful that when we do these things, we’re doing them for the right reasons. And the right reason is that all of these things have a lifecycle. All products have a lifecycle. It doesn’t matter what you’re doing or what you’re delivering, whether it’s hardware, software, consumer product, there’s a natural evolution.

And when you look back at where things are in their stage, you have to make hard decisions on what’s the best path forward, and really focus on what are the core things that your customer — whether that’s a lender in our business, or a dealer, or a borrower in your business —  we have to be mindful of the things that got us here, the things that people rely on us for and make sure that those continue.

Sometimes it may require a full restart. Sometimes it may mean taking a fresh look at how you do things. But ultimately, at the end of the day, it’s continuing to provide services and products that allow our customers and clients to build their business and not lose sight of the things that got them to where they are, the things that they have relied on us for in the past.

For more of this conversation:

Part 2: Buy vs Build

Getting Started

defi SOLUTIONS offers lenders an end-to-end, total solution for the loan or lease lifecycle. Partnering with captives, banks, credit unions, and finance companies, defi’s market-leading solution helps lenders exceed borrower expectations. From digital engagement through the complete lending process, defi sets new standards for flexibility, configurability, and scalability in originations and servicing (by your experts or ours). If you’re curious about the possibilities of a complete end-to-end solution for your unique lending lifecycle, take the first step. Contact our team today or register for a demo.

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