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B&B Office Systems: Automating the Loan Paper Process

13 Nov, 2005 By: Denise Wray imageSource

B&B Office Systems: Automating the Loan Paper Process

With the real estate market in
Gainesville and Central Florida thriving, Bonnie Cameron, owner of Cameron &
Cameron Mortgage Corporation, was experiencing record business, and she knew her
company was only going to continue to grow.

Despite an effective internal process, the company’s six employees found it
virtually impossible to keep up with the growing volume of documents associated
with the 12-25 loans they were processing per month.

“Processing mortgage files is such a paper-intensive procedure,” Cameron
explained. “We had paper everywhere. Instead of hiring more people to create and
manage our loans, I wanted to explore the possibility of improving the process
and potentially lowering costs by using technology.”

Identifying the Issues and Necessary

Seeking help, Cameron turned to B&B Office Systems, an authorized Sharp and
Konica Minolta dealer, which had been providing her with copier/printer devices
for the past five years. Not knowing if B&B sold paperless business solutions,
but having relied on their office solutions expertise for years, she called John
Liner, B&B’s sales manager.

“After speaking over the phone with Bonnie and getting a pretty good idea of
what she wanted to accomplish, I set up a meeting with her and her team to
conduct a business process survey and needs analysis,” Liner said. “I also
called our document management solutions partner, iDatix Corporation, and asked
for their assistance.”

B&B has been offering iSynergy, a document management and paperless automation
solution developed by iDatix (www.idatix.com), to its customers for about a
year. Liner recognized that the browser-based suite of products would be a good
fit for Cameron & Cameron’s growing document management problems.

The business process survey and needs analysis conducted by Liner and an iDatix
sales engineer identified several areas within the existing manual processes at
the company that could be automated. During the analysis, B&B recognized another
issue that was necessary to resolve for the solution to work.

Cameron & Cameron, like many other companies its size, did not have a complex
networking infrastructure within the organization. They were running the
organization on a peer-to-peer network, using a robust PC as a centralized
server. Having to upgrade to a network operating system with the required
servers would have been cost prohibitive and would have effectively killed the
document management project.

Liner recommended the iSynergy Small Business Solution (SBS) to resolve this
potential project ending roadblock. The SBS is a document management solution
that includes both the hardware and the software self-contained in a network
appliance. It combines integrated document management, business process
management, ad hoc workflow, and capture technologies in a Web-enabled
application. It is offered as a “document management system in-a-box.”

“The iSynergy SBS box made perfect sense for Cameron & Cameron because of their
existing network and lack of available servers,” Liner said. “Everything they
needed was in the SBS box. The only other hardware they needed to purchase was a
dedicated scanner, which we recommended based on the volume of documents they
would need to scan.”

A Fujitsu 4530 (www.fcpa.fujitsu.com) dedicated document scanner was also

“We’ve enjoyed tremendous success selling the SBS solution through our partner
channel, especially our traditional copier/printer partners,” said Robert
Atherton, vice president of business development for iDatix “The ‘everything’s
in the box’ concept is great for the SMB market that does not have a lot of
networking infrastructure or does not have a large IT budget for additional
servers and IT hardware.”

Following a presentation of the results of the business process survey, which
included a live demonstration of iSynergy, Cameron gave the go ahead for the

How the Solution Works

As the mortgage loan files are created, a generic barcode separator sheet
identifying the type of mortgage document is inserted into the loan file. When
the entire loan file is ready to scan, the loan number is manually keyed once
into the iSynergy scanning module as a batch-level index, and the loan file is

iSynergy then “breaks” the loan file into subdocuments on each barcode, reads
the barcode values to determine the document type, and assigns the loan number
to that new subdocument.

Then utilizing iSynergy’s ability to integrate with Cameron & Cameron’s loan
origination software, Genesis, the loan number is matched up in the Genesis
database and the buyer, seller and close date data is brought back and
automatically indexed for each subdocument in the iSynergy repository.

The end result for the scanning and indexing process is a fully indexed
electronic loan file in iSynergy categorized by the different types of documents
for that mortgage file.

How B&B Helped its Client

The major benefits for Cameron & Cameron included:

• The elimination of the overnight shipping charges for each mortgage file
shipped to their various lenders

• The elimination of the labor expense it took to prepare those loan files to be

Because each investor required the loan documents to be sorted in a specific
order prior to the solution installation, the Cameron & Cameron staff would
first make a copy of the loan file and then arrange those loan documents in the
specific order for that particular lender. The loan file was then shipped
overnight to the investors for processing.

After implementation, the mortgage company now delivers the loan documents to
their investors through electronic transfer from within iSynergy, thus
eliminating the shipping charges.

In addition, the software has the ability to create a customized data transfer
profile, which pre-defines the sorting of the loan documents based on the
investors preferred order. Multiple data transfer profiles can be created for
different investors. By clicking a button, the loan documents are sorted in the
preferred order and electronically transferred to the investor, eliminating the
costly copying and labor-intensive manual sorting.

The solution has also given Cameron & Cameron anytime access to documents.
Because iSynergy is browser-based, access to its repository is through the
Internet. When investors or customers call with questions or need a specific
loan document, the electronic loan file can be retrieved in seconds and can be
emailed or faxed to them.

Another feature that adds to the overall customer experience is the ability to
present the buyer and seller with their entire electronic loan file on a CD at
closing. With more and more people accepting digital media and content into
their lives, this added value in customer service has proven to be beneficial.

“The solution has saved us time and money, and has greatly improved our
processes,” Cameron said. “We have also been able to respond to questions or
issues quickly. This has helped our customer service and improved our overall
customer experience. We are currently going back and scanning our closed loan
files and plan to scan our accounts payable invoices in the near future.”

How B & B made the Successful Solutions Transition

Two years ago, Hal Deck, president of B&B Office Systems, a $4 million a year
independent dealership in Gainesville, Florida, knew that he needed to add an
enterprise-capable document management solution to his dealership’s product mix
in order to compete in the marketplace. Hal discusses how B&B made the
transition from selling copiers to selling solutions.

imageSource: When did you realize that you needed to offer document
management solutions to your customers?

Hal Deck: When the industry moved toward digital technology and software
components, I began thinking about how our dealership would need to change to
keep up with the technology. Like other dealers, I noticed a decrease in profits
when selling copiers and an increase desktop computers and printers in offices.
To compete, we were going to need to be more holistic than simply providing

IS: What were some of the important factors for you in deciding on a
solutions partner?

HD: One of the main things we wanted was a user-friendly product. No
matter what technology you bring into a customer’s office, you are asking that
customer to do things a different way. Given that, we wanted the solution itself
to be intuitive.

Many of the solutions we considered were too complicated and required additional
third-party solutions for the product to work. iDatix was the only provider we
found that created its solution from the ground up, so you didn’t need three or
four different software programs. In turn, it’s easier to maintain, easier to
use, and easier to resolve service issues.

IS: What changes did B&B have to make in order to successfully transition
from selling copiers to selling solutions?

HD: We had to change the culture of the entire organization, which meant
leaving our comfort zone and getting more involved with our clients’ network and
business processes. You have to think larger and there’s a lot more research and
investigation on the front-end of a possible sale.

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