BUSINESS BANKER standard

PROBLEM Commercial lending is complex, involving multiple systems and actors. Risk managers and account managers aren’t on the same page: one has the goal of increasing revenue and the other has the goal of preventing losses. The decision-making process and the time to pay are littered with pitfalls that lead to costly delays. APPROACH BusinessBANKER is an all-in-one platform that helps institutions process their business loans from initiation to closing. Everyone is on the same page and clearly sees what needs to be accomplished. BusinessBANKER makes users more productive because it reflects the way bankers think.  This advantage was accomplished using a unique cognitive engineering approach. RESULTS Increases productivity and customer service by 75% Decreases costs by 30% 2.5 x ...

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Back Office (Montrusco) standard

PROBLEM The CEO of Montrusco Bolton compared their operations with industry benchmarks and realized that increasing the size of the back office would have resulted in a higher cost of operations than benchmark for investment managers. The back office was already working overtime regularly.  APPROACH With cognitive analysis, Cognitive Group was able to analyze how employees process information, what problems were encountered and the impacts on operation costs. It was discovered that 50% of the workload in the back office was due to subtle but preventable human errors from the front office. Many of these errors had not been detected with traditional means of observation.  Thirty causes of errors were identified. Of those 30 causes, 5 error types represented 80% ...

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DIRECT BROKERAGE (NBC) standard

PROBLEM There was great pressure to improve the user experience as the competition in Canada and elsewhere was fierce. Ratings by analysts were unfavourable. Even though many design firms claim to have expertise, most emphasize visual rather than functional design. In brokerage, the main factor is to ensure that the content and organization of information is compatible with the task. This challenge is heightened because there are many investor profiles with potentially different needs. For example day traders, buy and hold, those looking for dividend securities, others who trade options, etc  APPROACH The president of direct brokerage who had already done business with us at Desjardins called on our services. We first did cognitive task analysis with the main users. ...

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Mortgage Adjudication (RBC) standard

PROBLEM In the context of a new system implementation, Cognitive Group was asked to review the cognitive task of mortgage adjudicators and identify potential optimizations.  APPROACH We performed cognitive task analysis of 30 RBC mortgage adjudicators. We analyzed the mental operations, knowledge and reasonability test used by experts.  The adjudication time average was 20 minutes:  18 minutes for verification including cross checks and two minutes for decisions.  Ten percent of adjudicators were doing preliminary adjudications first while 90% were doing verification first. Using cognitive task analysis, we were able to demonstrate that the task redesign should include a preliminary adjudication and would save 10% of their time and reduce mental workload. We also specified the new system UI  to support ...

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Online Insurance (TD) standard

PROBLEM TD Insurance, a leading online insurance provider, has exceptional traffic on its website. However the company was not happy with its closing ratio. Only 25% of visitors who began the online quotation process followed it through to the end.  APPROACH Using large quantities of user interaction data, we identified where users dropped out. We then did user research to understand why users were dropping out and proposed redesign of the UI to prevent abandonment.  We predicted a 20% increase in sales. RESULTS The completion rate increased by 20% after six months. This increase translated into a recurring multi-million dollars in increased sales. The payback period on the initial investment was less than six months. EXPERTISE USED  DATA SCIENCE  USER ...

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Micro-Finance (CreditKash) standard

PROBLEM Providing financing to small businesses that do not have financial statements and rely on the informal economy is a major challenge for emerging economies. Current microfinance methods are loosely structured and vary from person to person. The challenge was to systematize in a simple and practical way the analysis and evaluation of risks for micro-credit.   APPROACH We did a cognitive analysis of experts and were able to identify which mental operations and cross checks were critical for informal credit scoring.  In less than two months we configured a version of Business Banker that allows a business manager to create a micro credit application without training. Through a series of structured cross checks (for example the last days of sale ...

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AI (BNDE) standard

PROBLEM The challenge in the business loan arena is to prevent back-and-forth communication between the risk managers, account managers and the back office. The aim is to reduce the turnaround time.   APPROACH Over the past five years at BNDE, we accumulated data about back-and-forth communication between the loan applications and risk departments.  Instead of predicting the probability of default based on the risk models, we sought to predict the probability of back-and-forth communication between the risk and business departments. We implemented automatic data capture. We developed models that weight the factors according to their predictive value. A rule engine automatically detects a deficiency in credit preparation and notifies the sales representative. RESULTS The project is currently underway.  The model is ...

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Business Banker (BNDE) standard

PROBLEM National Bank of Economic Development of Senegal (BNDE) needed a complete end-to-end review to allow them to develop an internal risk rating and loan origination solution.  APPROACH It was recommended that BNDE adopt Cognitive Group’s Business Banker application.  Business Banker was originally designed for RBC. The challenge was to find how to adapt it to the West African context. Business Banker is designed the way bankers think. It is user-friendly and incorporates functions that are normally distributed over several applications. This synergy makes it possible to integrate information between credit applications, risk rating and securities. For example, the debt service is calculated automatically from the entries on the credit facilities and automatically generates the debt service coverage ratio, etc. ...

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Loan Origination (RBC) standard

PROBLEM The account manager complained for years that the loan origination system was difficult to use. There was no hard factual data that could justify an investment in improving the Loan Origination System (LOS). Consequently, improving the LOS was not part of the time saving programs.  APPROACH This project began with a field study using cognitive analysis to gather facts on the current process.  Twenty account managers, risk managers and back-office employees were met and observed. Cognitive Group was able to analyze how employees processed information, what problems were encountered and the impacts on operation costs. A total of 88 error types were uncovered that caused lost productivity and delays costing $30 million per year. RESULTS Based on Cognitive Group’s ...

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Risk Management (RBC) standard

PROBLEM The renewal process represents 40% of the account manager workload. Fifteen percent of files were past due.  APPROACH We did a cognitive analysis of risk managers, account managers and back office employees.  It was found that the bottleneck was the risk rating process.  The key findings were: 1) The Moody’s RiskCalc™ took lots of time because the account manager had to enter over 30 entries and navigate through 10 pages.  2) The approach of calculating the debt services varied from region to region. Debt service is the biggest contributor for evaluating the Borrower Risk Rating (BRR). A discrepancy of just 2bps in pricing represented a loss of $10 million per year.  3) The management evaluation by the account manager was subjective, ...

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