4 Things You Should Know About Mortgage Data And System Integrations

From an integration standpoint, the mortgage industry is complex, extremely complex. Not only because of compliance requirements or the many products and rates offered but also because of the multitude of datasets that exist throughout the customer and loan lifecycles.

How mortgage data communicate between systems is critical to understand, from knowing where the data in question is housed to understanding how that data moves between systems and how it can be manipulated.

If leadership assumes all data lives in one place and can easily be matched up to fields in the next system, the negative impacts could be catastrophic. This mindset hinders the ability to scale, which is mission-critical for businesses to grow and grow quickly. It also sets the stage for costly system integrations doomed to fail and puts data integrity at risk.

So, what’s the solution? When setting out on a new mortgage data integration, here are a few things to keep in mind:

Recognize How Data Lives and Breathes Between Systems

The best thing leadership and technical and system SMEs can do is recognize that data does not live in one place in the same way. It doesn’t always transpose quickly or easily to other systems. Most systems play well with contact data records, such as John Doe’s contact record and Jane Doe’s contact record. This is mainly because they are flat records, where you have one-to-one data relationships in place. The confusion comes when you start throwing in records that have one-to-many or even many-to-many data relationships. For example, John and Jane Doe may have multiple loans, which they have gotten together and separately.

How do systems understand that John Doe has two loans with Jane Doe as the co-borrower and one loan on his own? And which loan or contacts should get an email offer for refinancing? And how do you track who called or replied or filled out a form related to that specific offer for that particular loan? And most importantly, how do you track that a call tied to that specific offer led to a new funded loan?

Identify Key Objects In Each System And How To Use Them

The examples above are typical questions technology, marketing and system SMEs try to answer by manipulating different types of datasets, also known as objects, and building integrations that map data from one object to the same or different objects altogether.

The trick is to understand what objects are available in each system and how the data can be mapped. Can you map to an object and back, or is it just a one-way integration? Are there additional objects you can leverage that house similar data that you can use instead? For example, maybe you cannot map the funded date on an in-process loan object but can pull that data off the funded loan object instead.

Custom or Native – What Type of Integration Is Really Required?

Integration requirements are another critical consideration. Will an out-of-the-box native integration suffice? It may save time and money and accommodate most use cases, but can it accommodate must-have tricky edge cases?

Too often in mortgage, integrations begin natively. After months of scoping, troubleshooting and roadblocks, a new direction emerges, which leads to a custom integration, either through custom dev work or middleware applications. And while custom integrations typically cost more upfront, they may save a lot more in the long run – time, additional unforeseen expenses and overall team workload.

Put The Right SMEs in Place

The last thing that really makes a difference is having a system SME or SMEs, whether it be an employee, consultant or both, who truly understands object data, how to manipulate data between systems, and how to accommodate business requirements and edge cases.

That last part is important because having a SME who knows their system is valuable but having someone on the team who understands the system and the business needs is incomparable. The correct SME saves time and money, making any extra cost for the right resource money well spent.

Integrations are challenging, but they aren’t insurmountable. With the proper understanding and resources in place, a successful integration is possible, more than one may realize. What it comes down to is understanding the mortgage data and what it needs to operate within the business set parameters. Once those building blocks are in place, the path to success is smooth.