Just a few short decades ago, a host of pop culture – including The Jetsons and Back to the Future – predicted that the 2000s would be entirely digitised and full to the brim with flying cars. While we haven’t quite reached those lofty heights, we are well on the way to a fully-digitised society.
As such, many businesses and organisations are digitally transforming. Supporting these initiatives is Sopra Banking Software (SBS), which is working with Kensington Mortgages (KMC) to digitally overhaul its services.
“SBS is a global software and services organisation that supports the full lifecycle of products that are used by retail banks and financial institutions,” explains Richard Broadbent, Managing Director.
“That's everything from origination products to the operation and maintenance of those, covering savings, lending and transactional banking. From a customer perspective, we again support a very broad range of organisations, including high-street banks, specialist lenders, and building societies.”
From a capability perspective, SBS’s rich variety of solutions and innovation focus mean it’s able to support organisations throughout the journey of onboarding customers to the closure of accounts or collection of funds.
“KMC specialise in certain segments of the mortgage market in the UK; the software and services that we provide effectively underpin their business operations right the way through the full engagement cycle that they have with their customers.
When SBS started working in partnership with KMC, the process followed two core strands: digital product innovation and customer experience. “On the digital side, we’ve helped KMC automate the origination of mortgage products, as well as focusing quite heavily with them on how to integrate other third parties into that origination process.
“We've also spent quite a lot of time working with them around the optimisation of the broker journey, making sure that the service is fine-tuned to meet the very specific needs of the brokers that are helping originate mortgages on customers’ behalf,” Broadbent says.
When it comes to digital transformations, it’s easy to get lost in the technical language used. Luckily, Broadbent is more than adept at summarising the nature of SBS’s partnership with KMC as being “all around optimisation support for their business evolution”.
“Quite often, people will talk about the replacement of legacy technology that isn't necessarily fully able to support the organisation’s business ambitions, which may include evolving or introducing new business processes. Particularly in the mortgage market in the UK, there's been a huge explosion of the FinTech community. Customers often want traditional banks and brokers to start integrating elements of what these FinTechs offer into their overall service proposition. Being able to support that is becoming more and more critical.
“From an innovation perspective, the market moves on quite quickly, so it's very competitive. A lot of our customers want to be at the forefront of innovation, either with products or services that they offer. The responsibility that we then have as a partner for those organisations is to support that continuous evolution of their business to make sure that they're either market leading, competitive or they can fulfil the core tenets of their brand.”
Since the beginning of SBS’s and KMC’s partnership, the former’s work has resulted in KMC being able to “work with third parties in a much simpler, quicker, and easier way”. Together, the two “co-created a new digital solution”, of which KMC became “an earlier adopter”. This solution covers the origination of mortgage products, and opened up KMC’s core systems so it can work far more effectively with partners.
In terms of core banking, SBS has also supported much of KMC’s innovation around the new products it has launched in the mortgage market. One that KMC has focused quite heavily on is its green mortgage – essential in a more socially and environmentally-aware age – which brings together financial services and social responsibility under a single product type.
Of this angle, Broadbent says: “It's great to be able to support someone like KMC to be at the forefront of offering those kinds of green products to market.
“It's a really exciting time for Kensington Mortgages at the moment, and we’re looking forward to the continuation of our partnership optimisation programme, supporting KMC with its aspirational growth.”
Read the full Kensington Mortgages' digital report HERE.