How We Piece Together Mortgage Professional Dream Teams
February 2nd, 2018 Written by: Molly Masterson
As a bank or lending institution, you know there are a lot of critical moving parts within your organization to move a mortgage loan from origination to processing to closing. Not the least of which is your team of mortgage professionals. Because there are so many considerations and regulations behind a mortgage, it’s necessary for lenders to create a cohesive mortgage team that can work together to efficiently approve and service loans.
Creating a mortgage dream team is a complex puzzle, though. Without the right pieces, your team won’t be approving mortgages efficiently or be able to provide extraordinary customer service.
With multiple years of experience in mortgage recruitment and staffing, we have a strategy for finding the best team of mortgage professionals. From their experience level down to their skill sets, there’s a method to our recruitment practices. Here’s an inside look at how we approach piecing together mortgage teams.
Puzzle Piece 1: The Communication Savvy Loan Originator or Officer
The loan officer or originator is ultimately responsible for bringing aspiring and current homeowners into your organization. As a result, you need someone who can interact and meet with homeowners to convince them that you’re the right lending institution for them. To fulfill this need, our strategy is to focus on candidates with sales and social skills over service.
When reviewing officer candidates, we first look for good sales and marketing skills or experience. For example, if they have previous experience in retail, telemarketing, or other sales-oriented positions, they could make a great fit as a loan officer. We also look for candidates who have exceptional communication skills as they will need to clearly communicate and convince homeowners that they’re a trustworthy organization. With good communication and experience in persuading others’ purchasing decisions, they can make an excellent loan officer that keeps the rest of the team plenty busy.
Puzzle Piece 2: The Ultra-Organized Loan Processor
Lenders know that processing is an important stop in the mortgage’s life cycle as it can catch mistakes made by the loan officer and preps the rest of the mortgage team. They also need to file the mortgage with the correct government entity and document the lender’s information so the underwriter and investigator have everything they need. It’s a lot of paperwork, but it needs to be accurately done in order to secure funding for the mortgage.
To source top processors, we search for candidates with excellent organizational skills to appropriately file the application and record it with the correct parties. Having worked with seasoned processors and people new to the role, we look for individuals with proven experience in loan processing, inventory management, data entry, or other highly organized jobs. In addition, we’ve found that the best processor candidates have experience proofreading as it allows them to easily catch any mistakes made in the mortgage before it is passed on.
Puzzle Piece 3: The Detail-Oriented Underwriter
Underwriters have a very detail-oriented position that requires little to no customer interaction, but has tremendous impact on your lending institution. Responsible for assessing the lender’s application and deciding what kind of loan you should offer, the underwriter has a crucial role on your mortgage team. With such a unique and critical skill set, it can be difficult to find quality underwriter professionals.
With the responsibility of deciding the mortgage structure and amount, we first search for experienced candidates who have a deep understanding of risk and investment so they can put together mortgages with maximum profitability. We’ve also found that the best underwriters work well within a team structure and have great written communication skills. Even though they don’t communicate with clients, underwriters with great written communications are able to clearly communicate their mortgage structure and give the investigator all of the information they need to approve or deny the mortgage.
Puzzle Piece 4: The Research-Driven Credit Investigator
Credit investigators on your mortgage team also deal in risk assessment, reviewing each lender to determine the creditworthiness of the person or people. Because the credit investigator and underwriter have similar positions, many employers make the mistake of searching for similar candidates. However, by tailoring your candidate search for each position, you’ll find more qualified talent for both roles.
Considering that investigators need to analyze several sources of financial information for each mortgage that crosses their desk, we look for good researchers first and foremost. This means looking for people who have experience as a financial analyst or in analyzing datasets. Similar to an underwriter position, we also look for credit investigators that are knowledgeable in risk, assessment, and investment. With these qualities, we can trust that they can approve or deny mortgages with a critical and accurate eye.
Puzzle Piece 5: The Helpful Loan Servicer
As you already know, a loan servicer is the person who is ultimately responsible for servicing homeowners and maintaining a great customer experience. Because this job requires helping homeowners, it stands to reason that you need a loan servicer that is good at answering homeowner questions and putting them at ease. This means they also need to be good with numbers as they may need to field interest rate and payment questions.
Due to these job responsibilities and requirements, our strategy is to look for loan servicers with a background in customer service. If they have previously worked previously as a loan servicer or customer service representative, it shows us that they have the capacity to absorb a lot of knowledge and possess the wherewithal to handle customer concerns and questions. In our experience, we have found it best to also screen for candidates that have worked with numbers, either in their education or in their work history. This ensures that candidates can quickly and accurately provide homeowners with information on their owed payments, interest rate changes, etc.
Find Your Mortgage Dream Team
At the end of the day, you can’t piece together a dream team without being able to attract and retain the best mortgage professionals. As an experienced mortgage recruitment agency, we can help you bring in a mortgage team you’ve been dreaming of. Request talent with us now to get started.