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Case Study: Financial Services Operations Executive

Industry:
Finacial Services
Company Type:
Title Insurance Provider
Company Size:
$1.7B
Job Functions:
Operations
Solutions:
Performance Management, Information Architecture, Data Integration, Datamart Creation

Challenge: How to deliver and leverage comprehensive high-quality information and modern performance management tools to manage a national network of 8,500 field offices.

Key Component in Real Estate Finance

Our client is a $1.7 billion provider of title insurance and related services to the real estate and mortgage industries. It also provides post-closing lender services, automated county clerk land records, property ownership mapping, geographic information systems, property information reports, flood certificates, document preparation, background checks and expertise in tax-deferred exchanges. 

The real estate and mortgage industries are transaction-intensive and information intensive, and the company’s business strategy is to compete on high quality customer service and in-depth technology expertise.  The company operates through more than 8,500 policy-issuing offices in the United States and overseas.

Order Analysis and Managing Operations Performance

Effective operations management is essential for competing in the title insurance industry, where customer service is an important discriminator and productivity drives both top-line growth and bottom-line results. 

Because the title business is heavily influenced by state and local legislation, the transactional systems are implemented on a localized basis, resulting in roughly 50 different implementations of the transactional systems.

This made it difficult to report on, analyze, predict, and improve the results of operations.  More specifically, executives were challenged in the following ways:

  • it was cumbersome to get a complete picture of the  volume of orders in the pipeline, which made forecasting, demand planning, and resource planning difficult
  • it was hard to obtain a complete picture of the order processing performance across offices, which made it difficult to identify and correct performance shortfalls
  • it was difficult to establish performance baselines and targets for order processing and then compare actual performance to targeted performance, which was a barrier to improving productivity through root cause analysis of performance gaps
  • it was hard to get a picture of order trends at each office, regionally, and nationally, which made it hard to plan for cyclical changes in overall demand for it’s title insurance services.

More broadly, the lack of business intelligence and business performance management tools made it hard for the company to proactively manage operations in support of attaining company market share, productivity, customer service, and profitability objectives. 

 From a business intelligence (BI) and business performance management (BPM) perspective, the challenge boiled down to organizing and delivering business information about operations so that it could be leveraged by modern BI and BPM tools and used to drive operations performance.

Order Analysis Data Mart – Driving Operations Performance

 The company selected DecisionPath for its BI thought leadership, experience in the financial services industry, and ability to help clients achieve a holistic view of key facets of operational performance.  Using its BI Pathway Method, DecisionPath partnered with the company’s BI team to design, develop, and deploy an Order Analysis Data Mart and an underlying enterprise data warehouse to support order analysis and other key future BI applications, such as customer analysis, productivity analysis, and financial analysis.  More specifically, DecisionPath and the company’s BI team:

  • designed an operations management dashboard that delivered key order volume, order processing performance, and closings volume metrics
  • defined an enterprise data architecture and subject area data models
  • formulated and executed a data integration approach to acquire, cleanse, and consolidate order information from over 50 transactional data sources
  • designed, developed, and deployed the Order Analysis Data Mart, which provided 34 key multi-dimensional views of operational performance.

Seeing the Big Picture

Armed with multi-dimensional information about order trends and order processing performance, the company has been able to skillfully manage operations performance, adjusting to the adverse market conditions in 2008 through 2010 and maintaining its strong customer service.  Company executives, directors, and managers have the tool they need to balance resources with demand, manage productivity, and optimize profitability in the face of the worst recession in modern times.

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