How Thinking Capital is increasing approved loan applications and reducing their reliance on call centers with Community Cloud and Sales Cloud
Thinking Capital is a Montreal-based lending institution that specializes in providing small businesses with merchant advances, an innovative financing solution that aligns with the cash flow of any business. These advances provide a high level of flexibility to small businesses across Canada. They also provide more structured financing through term loans for bigger businesses. Since 2006, Thinking Capital has supported over 10,000 businesses across Canada, lending more than $400M over that period and continuously supporting 200-300 businesses per month.
As their business continues to grow, Thinking Capital has looked to scale their business with technology rather than additional bodies. With this in mind, they turned to Salesforce and Traction on Demand.
Thinking Capital was experiencing a 10-15% weekly turnover rate in their 100 person call center. This was due in large part to lengthy sales cycles. Forms and other data sources that needed to be manually sent to the applicant were filled out and sent back, delaying the sales cycle and often causing applicants to drop out during the process. Reps were spending too much time qualifying applicants and only found out that they didn’t qualify for the loan late in the process.
The above issues ultimately meant that sales reps were missing their monthly quotas.
In summation, Thinking Capital’s sales and call center system was not optimized for on-boarding an increasing number of applicants. They needed a solution that could automate the process and allow reps to focus on the more difficult applications.
Deploying Sales Cloud as a solid foundation for creating a 360 degree customer view, Traction implemented a fully customized and branded self-service Salesforce Community that integrated seamlessly with the Thinking Capital website. The website was built by Traction on the Force.com platform while also leveraging Heroku. Built entirely within Salesforce and with a responsive design, the project features can be accessed with any device type.
The Community houses both the application process for initial applicants as well as the management process for merchant loan payback.
The application process integrates directly with a number of payment processing terminal solutions (i.e. Moneris), so Thinking Capital can access the merchant’s individual credit/debit terminal and directly collect loan payments from the merchant’s daily sales (based on a predetermined payback schedule).
The Community integrates with DocuSign to collect any required documentation immediately, reducing the overall application time. Traction developed a dynamic process where, depending on lead information, the correct loan application document templates are generated in a DocuSign iframe. This means the applicant always has the right documentation based on dozens of different criteria (location, language, loan size, etc.).
The loan management component provides members with a comprehensive view/understanding of their loan repayment schedule. It also provides merchants with additional opportunities to take out further loans and other supplementary benefits (aggregated reviews of their business, refer-a-business incentive program, etc.)
Thinking Capital currently has 5,314 active Community licenses, demonstrating a high level of engagement from their customers. The self-service community has resulted in a reduction in the merchant approval period from days (often weeks) to 20-30 minutes.
Since project end, 80% of loans are pre-approved without any manual intervention from call center reps. This means reps can spend more time supporting those applicants who are not immediately approved for a loan. The self-service Community has provided an enhanced customer experience and has increased engagement significantly, resulting in more primary and supplementary loans being secured on a self-service basis.
Thinking Capital has successfully transformed their growing loan application and management practice to scale their technology rather than their employee base. The project integrations with Salesforce, Docusign, and the financial institution allow improved customer experience and employee ease of use. Money is deposited immediately upon approval and signed documents are digitally managed and easy to access. Sensitive documents of many formats no longer need to be sent by email.