Navy Federal Credit Union’s clever approach to digital business banking

OneSpan Team,

Navy Federal Credit Union (NFCU) is the world’s largest credit union serving 10 million members. Membership is open to all Department of Defense and Coast Guard Active Duty, veterans, civilian and contractor personnel, and their families. Faced with new challenges brought on by the pandemic, Navy Federal Business Solutions, which has over 200,000 business members ranging from small startups to established organizations, built upon its existing solutions to help their business members apply for the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program.

The economic uncertainty and ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has further amplified the importance of financial institutions’ serving their members remotely. As a result, many banks and credit unions began accelerating their digitization and automation efforts throughout the year. Those further down a digitization path, like Navy Federal Business Solutions, built upon existing digital capabilities to better serve their business members. 

In our recent webinar, Our Path to Digital Innovation in Business Banking, Larry Perino, Business Program Development Manager at Navy Federal Credit Union, joined OneSpan to discuss creating a new digital banking experience to manage the SBA’s Payment Protection Program (PPP) loans.

Pre-COVID Digital Business Banking at NFCU

In 2018, Navy Federal Business Solutions brought their business member onboarding and commercial lending processes to the cloud with nCino, a core banking system that sits on the Salesforce cloud CRM platform. They also took advantage of the OneSpan Sign for nCino pre-integrated connector to automate the signing experience in mortgage lending.
OneSpan Sign for nCino’s white-labeled solution made it easy to gather business members’ signatures on closing documentation. Once fully signed and completed, nCino’s workflows would ensure the transaction data, as well as comprehensive audit trails, were automatically transmitted to the Salesforce environment.

New Priorities

With the successful launch of nCino and OneSpan Sign, Navy Federal Business Solutions saw their new business volumes gradually expand in digital channels. Then in March 2020, the global pandemic ushered in national lockdowns.

The credit union was faced not only with the challenge of maintaining business continuity while working remotely, but also how to roll out the SBA’s newly established PPP loan products for business members. It was clear Navy Federal Business Solutions needed to quickly recalibrate their priorities towards supporting their members in financial distress, enabling remote working, and launching new digital channel capabilities.

A poll conducted during the webinar indicated that respondents’ top priorities in response to the ongoing impact of the pandemic reflected those of NFCU: Improving digital onboarding and product origination (33%), bringing new digital channel capabilities live (28%), and replacing/modernizing existing systems (23%).

To tackle their new objectives, the Navy Federal Business Solutions team decided to leverage their existing close partnerships with nCino and OneSpan. Together, they could develop an end-to-end digital experience that would allow members to apply for and access SBA’s PPP program.

Roadmap to Supporting Business Members

Larry Perino described his team’s agile approach to implementing the new digital PPP process, noting that how they continued to refine the process through improved iterations in multiple phases.

Phase One (2.5 weeks of development)

There was little time to prepare for the first round of SBA’s PPP program in spring 2020. They began by integrating nCino’s loan origination system with their internal servicing systems to use their existing business verification processes. This initial solution was developed in under three weeks and could handle the process from application to booking (as well as forgiveness applications), but there was still room to further automate the process.

In the meantime, the Business Solutions team needed to plan to support the larger volumes coming through digital channels. They leaned on their partners across the credit union for added support during the first round of PPP.

Phase Two (3.5 weeks of development)

In preparation for the second round of PPP loans in January 2021, NFCU’s developers built a closer integration with SBA’s portal and doubled their ability to support digital channels. They also activated OneSpan Sign to capture members’ e-signatures without needing to resort to printing and scanning paper forms.

In six weeks of total development time, Navy Federal Business Solutions was able to launch an entirely end-to-end digital lending experience dedicated to handling the SBA’s PPP program. Next, they plan to focus on loan pre-applications to collect loan applicants’ information upfront and better support their member service representatives.

In six weeks of total development time, Navy Federal Business Solutions was able to launch an entirely end-to-end digital lending experience dedicated to handling the SBA’s Payment Protection Program.

Loan Members Accounts Infographic

Digital Business Lending and Onboarding Results

In early 2020 prior to the COVID-19 shutdowns, Navy Federal Business Solutions would process an average of 150 business loans per month. Since the launch of the fully digital PPP experience, application volumes for the program skyrocketed to 1,000 in just the first week. The onboarding of new business members has also steadily increased throughout the past year, reaching levels higher than before the pandemic. Members can now go from loan application to funding in just 3.5 days on average.

By demonstrating their persistence in refining channel operations and the digital experience, Navy Federal Business Solutions was able to provide even more value to their business members. 

Learn more about Navy Federal Business Solutions’ digital business lending and onboarding story during the COVID-19 crisis by watching the recording of our January 19thth webinar, Our Path to Digital Innovation in Business Banking.

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