Global economic uncertainty has left consumers with a hunger for knowledge – these days people are far more clued up about loan fees, interest rates and where they choose to put their dollars. It’s driving competition in financing. New Zealand startup Harmoney is riding the wave, with a lending platform set to turn the world of personal loans on its head.
Harmoney is meeting the challenge with technology, creating New Zealand’s first licensed peer-to-peer lending platform, based on App Cloud.
The concept is easy - enabled by the current digital age characterized by disruptive technologies including cloud. Harmoney brings together borrowers and lenders online within a highly automated loan application and approval process that cuts out the meetings and branch networks, as well as the associated operating costs. The net result? A faster, smoother loan application experience – and better rates!
When Harmoney originally came up with the concept for its lending services, it went to market for a cloud platform to base them on. Its top requirement was for easy app integration. “The various stages including loan origination would need to flow into each other seamlessly, with no pauses. And, it had to be 100% online,” says Dan York, Product Director. A CRM engine for managing customer relationships and delivering on service levels was also a must.
On premise systems were ruled out very quickly on security and scalability concerns. Ultimately, Salesforce checked all the right boxes in terms of security, scalability, flexibility, time to deploy and the all important multi-currency capability that was needed to go global.
The resulting solution has a loan origination core created in Salesforce Heroku. The massive flexibility of Heroku lets Harmoney talk to third party credit agencies, and run a whole host of standard banking processes without slowing down the application.
A Sales Cloud CRM engine manages customer interactions, and Harmoney’s platform also integrates a huge number of best-of-class apps. He added; “The more you can automate within the platform, the lower the costs to the customer and the better their experience.”
Whenever you are releasing an entirely new service into the marketplace, marketing is paramount to its success. Realising that its target audience would need to be nurtured, Harmoney invested in Salesforce Pardot, which would integrate seamlessly with App Cloud. The Salesforce CRM/Pardot combination would allow the team to track prospects all the way through from Google Adwords or banner ads through to lead conversion. In Pardot, as soon as a visit to Harmoney’s online environment is logged, the system makes a series of smart decisions concerning what information to send them by email.
“It’s going to allow us to develop lifecycle relationship,” says York “We have the potential to turn borrowers into investors and the other way around as well.”
Pardot also stands to reduce drop off rates as traffic moves through the sales funnel. The Harmoney model is set up to activate drip campaigns to nurture them back in. “Pardot lets us trigger any number of different campaigns based on where the person is in the application process,” explains York. “If they are talking about holidays as part of the loan process, we might email pictures of Bali to get them excited!”
“Our pulse of what’s going on is all in the data,” says CEO Neil Roberts. “Continuously reading the data is how we drive conversions and customer satisfaction to ensure our success.”