Change is afoot. Maybe it’s the shifting finance patterns of the Millennial generation that’s causing the fuss, or simple adjustments to consumer buying habits. Regardless, the fact is this: Changes in the way people buy cars and get them financed are impacting both dealers and lenders. These consumer-driven demands for faster, more efficient and personal transactions are causing deep waves of change throughout the entire industry.
Remember the computer programmer in Jurassic Park? He was a rotund loner whose workstation was littered with soda cans and empty potato chip bags. The Hollywood stereotype of software engineers is The Lone Coder, a social misfit who shuns human interaction. He can make magic happen with a few clicks of his mouse, but he probably does it from the solitude of his parents' basement.
In real life, The Lone Coder makes mistakes -- lots of mistakes. Answerable to no one, The Lone Coder designs a system only he can understand, and no one else has a prayer of maintaining or modifying. The Lone Coder is a threat to the growth, security, and stability of a computer system. Scariest of all, entire software "teams" can be full of Lone Coders, each one marching to his own beat, following her own whims, leaving a cloud of chaos behind in their wake. Their product might work, but it is a house of cards.
Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams, a book by Tom DeMarco and Timothy Lister about sociology in software engineering, uses the phrase "cult of quality" to define a team that has decided "only perfect is good enough for us." DeMarco and Lister write that while most of the world won't argue for higher quality, members of a cult of quality will "always turn out something that's better than what their market is asking for." And this usually doesn't happen because of any dictate from upper management. Most often it's the team members themselves holding themselves to a higher standard.
The Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA) passed in 1999. Coincidentally, that was the year I joined AmeriCredit, and my journey in auto finance began. I was in my 20s and full of ideas about how great auto finance could be with less paper and leaner, faster processes.
So here we are in 2017, more than 15 years later and auto finance has more paper than it did in 1999.
"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again." It's an old cliché that has proven especially applicable to successful engineering projects. Thomas Edison owned over 1000 patents, most of which never amounted to anything useful. WD-40's name is short for "Water Displacement, Formula 40," implying it was preceded by 39 failures. And Steve Jobs oversaw the release of numerous underwhelming products before he changed the world with the iPhone.
But in its earliest days, software engineering took a different approach.
Financial technology and lending decisions are built on data. Lenders can buy data in the form of reports, statistics, and bits of information about consumers and their buying habits from hundreds of companies and accumulate mountains of their own new data from every portfolio and process.
Employing certain practical ideas, lenders can get the most bang for their data buck and gain insight that can translate to real advantages.
Is your company customer centric, innovation centric, product centric? Or a balanced combination of all? According to defi Chief Product Officer Kartheek Veeravalli, immaterial of industry or product these three concentrations are what make a company and its product successful.
With the support of the right technology and industry experts, lenders can jumpstart the process of discovering patterns, improving their understanding, and evolving their loan portfolio.
The importance of information analysis and use of actionable insights in driving auto lending business decisions was made obvious at this years’ Auto Finance Summit 2016.
From industry terms to company strategy, Stephanie Alsbrooks answers it all with a depth of understanding backed by auto finance experience.
Here’s what Dear Stephie talks about out in the latest issue of Non-Prime Times :