In September I had the awesome privilege to co-moderate a fireside chat with the winners of the 2015 ELFA Operations and Technology Excellence Award. Over the course of several preliminary interviews leading up to the event, I was able to dig deeper and deeper into the project stories. The recording below is the actual fire-side chat with the winners during the ELFA Operations and Technology Conference in Philadelphia, PA on September 18, 2015.
Here is what stands out to me from this year’s winning project stories.
- Both projects were customer experience driven.
- Both projects were powered by a very tight business/technology relationship where we almost see the lines blur between business and technology. It's not about business or technology it's about business powered by technology.
- Both projects were successfully completed ahead of schedule and under very aggressive timelines.
- Both winners elected to build vs. buy their solutions.
- Both winners incorporated process improvement into their projects.
- Both winners used non-traditional and innovative approaches to making awesome happen for their businesses.
These are not the same old stories of implementing fundamental technology packages, rather, each winner took a bold approach to attack a new area of business process, apply contemporary technology, create new opportunities, and set up their business for exponential growth.
Element Financial Corporation
This project team attacked a complex set of processes for fleet title registration in a very interesting way using non-traditional approach, cool technology, tight business technology partnership with co-located development resources, and disciplined focus on process optimization. Interestingly in this story, the actual technology takes a back seat to the approach they used to implement the technology. This is a story of leadership. The results speak for themselves. Listen to their stories about the power of embedded IT and the "2.0 effect."
Quick Bridge Funding, LLC
This is a story of applying cutting edge technology to well thought out processes using a non-traditional approach. There are several things I loved about this project story. They went opposite of the current trend choosing to build vs. buy. With their tight business/IT partnership, they focused on building the right platform to enable the right business processes. Not only did they partner with business stakeholders to involve them in requirements gathering, they went back AGAIN and questioned everything they did to really understand the essence of why they do what they do before building anything. Listen to this story to hear about the power of innovation culture and a business and technology relationship so tight that we ask them to clarify, "Is this a Fintech or Finance Company?"
Note: This audio is used with permission of ELFA, both source and owner of the recording.
Hal Hitch, CIT Equipment Finance, Chair of the ELFA Ops & Tech Excellence Award Subcommittee
Hamlet Khodaverdian, VP Technology Quick Bridge Funding LLC
Nicholas Roberto, VP Credit & Operations Quick Bridge Funding LLC
Todd Binnix, Process Re-engineering Element Financial Corporation
John Karolenko, VP Operational Excellence Element Financial Corporation
Andrew Cotter, Somerset Capital Group
Deborah Reuben, Reuben Creative, LLC