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Why banks are prioritizing system integration & document automation

8 min read
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The banking sector has seen remarkable growth and transformation in recent years, propelled by evolving customer demands, the rapid emergence of groundbreaking technologies, and an increasingly competitive landscape populated by both traditional financial institutions and innovative digital challengers. Moreover, these changes come amidst a backdrop of tougher, more comprehensive regulatory standards that seek to ensure stability, transparency, and trust in the financial system.  

In this ever-changing and highly dynamic environment, the ability to adapt and integrate innovative solutions across systems and processes stands out as a critical success factor for banks. System integration plays a critical role in the banking industry’s evolution, and it has quickly become a primary focus for institutions aiming to remain competitive and responsive to market demands.  

A key facet of this integration process is document automation. This approach streamlines operations, enhances efficiency, and significantly reduces human error, marking a transformative step forward in how banks operate and serve their customers. 

What is system integration?
System integration is vital for modernizing business infrastructures in the banking industry, as it unites diverse systems, applications, and databases into a cohesive ecosystem. This integration bridges the gap between legacy systems and new technologies, facilitating efficient data exchange and service delivery.  

An essential aspect of system integration is document automation technology, which automates the creation of documents from integrated data sources, such as customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems. This integration significantly increases efficiency by automating document generation, reducing errors, and ensuring consistency across documents. It also enhances compliance and enables businesses to quickly adapt documents to reflect changes, improving responsiveness to market dynamics. 

Why is system integration essential to modern banking? 
Banks and credit unions utilize a diverse array of systems, from core banking systems that form the foundation of financial services to CRM systems that enable personalized customer interactions. Integrating these systems into a cohesive whole delivers compelling outcomes, including: 

Improved customer satisfaction 
Integrating banking systems provides customers with the accessible and personalized digital banking experiences they expect, which fosters greater loyalty and satisfaction. By offering faster onboarding, self-service interactions, and less clicks to completion of banking transactions, your customers are getting premium embedded banking experience. Ultimately catering to the unique requirements of their customers and forging stronger relationships. 

Greater efficiency 
Integrating systems and automating processes allows banks to significantly reduce manual errors, streamline workflows, and optimize resource utilization. They can also connect securely with fintech companies and other third-party service providers through APIs. 

Lower risk 
As system integration automates critical compliance processes, banks and credit unions can ensure adherence to Anti-Money Laundering (AML), Know Your Customer (KYC), and other regulatory requirements. 

Spotlight: how system integration enables banking document automation 
System integration is revolutionizing document management, an area of banking operations that is traditionally plagued by inefficiency and the potential for errors. Systems integration for document management refers to the process of combining tools and technologies to seamlessly manage a bank’s documents, including document generation, distribution, storage, retrieval, and disposal.  

Because core software and applications like email, CRM, ERP, and project management tools become tightly integrated, users can populate documents with data from any source. It’s also easy to send and save those documents as needed.  

Leading automated document management solutions allow banks to: 

Generate templates 
The best document creation software provides multiple options for generating and preparing standard or custom templates for distribution. 

Ensure document accuracy 
By automating document generation, you eliminate the need to copy and paste data into documents manually. Ensuring the correct information is included the first time avoids costly mistakes and rework. 

Present documents professionally  
How a document looks to the recipient can significantly impact their actions. Automation solutions ensure that documents are personalized, on-brand, and free from formatting errors. 

Ensure on-time document delivery  
The best solutions offer multiple options for sending, signing, and saving documents, giving banks everything they need to complete every document transaction on time, every time. Additionally, having an embedded document automation system offers clients more of a self-service experience. Ultimately allowing them to access the documents they need wherever and whenever they need them. 

Use cases for document management automation in day-to-day banking operations 

As banks and credit unions continue to make the transition to automated revenue processes through document automation, they are getting out of the Revenue Friction zone—eliminating manual work and human error—leading to incredible business results like these:  

  • 23% increase in sales revenue  
  • 27% increase per renewal  
  • 25% improvement in win rate  
  • 26% faster cash cycle  
  • 25% decrease in contract processing time  

 We call Conga customers who achieve these impressive gains by removing revenue friction from their document generating processes our Revenue Growth Champions. Two such examples are Cooperative Finance Association (CFA) and Pellegrini Financial and recently on our web series, Banking Master Class, they shared some results from their automation journey. Here’s a piece of their inspirational stories: 

CFA: One of CFA’s primary automation objectives was replacing a 20-year-old legacy system that had been put in place to electronically replicate manual paper processes. Implementing automated document generation within their lending process allowed CFA to streamline customer communications, easily generate large volumes of proposals, and automate proposal pricing details—resulting in:   

  • Instant generation of key reports that previously took 24-48 hours  
  • Dramatic growth in asset portfolio, directly correlated with digitizing customer relationships and removing process complexity through automation  

Pellegrini Financial: Pellegrini customers tend to be less tech-oriented, so reports and financial plans are often still delivered in paper form. So their automation efforts have been more focused on internal processes to streamline data and deliver those reports as efficiently as possible. Using Conga solutions allows them to leverage their CRM data in new ways, generating large quantities of branded documents with the click of a button. Quantitative results include:  

  • More than 55 working days saved per year  
  • Over $71,000 in cost savings annually  
  • Top 3 benefits of document automation  

Regardless of your institution’s priorities or the specific ways in which you use apply document automation, there are three key benefits that are designed to improve ROI:  

  • Cost reduction: According to McKinsey, businesses are reducing documentation costs by up to 90% by automating their processes.  
  • Faster turn times: The Association for Intelligent Information Management found that businesses can reduce cycle times by up to 80% through document automation. 

 Here are some additional areas where document automation can make a significant impact on banking’s day-to-day operations:  

Customer onboarding 
The first touchpoint sets the tone for the entire banking relationship. Recent research from J.D. Power revealed that customers who have a positive account opening experience are 73% more likely to become promoters of the bank. Automating the creation and processing of account opening documents, KYC forms, and compliance documents streamlines the customer onboarding process, reduces paperwork, and ensures compliance with regulatory standards.  

Loan and mortgage processing 
Automating document generation for loan applications, agreements, and related paperwork can expedite the loan approval process. This includes generating pre-filled forms, calculating loan terms, and ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements. For banks involved in mortgage lending, document automation can streamline the generation and processing of mortgage documents, title deeds, and related paperwork. This reduces the time it takes to close a mortgage transaction while improving customer satisfaction.  

Advanced document generation solutions include eSignature technology, which expedites loan applications and other crucial transactions, significantly reducing turnaround times. 

Compliance reporting and audits 
Document automation can help generate compliance reports, internal and external audit trails, and other paperwork needed for regulatory submissions. These solutions take care of all data inputs, so you can rest assured your reports are populated with accurate, relevant data, including correct currency, date, and geo-specific formatting. 

Account maintenance 
Automating ad hoc account updates related to address changes, beneficiary updates, or account closures can also save valuable time for both customers and internal teams. 

Document automation ensures that all changes are accurately recorded and processed promptly.   

Risk management  
Keeping accurate records of all documents created and sent is a critical component of robust enterprise risk management. Document automation solutions automatically save files in the repository of your choice, making it easy for teams to reference them when needed. Document automation can also assist in generating risk assessment reports, policy documentation, and internal control procedures.  

Regulatory disclosures 
Banks are required to provide customers with various disclosures, such as terms and conditions, fee schedules, and privacy policies. Document automation allows you to set workflow rules like reporting dates, to automatically create and deliver documents to customers whenever they’re due.  

The best solutions include functionality that allows you to: 

  • Create and send large numbers of documents all at once, reducing repetitive work  
  • Run multiple records at once or at intervals, either scheduled or on-demand  

Internal documentation and communication 
Document automation can also streamline and expedite internal processes like generating internal memos, policies, and procedures. By automating these documents, banks and credit unions can ensure that employees always have access to up-to-date information and standardize communication across internal departments.  

Customer correspondence 
Automating personal customer correspondence, such as account statements, transaction confirmations, and notifications, improves customer service and communication while reducing the workload on internal teams. Document automation can also assist in batch distribution of generic customer communications, like new product and service promotions, which need to be sent out to hundreds or even thousands of recipients at once. 

Case study: document automation in action 
Conga customer Mount Yale Capital Group is a financial services firm that deals with multiple accounts per person, often with multiple customers in a single household. In the past, this required significant manual effort.  

Team members would create a document in Microsoft Word, generate a PDF version, print out a hard copy, and put it in a file. Then they’d mail the document to the account holders with sticky notes indicating where signatures were needed—and the customer would then have to send it back. This created a confusing situation with many versions of the same document and no way to search existing files for specific information. 

By deploying Conga Composer, Mount Yale was able to unify siloed datasets to create multiple documents in a single account. Composer's pre-populated templates allow Mount Yale to create a document in minutes with the press of a button. 

Now, every data point in every document matches a data point within the software—so internal teams can search in Composer rather than digging through individual documents. And thanks to Conga Sign, customers can easily and securely sign documents electronically on any browser or device.  

With Conga, Mount Yale has significantly increased the speed and accuracy of creating account documents sending them for signature, and getting them signed, with the transparency to track the progress along the way.  

Want to learn more? You can read the full case study for details. 

Start your system integration journey here 
Integrating core systems and deploying a document automation solution puts banks and credit unions on track to drive operational efficiencies, reduce costs, and enhance the overall customer experience while ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements.  

Watch a two-minute video to learn how Conga’s document automation solution, Conga Composer, can help transform your banking business operations. 

Ready to explore more? Meet with a Conga expert to find a solution that’s right for you. 

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