Thought Leadership |

5 Tips for a Great nCino Implementation

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Recognise BankTexas Farm CreditHuntingdon Valley Bank

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Regional BankSpecialty Lender
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key points
  • Implementing new technology can be difficult, but having a trusted partner like nCino can make a huge difference.

  • We put together tips from customers who have gone through an nCino implementation to help you better prepare for your own implementation journey.

  • Learn more about the implementation journey by downloading the implementation white paper.

If you’ve ever renovated your home, you know it can be a difficult process. Eating dinner in your garage for six months isn’t exactly a picnic, but the end result—a beautiful new kitchen where you’ll create meals and memories for years to come—makes the journey worthwhile.

Implementing a new software solution at your financial institution can be a difficult process, too. While there probably isn’t a five-star meal at the end of your journey, there is the promise of faster processes, enhanced operational efficiencies and stronger relationships with customers.

The implementation of technology sets the tone for an organization’s digital transformation, so it’s important to have great tools to use along the way. You can’t renovate with a can opener in the same way that you can’t implement a new software with outdated or irrelevant processes. nCino is a partner who has the right tools to help you achieve your goals, along with the long-term vision and experience your institution needs to succeed.

When undertaking a project, whether it’s a home renovation or a software implementation, a trusted partner is key. At nCino, we can’t help you with your kitchen, but we know a thing or two about software. Below are five tips to help ensure a successful implementation journey.

1. Prepare Your People

In order to have a successful software implementation, it’s important to do your homework before the process begins. Understanding the current state of your institution, including your people, processes, technology and data, will help guide your journey and zero in on your end goal.

The best way to prepare your people is to form your nCino project team early. When looking to fill these roles, focus on finding stakeholders who know project management and business process SMEs, and who have both legacy system knowledge and Salesforce competencies. In addition, start to identify the people who will become nCino administrators in the future. Readying your people from the get-go allows them to be involved in the entire process and well-prepared for continued success post-go-live.

During their project, Recognise Bank worked closely with their nCino project team to streamline implementation and ensure knowledge transfer throughout the process.

“It was a collaboration between nCino, our internal IT team and internal Subject Matter Experts”, said Mo Fadaei, Head of Technology, Change and Transformation at Recognise Bank.

Since implementing nCino’s Commercial BankingSolution, Recognise Bank has achieved incredible results, including faster time to close, better regulatory compliance and better employee engagement.

2. Identify Strong Leaders

Implementation can feel daunting, which is why vocal and visible support from your executive team can make a significant impact. These key decision makers are also critical when it comes to resolving any bottlenecks or roadblocks.

"Our entire senior management team was very involved in the nCino implementation from day one,” said Jolene Curtis, Chief Operating Officer at Texas Farm Credit. In addition, Texas Farm Credit’s senior management team took a leadership position based on buy-in and genuine excitement, which spread throughout the Bank and inspired employees to embrace nCino’s Commercial Banking Solution, as well as the Customer Portal and Online Applications features.

Executive support was also key for another reason—the Bank went live in February 2020 just before a majority of the Cooperative’s workforce went fully remote due to COVID-19 and were still able to obtain significant time savings and efficiencies thanks to their use of nCino.

3. Focus on Progress, Not Perfection

When Texas Farm Credit needed to meet the changing needs of a diverse and growing customer base in an increasingly crowded agricultural lending marketplace, they knew multiple, aging legacy systems would not help them achieve their mission or best serve their customers.

"[nCino] helped us challenge things we were doing and offered different ideas for mapping out our processes and deciding how to best configure the nCino platform to fit our needs," says Jolene Curtis, Chief Operating Officer at Texas Farm Credit.

“[nCino] helped us challenge things we were doing and offered different ideas for mapping out our processes and deciding how to best configure the nCino platform to fit our needs,” Curtis continues. “It was a really good time to look at our business and let go of some of the legacy processes as well as systems.”

For a successful implementation, financial institutions should be not just prepared but excited to eliminate processes that don’t fit the vision. After all, the goal is not to automate inefficiencies or improve outdated legacy systems, but to replace them with something better. To that end, it’s best to prioritize small yet steady progress towards your end goal, rather than immediate and instant perfection. Remember, this process is an ongoing journey, not a one and done deal.

4. Stay Focused

Taking full advantage of nCino boils down to continuous improvement. Throughout the implementation timeline, focus on establishing repeatable processes that allow your institution to stay up to date on the latest nCino features and functionality. Stickto the timeline and ensure that knowledge transfer is occurring throughout the journey, not just at the finish line.

One person who understands this better than most people is Hugh Connelly, EVP andChief Lending Officer at Huntingdon Valley Bank. Connelly was an early and enthusiastic adopter of the nCino Bank Operating System dating back to 2013 and had already helped three other institutions implement nCino. At HVB, he led the adoption of the nCino Commercial Banking Solution, and soon after added Commercial Pricing & Profitability. “Part of the reason we were able to implement nCino so quickly is because we didn’t get bogged down; we didn’t try to change things. We implemented nCino ‘outside of the box,’” said Connelly.

The Bank implemented nCino’s prebuilt platform, along with a few personalized functionalities, to meet their needs. Because they stayed focused, they were able to go live quickly, maximizing profitability and efficiency while continuing to refine the system.

5. Support Change Adoption

In general, change is not easy and often, people are resistant to change. Therefore, leadership teams need to be supportive and patient throughout the implementation process.

In order to increase adoption of a new technology platform, financial institutions should identify and empower subject matter experts, so they can transform from SMEs into future champions. This will help employees adopt change now and in the future with more ease. This is a strategy that worked particularly well for Recognise Bank, who nominated nCino champions within the bank, and encouraged those employees to work closely with nCino teams to support a successful implementation.

“Each team has a nCino champion; they represent that team and are able to suggest improvements to the configuration in a bi-weekly committee”, said Mo Fadaei. By keeping their teams engaged, informed and empowered, they saw new technology not as a challenge, but an opportunity. This powerful shift is the secret to implementation projects that result in great adoption and long-term success.

Learn more

A single software implementation sets the stage for greater transformation, and nCino is a partner who has the tools, experience and vision to help institutions achieve it. Learn more about nCino’s implementation journey and how you can transform your financial institution by downloading our implementation white paper now.