RMC Vanguard Mortgage Corp., an independent mortgage company based in Houston that serves customers in more than 25 states, has doubled its employee population in the past two years, despite problems in the mortgage industry.
This combination of growth and a rapidly changing business environment makes corporate training and education a key organizational priority. That’s why Teo Mayes, RMC’s chief technology officer, turned to a wiki as a means to deliver learning.
“The mortgage industry is constantly evolving [and has] a lot of turnover, so it’s important that we have the ability to educate people quickly,” Mayes said. “There have been so many changes in our industry in the last nine months, it’s tough to keep up. Loan officers are constantly in our underwriters’ offices asking, ‘Can I do this? How about this?’”
RMC had been using the traditional shared server/forest of folders approach to store all this information, but this solution didn’t offer the necessary ease of use or accessibility. “Employees have the ability to work from home, so they’d have to log in to a terminal access port to reach the server,” Mayes said. “It was a big pain. We wanted a better way to securely publish information for use by our people, wherever they were.”
Mayes used templates from PBwiki to structure the wiki as a training and educational resource. This allowed RMC to integrate all sorts of information, ranging from Web links to official documents, and the searchability of the system made it easier for loan officers to find what they needed.
This kind of training is crucial for RMC, since the company has been adding a lot of new people who need to come up to speed quickly. The goal is to provide the necessary training while minimizing the time drain on experienced, productive employees.
“Our underwriters use the wiki to educate the loan officers,” Mayes said. “Anytime something changes, they post the new information to the wiki. Now the watchword in the office is, ‘Did you check the wiki?’”
The wiki also has increased productivity. Mayes reported that it saves each of the underwriters about 30-45 minutes per day, and it has saved significant amounts of time for the rest of the employees when it comes to finding documents, passwords and other information.
RMC also found that the wiki provided many benefits beyond training and education. “We’ve created a page for each of our employees, and a company directory with links to every page,” Mayes said. “We’ve even set up an internal ‘For Sale’ page for people who have anything they want to get rid of.”
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