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Singapore’s OCBC Bank Approves Mortgages in 60 Minutes Using FICO Technology

One of Asia Pacific’s leading banks wins FICO® Decisions Award for customer onboarding & management using FICO® Origination Manager

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Customer Success

SINGAPORE – February 9, 2021


  • OCBC creates self-serve online 60-minute ‘instant mortgage’ approval service.
  • Bank leverages FICO® Origination Manager as decision engine to drive application process.
  • During the lock-down period, $700m loans were signed-up.
  • OCBC won a 2021 FICO® Decisions Award for customer onboarding & management.

Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation, Limited (OCBC Bank), a multinational banking and financial services corporation headquartered in Singapore, has launched a 60-minute mortgage approval service for Singaporeans using FICO® Origination Manager. The solution is an industry first digital end-to-end loan application and acceptance journey which leverages automation and straight-through processing on mortgages which are originated online.

More information: https://www.fico.com/en/products/fico-origination-manager

“OCBC has a reputation for innovation,” said Dinesh Suresh, head of digital strategy, consumer secured lending at OCBC Bank. “For example, it was the first bank in Singapore to allow customers to instantly open and use a new bank account. We wanted to build on this by offering ‘instant mortgages’ as the next industry-first. Central to this was a decisioning system that could draw all the threads of the loan application together and weave it into the fabric of an online ‘self-service’ application channel.”

Prior to the implementation, the status quo was that all new home loan applications were manually keyed into the bank’s mortgage origination system called CLOUDS (Consumer Lending Origination Uber Decisioning System). Once approved, a letter of offer was generated for the customer’s signature. All of which was time-consuming for the customer and the process created friction for OCBC.

OCBC worked with FICO to streamline this mortgage application process, which required the submission of various documents to provide evidence of employment, income, financial assets, property details and repayment records. To achieve this, the team had to integrate MyInfo, the Singapore e-government’s one-stop data platform for citizens, run its own proprietary eKYC (Electronic Know Your Customer) over applications, automate policy decisions and allow for a manual review by bank staff.

The integration of MyInfo into the process meant that customer details were pre-populated and mapped to the correct fields in CLOUDS. It also meant OCBC was not required to obtain physical documents to verify a customer’s identity or to separately obtain a photograph. eKYC is essentially performed at this point, however, OCBC also integrated its own proprietary real-time digital KYC to ensure total compliance with its own system and standards.

Decisions about loan size are calculated by looking at numerous factors, such as the regulatory total debt servicing ratio (TDSR) and loan to value ratio (LTV). Income is verified against tax returns lodged with Singapore’s Tax Authority (IRAS), as the returns are also integrated into MyInfo and property valuations are determined using API links to third-party valuers.

Once all the calculations are made and a decision proposed, FICO’s solution passes the application to a direct acquisition officer to review and complete the case. This is to ensure data, valuations and pricing all look in order before a PDF letter of offer is sent for the customer’s digital acceptance.

OCBC’s instant mortgage offering has been very successful in Singapore, and particularly timely.  It was fully deployed in May 2020 in the middle of the country’s Covid-19 Circuit Breaker period whereby face-to-face meetings could not take place. During the lock-down period, $700m loans were signed-up, enabling the Bank to maintain strong business momentum.  In 2020, 30% of loans were signed-up through this platform.

“Anyone who has ever had to apply for a mortgage knows that it is something you hope to do only a few times in your life,” said Nikhil Behl chief marketing officer at FICO.  “Transforming this experience into something faster and simpler shows that OCBC identified an opportunity to change the customer journey for the better.”

For its achievements, OCBC won a 2021 FICO® Decisions Award for customer onboarding & management.

“The modern consumer gravitates towards companies that can make doing business as conveniently as possible,” said Tomas Klinger, decision science and data director at Home Credit China and one of the FICO Decisions Awards judges. “You don’t see these types of banking innovations that often for mortgages as it requires more data collection and very accurate analysis. Creating a 60-minute mortgage application service is exactly the type of offering that gets consumers recommending a bank to their social circle. The judges were impressed with the innovation and commitment of OCBC to modernizing its business.”

About OCBC
OCBC Bank is the longest established Singapore bank, formed in 1932 from the merger of three local banks, the oldest of which was founded in 1912. It is now the second largest financial services group in Southeast Asia by assets and one of the world’s most highly rated banks, with an Aa1 rating from Moody’s. Recognized for its financial strength and stability, OCBC Bank is consistently ranked among the World’s Top 50 Safest Banks by Global Finance and has been named Best Managed Bank in Singapore by The Asian Banker.

OCBC Bank and its subsidiaries offer a broad array of commercial banking, specialist financial and wealth management services, ranging from consumer, corporate, investment, private and transaction banking to treasury, insurance, asset management and stockbroking services.

OCBC Bank’s key markets are Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Greater China. It has more than 480 branches and representative offices in 19 countries and regions. These include over 230 branches and offices in Indonesia under subsidiary Bank OCBC NISP, and over 70 branches and offices in Mainland China, Hong Kong SAR and Macau SAR under OCBC Wing Hang.

OCBC Bank’s private banking services are provided by its wholly-owned subsidiary Bank of Singapore, which operates on a unique open- architecture product platform to source for the best-in-class products to meet its clients’ goals.

OCBC Bank's insurance subsidiary, Great Eastern Holdings, is the oldest and most established life insurance group in Singapore and Malaysia. Its asset management subsidiary, Lion Global Investors, is one of the largest private sector asset management companies in Southeast Asia.

For more information, please visit www.ocbc.com

About the FICO® Decisions Awards
The FICO Decisions Awards recognize organizations that are achieving remarkable success using FICO solutions. A panel of independent judges with deep industry expertise evaluates nominations based upon measurable improvement in key metrics; demonstrated use of best practices; project scale, depth and breadth; and innovative uses of technology. The 2021 judges are:

  • Prasanna Dhoré, Chief Data & Analytics and Innovation Officer, Equifax
  • David Dittmann, vice president, Data & Analytics, P&G (2019 winner)
  • René Javier Guzmán, market & liquidity risks director at Banreservas (2019 winner)
  • Tomas Klinger, decision science and data director at Home Credit (2019 winner)
  • Marcel Le Gouais, managing editor at Credit Strategy
  • Tiffani Montez, banking analyst at Aite
  • Lisa Morgan, journalist & analyst at InformationWeek
  • Ignazio Provinzano, head of risk operations at Swisscard (2019 winner)

The winners of the FICO Decisions Awards will be spotlighted at and win tickets to FICO® World 2021, the Decisions Conference, November 2021 in Orlando, Florida.

About FICO
FICO (NYSE: FICO) powers decisions that help people and businesses around the world prosper. Founded in 1956 and based in Silicon Valley, the company is a pioneer in the use of predictive analytics and data science to improve operational decisions. FICO holds more than 195 US and foreign patents on technologies that increase profitability, customer satisfaction and growth for businesses in financial services, manufacturing, telecommunications, health care, retail and many other industries. Using FICO solutions, businesses in more than 120 countries do everything from protecting 2.6 billion payment cards from fraud, to helping people get credit, to ensuring that millions of airplanes and rental cars are in the right place at the right time.

Learn more at www.fico.com.

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