Citi modernizes forbearance process to work smarter with increased controls
50% reduction in manual work for forbearance enrollment
Time to complete forbearance enrollment reduced from 24 hours to under three seconds
Centralized data repository with real-time reporting
“Pega's automation capabilities enable us to scale our forbearance operations effectively. As the volume of forbearance requests fluctuates, we can easily adjust our resources and processes to handle increased demand without compromising efficiency.”
The Business Issue
Founded in 1812, Citi is a global leader in wealth management and personal banking operating across nearly 160 countries. With more than 200 years’ experience in lending, the bank knew that forbearance was a critical service for customers faced with financial hardship.
But Citi also recognized that its existing forbearance system was fragmented and lacked effective business process design to manage interdependencies between subprocesses. This led to inefficiencies and disjointed workflows. Changes made in one process often had unintended consequences for other interconnected processes.
Moreover, the existing infrastructure and systems were outdated, hindering the department's ability to proactively respond to customer needs and adapt to evolving market dynamics. And the use of batch processing resulted in suboptimal customer experiences and slower processing times, affecting operational efficiency.
Recognizing the need to transform, Citi embarked on a journey to enhance its forbearance process, driven by the objectives of achieving operational excellence, delivering seamless omni-channel experiences, enhancing risk reporting, expediting time to market, and strengthening controls and analytics for data governance.
Citi turned to its longstanding partnership with Pega – a 40-year collaboration. Citi has relied on Pega to streamline and automate its personal banking and institutional client services.
The bank started with Citi’s Branded and Retail Services credit cards, which dealt with a significant volume of cases annually, stemming from personal life events, economic fluctuations, and natural disasters. To effectively manage forbearance and deferment offerings, Citi integrated its existing internal applications with Pega Case Management.
The bank undertook a solution architecture revamp and divided the system into three core areas: eligibility, enrollment, and lifecycle management. Microservices were employed to facilitate eligibility checks, enrollment requests, and real-time updates across Citi's applications and product processors. By harnessing Pega's case management capabilities, Citi achieved better visibility, controls, and coordination across its systems.
The Partner Impact
Citi partnered with TCS alongside Pega to facilitate the implementation. They adopted a collaborative approach, engaging a combination of onshore and offshore Pega resources; Citi's business, risk, and technology teams; and the TCS team. Working in a Scrum model, the teams managed more than 22 sprints, handled over 1,600 user stories, and executed the project with strong leadership alignment, a unified vision, and shared objectives.
The delivery model proved successful, with the first production release occurring on time and on budget. Rigorous testing also ensured a smooth go-live. Throughout the journey, Citi's teams demonstrated hyper-focus on the project vision, executing releases by program types and lines of business. This approach allowed for efficient monitoring and issue resolution, leading to continuous improvement.
With the Pega Platform™ and Pega Case Management, Citi has achieved:
- 50% reduction in manual work for enrollment
- Reduced time for new enrollments from 24 hours to under three seconds
- Omni-channel experiences for agents and customers
- Enhanced risk reporting, controls, and analytics
- Shortened time to market
- Improved data governance and management
- Real-time activity dashboards
- Centralized data repository
- Real-time case view and audit trail
- Ability to flex operations to changes in volumes
Citi is now shifting its focus toward automation, including automating controls, monitoring tasks, and implementing intelligent routing. Process mining and integration opportunities are expected to further streamline systems and drive greater efficiencies.