As we continue to celebrate the accomplishments of the industry's top producing loan officers, we look ahead to a technology with the potential to not only supplant the traditional role of the loan officer, but to also radically reshape the entire mortgage manufacturing process.

It's hard to avoid hearing about robotic process automation in the mortgage industry this year, and for good reason. A number of lenders and servicers are already implementing RPA technology into their operations with great success.

But for all the hype, it's a technology that may seem unapproachable and confusing at first glance. Can RPA software really work across multiple systems, replicating the input and work of a human user, but much faster and with more accuracy and consistency? (Yes) Are physical, mechanical robots going to replace loan officers and underwriters? (No) Will it help lenders and servicers increase capacity and redeploy staff to more customer-centric tasks? (Yes)

The April cover story of NMN magazine — also appearing online as a series, read Part 1 and Part 2 here — explains all of the intricacies of robotic process automation and highlights a number of use-cases already in place throughout the mortgage industry. In addition, we explore many of the intended and unintended consequences that come with implementing this technology.

Speaking of new tech developments, I hope you're enjoying all of the new features and capabilities that we've included in the completely redesigned NMN website that launched last month.

As we continue to expand the content on the new site, you can expect to see even more tools, graphics and information to help you stay current on the latest industry developments and make better decisions in your business. We'd love your feedback, so please don't hesitate to let us know what you think. You can email me at austin.kilgore@sourcemedia.com