Kleberg Bank Strengthens Customer Relationships with Modern Agreements

Kleberg Bank has served South Texas for more than a century. Since 1905, the bank has established itself as part of the community through a commitment to building long-term relationships with consumers and small businesses. As part of that commitment, Kleberg looks for ways to improve the customer experience and better understand customer needs.

 One of the biggest opportunities identified by Kleberg Bank was the use of customer-centric technology to streamline the account opening process. By implementing digital forms and signatures, Kleberg saw a chance to reduce the manual time and effort to open a new account, lighten the burden of internal processes and minimize the risk of errors.

Digitizing the account opening process with eSignature

The existing new account opening platform involved wet ink signatures and paper processes. If a new customer registered for an account at a physical location, data had to be collected, forms printed and the signer’s identity validated with a form of identification. The process took around 30 minutes on average. Even with electronic enrollment, customers had to print a form, sign it and send it to a bank location via postal mail or an email attachment. 

Kleberg Bank’s internal process involved shuffling stacks of paper back and forth between locations before it ultimately arrived at a central hub, where the information could be entered in the bank’s system. This workflow was inefficient, time-intensive and error-prone. The bank knew it needed electronic signature technology to simplify the process.

Kleberg’s solution was to integrate Docusign eSignature natively into its custom-built deposit acquisition technology. This setup offered customers an account opening process with a unified look and feel with the benefits of a validated electronic signature to replace the pains of a wet ink signature. It also allowed internal teams to transfer documents in a much simpler way without sacrificing compliance or adding new risk. “We were able to take a process that was fairly cumbersome, very paper driven, and convert it to a process that takes just a couple of minutes,” Kleberg Bank’s chief experience officer Brad Womack said.

Without the pressure of managing multiple documents at once and maintaining compliance through an ambiguous process, Kleberg bankers can now leverage the time savings to spark conversations with customers, get to know them personally and learn more about their financial needs.

“The Docusign integration allows team members to really focus on the relationship and the customer, rather than on the system,” CIO Christopher Medrano said. “It has allowed us to really shift the conversation to the customer and not be so distracted by data entry.”

Efficient ID verification for SBA loans

Amid the uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the shelter-in-place orders, Kleberg shifted its focus to helping small business customers. The primary means of helping these businesses survive was processing the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans efficiently to accelerate the delivery of funds. The loans could be signed via eSignature, but there was another hurdle to clear before the submissions were complete: identity verification.

To manage this stage in the PPP application process, Kleberg used Docusign ID Verification. These loans had to be processed quickly in order to get approved, so building a streamlined application workflow was the only way to ensure that funds would get into the hands of the small businesses in the communities Kleberg Bank serves. The results of the new technology were overwhelmingly positive. Using eSignature and ID Verification, Kleberg funded over 380 PPP deals, with an estimated 90% of customers being able to successfully verify their identity in the first envelope opening. 

Even for the small percentage of customers who didn’t verify their identity immediately, the new workflows made it easy for them to be quickly assisted. New documentation types could be easily added and customers verified in just hours. From a customer perspective, implementation of the new tools was universally positive with high rates of adoption and improved ease of use.

New opportunities for agreement improvements

With the bank’s current success with Docusign eSignature and ID Verification, Kleberg is planning to further extend the use of modern agreement technology. The bank has now integrated eSignature into its mortgage platform and is planning to expand to other consumer banking processes. Kleberg Bank has plans to test out eNotary functionality later in the year.

The goal is to add more consistency to cross-functional processes, gradually expanding services to in-branch customers. It’s also an opportunity to extend Kleberg services to new customers who can’t make regular visits to a physical branch. 

 “As we continue to evolve, we would love to move completely away from paper documents and shift exclusively to either electronic in-person signatures or digitally over an eSignature envelope,” Womack said. 

Moving forward, Kleberg’s strategy is to continually analyze risk tolerance across different business lines and make updates starting with the lowest risk workflows. As employees and customers continue to use streamlined processes powered by Docusign technology, Kleberg will build on that momentum to accelerate wider adoption.

See how your organization can simplify workflows and increase customer satisfaction; learn how to Digitize Account Opening and Onboarding with Docusign.