Climb Credit is the first point-of-sale education finance company to partner directly with schools offering skills-based programs and align financial incentives to students (borrowers). Their initial loan application process was highly manual and required a print-sign-scan-fax workflow. In some cases, a cosigner was required for loan approval meaning two separate parties would need to sign the same PDF.
Furthermore, the forms that Climb Credit offered to student borrowers were somewhat customizable depending on the type of loan being offered. This meant that student data was locked in PDFs, and if loan conditions changed down the road, student borrowers would have to repeat entire workflows.
Revenue growth in 2017
The most important thing for Climb Credit as they chose a solution was an easy integration into their technology environment and relatively low development effort.
With the HelloSign API “We were easily able to test out what the e-sign solution would look like. It took less than one day of development time, which is A+ in my book.” Arjun Kannan, CTO
HelloSign stood out from competitors with its mobile-friendly approach, which can much more easily scale to other form factors.They looked at DocuSign, but chose HelloSign because, in addition to being easy, “HelloSign was much more growth-friendly than DocuSign and more willing to help us out as we were doing this for the first time. They understood our pricing needs and future growth potential, and built us a plan that grew as we did. It was extremely startup friendly,” says Arjun."
Before integrating the HelloSign API into their digital transaction management process, it used to take, on average, nine days to finalize an approved loan. “Today, it takes us about two days, including all communication between our representatives and the student. HelloSign has contributed significantly to making our loan finalization process three times faster,” says Arjun.
They’ve also seen a big reduction in student churn. “A student applies to Climb Credit and their loan term is delivered via eSign as soon as they are approved. More than 90% of our students get a decision instantly, meaning those documents can be signed immediately. This is a significant factor in them choosing our experience,” says Arjun.
The new streamlined loan application workflow enabled Climb Credit to increase the types of loan products they offer because they can customize the documentation for new products without having to go through an entirely new documentation process every time.
Climb Credit partners with schools that offer the resources and skills required for jobs with strong earning potential in today’s economy. Their vision is to improve the alignment of school motivations with student career and salary goals to ensure that their students see a life-changing impact from their education.
Headquarters: New York, NY
Number of Partner Schools: 70+
Median Salary increase for Climb students: 66.7%
Ultimately this has helped them grow the business more efficiently, increasing their revenue by 70% in 2017. “There are a number of factors that contribute to increasing the revenue, but certainly the fact that we can take a process that typically takes days and make that a process that takes minutes is a big factor,” says Arjun.
The integration of the HelloSign API has transformed their student portal process. Now, student borrowers simply click on a button in the portal to access and sign all loan documents. “Because we can do automatic verification on all form fields, the only thing that is left for us to verify internally is the signature, and then we're ready to go,” says Arjun.
With a typical student success representative working with dozens of loans at any given time, automated verification dramatically reduces time spent verifying each loan, increasing operational efficiency. “The ability to automate our borrowers' documentation workflow means that the verification workflow for us internally also becomes much simpler,” says Arjun.
By the end of 2017, Climb Credit’s funding pool created 50 million USD in net annual salary for students. Going forward “we want to be the number one lender for skills-based schools and help students get the education that they need. We are on-track to grow 70% this year and double next year. A lot of that is down to us being able to create efficiencies in our student loan application process, which then lets us pursue growth opportunities.” - Arjun Kannan, CTO
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