The commercial loan manager is a senior level member of the loan officer team and can make well over $130,000 per year according to the Certified Compensation Professionals HR report. The manager works his or her way up from a loan officer position, and thus acquires know-how and experience from working in the office under the supervision of a manager. The manager directs a team of loan officers and assumes responsibility for soliciting and all final transactions. He or she works closely with review managers and clerks to verify all information.
What Managers Are Required to Know
Managers are required to know how the loan office works, meaning they have personal experience working with clients (as a loan officer) and understand how to start the loan process, how to gather the needed information, and what is required to approve a loan within a specific limit. The manager can overstep the limit, unlike a loan officer, but remains responsible to the company for this action. He or she also knows what criteria is needed to pass a loan and what the auditors and business owners will need to see, in terms of profitability and risk management.
Because the loan manager has a history working with clients, he/she has empathy for their situation and can make better judgments that protect both potential borrowers and the company that ultimately risks the money. Managers delegate power to loan officers and other office personnel regarding credit searches, assembling an application, interviewing subjects, and researching collateral.
Training loan officers is not your particular call of duty, but it’s definitely within your job description to educate loan officers who are making mistakes or who are falling behind either because of over-qualifying or under-qualifying applications. You mostly work in an office, since loan officers do much of the legwork associated with contacting clients. The loan officers bring the details to you, expecting approval and any notes of criticism. The worst mistake for a manager to make would be to approve a loan without first verifying all the details—taking the word of a subordinate rather than making sure of the contract personally.
Education, Skills and Talents That Come in Handy
This immediately suggests that attention to detail is a prerequisite for this job. Also, the loan officer is expected to have a bachelor’s degree from a reputable school so a manager’s position favors the same, or perhaps even an MBA for the competitive edge. Study a related field such as finance, business, or economy. Build a resume of work experience and make sure to seek licensing through the proper channels. Federal licensing actually requires some hours of verified education, while states maintain the right to add additional hours for continuing education and work experience.
Innate abilities, as well as learned people skills, are also very helpful. Having the capacity to lead others, to inspire a team, and to use your creativity to influence others makes you management material. At the same time, a quality manager has a degree of flexibility and is approachable, not merely setting down rules, but opening his/her mind to ideas from loan officers, clerks, and reviewers.
It’s time to take your career seriously by training for a rewarding managerial career. Attending a trusted university is the first step.