Lending Technical Lead

Location Durham
Contract Type Permanent
Hours Full time

We’re Atom

We’re an app-based bank, so we don’t have any branches on the high street. Traditional we are not. Even our ad campaigns are a little bit different.

  • Featured in London Stock Exchange’s 1,000 Companies to Inspire Britain 2019.
  • Ranked 12th in Business Cloud’s 100 FinTech disruptors list which looks at the UK’s most exciting financial technology companies.
  • Named in the Chronicle’s top 50 best places to work in the North East (listed in the top 20).

Want to join us?

Atom is a digital bank, on a journey to have a decision engine led, automation focused underwriting function across all types of lending. We’re there for Retail lending and on our way for Commercial. As a Lending Technical Lead you will work as part of the Lending Originations & Underwriting team and will ultimately be expected to ensure the technical capability of all members of the team, across all forms of business and retail lending (including but not limited to Commercial property investment, trading businesses, portfolio buy to let and residential mortgages). You’ll be a lending subject matter expert, driven by excellence and with a breadth and depth of experience across a range of industries, and are experienced in holding and operating a secured commercial lending mandate. You’ll be required to contribute to the development and maintenance of a high performing lending team driven by the ethos of “getting it right, first time”. You’ll support colleagues in reaching their own potential, through proactively delivering developmental feedback, sharing knowledge and providing training, coaching, technical consultancy and guidance on all aspects of lending risk management. One of your main goals will be to support delivery of a department of lending experts who are at least as capable as you, and at best exceed your own capability. You’ll have personal responsibility for reviewing and underwriting new lending applications, further advances and loan modifications in line with Atom lending criteria, procedures and controls, delivering balanced lending decisions in line with your mandated authority, either for cases from your own small portfolio, or as a higher mandate recommendation from other team members. You’ll be a strong communicator, able to interact effectively both face to face, and via a range of digital channels (e.g. phone, email, live chat) with a variety of stakeholders; from brokers, to customers, valuers, conveyancers and all levels of internal stakeholders to ensure that relationships are maximised . You’ll also be called on to provide technical advice and sign off for other lower mandate holding underwriters.
For this role it is essential that you are a commercial lending subject matter expert. At Atom, we’re here to change the future of banking for good so we’ll also depend on you to identify ways we can improve our processes, enhance automation (especially in decisioning) , maximise broker and customer experience, improve controls and increase output.

What will your ‘typical’ day look like…. (there’s no 2 days the same in Atom):

Technical Capability:-

  • Underwrite commercial property investment, trading business, buy to let (single and portfolio) and retail mortgage lending applications, further advances and loan modifications in line with Atom’s lending policy, ensuring the principles of conduct risk, TCF, responsible lending and all relevant regulatory principles (e.g. MCOB, MCD, KYC, KYB, AML) are observed, detailed affordability assessments are complete and the principles of credit assessment models (e.g. 5Cs, CAMPARI) are applied.
  • Operate within own personal lending mandate(s) and refer over mandate cases to appropriate mandate holders, or present to Credit Committee as required
  • Ensure that all correspondence, including identification, income documents, references and valuations, are in line with lending policy and provide sufficient evidence to satisfy KYC, KYB and AML requirements
  • Ensure that all applications are complete, with accurate data input to ensure automated decisioning and record keeping is correct. Full rationale for your lending decision must also documented on the lending system
  • Provide subject matter expertise to the lending team and wider business, for standard and complex queries, with a focus on knowledge share and collective growth
  • Whilst your won’t have any direct line management reports, as a key member of the originations and underwriting leadership team, you’ll drive the development of team members by coaching them across all technical elements of lending for all product types, including (but not limited to) the interpretation of financial statements and relevant financial analysis, and the assessment of non-financial data to develop a concise and analytically focused foundation for all credit decisions.
  • Work with key stakeholding areas, including but not limited to Business Development and Propositions teams, to manage and improve the quality of applications flowing into the lending pipeline
  • Package and refer cases outside of personal lending mandate (or support other team members in doing this) to appropriate mandate holders or present to Credit Committee as required
  • Represent the Underwriting Team at Credit Committee as required, offering residential mortgage and commercial lending oriented expertise; preparing & presenting papers as required.

Delivering quality:-

  • Manage own caseload, handle underwriting queries and resolve issues on individual cases ensuring effective and timely processing in line with the relevant lending policy, procedures and service level expectations.
  • Ensure personal KPIs are met (including decision quality, customer satisfaction, regulatory compliance and continuous improvement) and work with the team to support delivery of departmental team KPIs are also delivered
  • Act fairly, reasonably and with integrity in all dealings with customers, intermediaries, Valuers and related 3rd parties (including Valuers and conveyancers).
  • Communicate positively, proactively and effectively with customers, intermediaries and related 3rd parties to gather information to make appropriate decisions, explain the rationale behind lending decisions and ensure that productive working relationships are maintained.
  • Work effectively with colleagues from within the underwriting, risk, mortgages and other associated teams, ensuring that the working relationships improve credit quality and minimise decision appeals (getting it right first time).
  • Support and/or conduct regular supplier performance reviews in line with the Atom’s supplier governance framework.

Continually improving:-

  • Identify potential improvements to underwriting systems, policies, criteria and processes
  • Remain up to date with knowledge by reading professional publications, participating in professional organisations and maintaining personal networks
  • Management of own performance; and demonstrate proactivity in identifying and closing skills/ knowledge gaps
  • Maintain a thorough knowledge of all systems and procedures within the department to provide guidance and improve / update to ensure they are fit for purpose at all times.
  • Undertake ad hoc work as directed by line manager from time to time

All roles within Atom must adhere to the Conduct Rules as set out by the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

As part of our journey in building and running a bank we’ll encounter many risks along the way. In order to make sure the road doesn’t become too bumpy we expect everyone to make a conscious effort to proactively tackle and highlight any risks that we might face.

What do we need from you?

  • Considerable experience in (at least one of) commercial property investment or trading business lending
  • Experience in lending across multiple economic cycles
  • Experience in (at least one of) prime or near prime residential mortgage lending, buy to let
  • Must have held a commercial lending mandate with delegated authority to approve outside lending policy applications at a minimum level of £750k
  • Conversant in the application of credit assessment models including 5Cs
  •   Ability to evidence exposure to a range of different business sectors
  • Advanced ability to interpret financial accounts, business forecasts and business valuations
  • Awareness of a broad range of commercial credit bureau information
  • Ability to interpret property valuation reports to complete security assessments
  • Has a strong working knowledge of the legal considerations involved in taking various types of security, particularly commercial mortgages
  • Ability to present out of mandate applications to higher mandate levels up to an including Credit Committee
  • Able to demonstrate a strong and consistent track record of adherence to quality metrics in current role (e.g. QC benchmark met for a minimum of last 12m)
  • Has a detailed understanding of KYC, KYB, AML and compliance related rules and regulations, lending fraud and the measures/systems in place to avoid It
  • Holds a good understanding of the intermediated lending market
  • Holds a good Understanding of the principles of Responsible Lending, Conduct Risk, TCF and thematic reviews
  • Demonstrates Strong verbal and non-verbal communication skills
  • Is proactive, hardworking, flexible and able to work under own initiative
  • Confident, assertive and pragmatic approach with ability to exercise judgement and discretion where appropriate
  • Experience working in a dynamic, fast paced and customer centric environment

What would we ideally like from you?

  • Experience of pricing loan applications in line with bank approved models
  • Experience of commercial workout / pre litigation restructuring
  • Prior experience/knowledge of underwriting residential mortgages
  • Prior experience/knowledge of underwriting unsecured lending
  • Flexible and agile with ability to multitask
  • Higher education qualifications
  • Appropriate professional qualifications

What you’ll get from us:

  • Competitive Salary
  • Annual share option bonus – performance related
  • Incredibly generous company pension scheme (13% Atom contribution)
  • 25 days holiday + 8 statutory days – rising by half a day with every year in the company
  • Private medical insurance for you and immediate family
  • ‘All About Me’ fund – £200 per year to spend on learning a new skill (but it can’t be anything to do with your job). Recently people have done upholstery courses, had driving lessons and a rowing membership.
  • Health cash plan – expenses paid on optical/dental/other appointments/treatments
  • Life insurance – four times annual salary
  • Critical illness cover – 1 x lump sum annual salary
  • Cycle to Work Scheme
  • Continuous development – professional qualifications.

PLEASE NOTE: You must have the legal right to work in the UK to apply for this role. Atom bank are unable to support Visa Applications/Sponsorship.

Atom bank is an equal opportunities employer. We value you as an individual and therefore disregard race, religion/belief, gender, sexual orientation, maternity/pregnancy, age, gender reassignment, marriage/civil partnership and disability in any hiring decisions we make. Atom bank will always adhere to the Equality Act 2010.

How do I apply?

Email your application to

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The legal bit.

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