• February 27, 2008
  • By Marshall Lager, founder and managing principal, Third Idea Consulting; contributor, CRM magazine

Experian Opens Its Attribute Toolbox

With the subprime mortgage crisis still inflicting damage on the U.S. economy, the ability to assess credit worthiness is a top concern among lenders and financial services companies. In that light, Experian today introduced Experian Attribute Toolbox (ATB), a data intelligence and analytics package. Attribute Toolbox allows institutions to connect to multiple data sources, and to build and manage the attributes that are required to make informed decisions throughout the customer lifecycle, according to the company. Lenders use attributes -- variables that summarize raw data, such as the number of delinquent accounts -- as the basic component in the process of making smarter decisions about offering loans or issuing credit. Attributes can be customized to reflect specific customer behaviors to drive better business decisions. ATB is intended to allow clients to manage attributes with common tools across the enterprise and also provides access to a library of more than 400 standard aggregated attributes, according to Experian. Experian appears to be making ease-of-integration a major selling point with this new toolkit. Platform-independent and built on a services-based architecture (SOA), ATB can be installed at the client site or hosted by Experian. Available standalone, ATB can also be combined with other Experian Decision Analytics products such as the Strategy Management business-rules engine or Transact SM application processing software. ATB includes prebuilt interfaces to credit and non-credit data sources, allowing analysts to manage, create, and validate attributes for deployment in real-time or offline systems. "In the last few years, lenders have made great strides in improving the quality as well as availability of information about their customers," said Christine Pratt, research director for consumer banking and credit at Financial Insights, in a statement. "The next step for many lenders is deployment of analytics that will enable them to manage and grow what is already a $14 trillion retail-loan portfolio. Solutions like Experian's Attribute Toolbox that address one of the industry's key challenges -- to better manage data which in turn improves the speed and quality of decisions -- positions lenders to compete effectively for the customer's business and for overall market share."

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