First American Title Company

Leading provider of title insurance and settlement services to the real estate and mortgage industries selects Stamps.com Enterprise as its postage management solution to reduce costs and gain greater control and visibility into postage spend.

“Stamps.com Enterprise has proven to be the most efficient postage solution I have experienced. It is user-friendly and facilitates employee accountability.” – Ginny Haddy, IT Operations Manager, First American Title

Customer

First American Title Company provides financial services through its Title Insurance and Services segment and its Specialty Insurance segment. The First American Family of Companies’ core business lines include title insurance and closing/settlement services and property data and automated title plant records and images. First American also serves homebuyers and sellers, real estate professionals, loan originators and servicers, commercial property professionals, homebuilders and others involved in residential and commercial property transactions with products and services specific to their needs.

With experience dating back to 1889, First American offers its services through direct operations and a network of qualified agents across the United States as well as internationally. First American operates more than 800 offices in its entire network.

Challenge

In early 2008, First American Title Company was faced with a need to reduce its costs and improve overall business efficiency. As part of this companywide mandate, First American Title conducted a complete assessment of its business operations in order to identify areas that could benefit from restructuring that would ultimately lower operational costs across the board. As part of this effort, the IT Facilities Department took a closer look at the company’s postage solution.

For many decades, First American Title had used postage meters and courier services for their postage needs. However, a cost analysis of this process showed that there could be huge cost savings in migrating to an online postage solution that would no longer require long-term and expensive equipment leases. That said, many offices were already locked into long-term agreements so First American Title was unable to quickly make a change in postage solutions. After a complete review of their practices, First American Title determined that its core challenge was related to the costs involved with postage meter leases. Additionally, First American Title also identified that part of this challenge was the inability to properly allocate costs to its offices since they had no centralized view of postage spend and overall activity.

Solution

After reviewing various potential solutions, First American Title’s Manager of IT Facilities-Chris Schaetzle chose Stamps.com Enterprise as its postage solutions provider. Since it was already determined that postage meters were costly and management needed greater visibility into postage spend, First American Title decided to start transitioning their regional and local offices as the equipment leases reached their respective terms. In fact, a recommendation was made from the corporate office to start moving away from postage meters as quickly as possible to drastically reduce the company’s ongoing liability.

In the past 2 years, First American Title has transitioned over 110 offices to the Stamps.com Enterprise postage solution. There are still several hundred offices that are planning to migrate over to the Stamps.com Enterprise platform. The feedback has been very positive for this new postage solution and all district managers have supported the transition to online postage for their offices. First American Title now has the ability not only to reduce its costs permanently, but also be able to have greater visibility into the company’s overall postage spend with the help of Stamps.com Enterprise’s reporting tools. According to First American Title’s management, here are some of the top reasons why the Stamps.com Enterprise solution was selected:

  • Lower costs versus postage meters
  • Increased control and visibility into postage spend
  • Powerful reporting tools
  • Ease of use
  • Increased productivity

Results

Cost Savings

First American Title estimates that their cost savings are in the range of several thousand dollars per month and this figure will continue to grow since there are several hundred more offices planning to transition over the next few months and years. Stamps.com Enterprise enables First American Title offices to use existing computers as opposed to paying high rental fees for postage meters. Additionally, postage meters have auxiliary costs such as expensive ink refills and hidden fees that are not listed on the initial agreements. With Stamps.com Enterprise, all that is needed is a PC and printer. Plus, Stamps.com Enterprise service includes a dedicated team of representatives who are available for account management and technical support at no additional cost.

Control and Visibility

It was always very difficult for First American Title to keep track of the various offices’ postage meter lease details and postage spend since there was no centralized way to view this activity. This ultimately resulted in lots of time spent pulling information from individual offices and it also proved to be rather difficult to rely on the accuracy of the information provided by each office’s administrator. The Stamps.com Enterprise solution simplifies this process and allows one designated person to view activity for all offices from one centralized dashboard. This process represents a massive improvement of business practices and it allows for greater control and visibility into First American Title’s overall postage spend.

Ease of Use

An important consideration for First American Title was to find a solution that is robust enough for their everyday mailing and reporting needs, but also one that is easy to use and can be implemented quickly. Because Stamps.com Enterprise is a software-based application, it is easy to install and easy to use. One of the main reasons why Stamps.com is the leading PC Postage provider with over 400,000 members is that the software has been built with the end-user in mind. Although the interface is intuitive, Stamps.com provides strong support options—a dedicated team, online support, and instructional webinars on how to use the software. First American Title employees have been able to quickly ramp up and learn how to best use Stamps.com Enterprise.

Increased Productivity

Users of Stamps.com’s Enterprise software at First American Title offices have also experienced an upswing in productivity. After learning how to best use the software for their mailing needs, users have seen that creating postage and shipping labels, ordering postage supplies, and generating timely reports are no longer tasks that take valuable time away from their daily tasks. Stamps.com Enterprise has enabled users to incorporate these tasks and other mailing needs into their normal daily workflow–since all they need are a PC and printer to manage their mailings. In fact, Ginny Haddy, a Title IT Operations Manager with First American’s Commercial Services Division, stated that based on her experience Stamps.com Enterprise has proven to be the most efficient and user-friendly postage solution.