Colleagues, Fellow Professionals and Friends,

" I sure hope this all works out for everyone" - Those nine words from a banker in Alabama began one of the greatest opportunities to present itself to American Bank Systems - the opportunity to acquire complete ownership of a loan and deposit platform system.
The banker who wrote those words was describing her hope that ABS would find a way to acquire CoPilot - the loan and deposit system that she loved and had been using for some time. She described her enthusiasm about CoPilot with the word "Usability". This word can mean different things to different people, but the banker knew exactly what she meant as she quoted a definition given by Whitney Quesenbery in her blogpost titled,  What Does Usability Mean: Looking Beyond "Ease of Use". The Alabama banker said that CoPilor perfectly fit this definition of usability:

* Usability means thinking about how and why people use a product. Good technical writing, like good interaction design, focuses on user's goals. The first step in creating a usable product is understanding those goals in the context of the user's environment, task or work flow, and letting these needs inform the design.
* Usability means evaluation. Usability relies on user-feedback through evaluation rather than simply trusting the experience and expertise of the designer. Unlike conventional software acceptance testing, usability evaluation involves watching real people use a product (or prototype), and using what is learned to improve the product.
* Usability means more than just "ease of use". The 5 E's - efficient, effective, engaging, error tolerant and easy to learn - describe the multi-faceted characteristics of usability. Interfaces are evaluated against the combination of these characteristics which best describe the user's requirements for success and satisfaction.
* Usability means user-centered design. Users are satisfied when an interface is user-centered - when their goals, mental models, tasks and requirements are all met. The combination of analysis, design and evaluation are all approached starting from the user's point of view creates usable products.
[Source: W. Quesenbery, What Does Usability Mean: Looking Beyond "Ease of Use"]
Our friend in Alabama had only one other wish, just one - "I wish CoPilot had its own forms."
And so, we began to think about the opportunity - the opportunity to acquire CoPilot and give it its own forms, ABS Forms. We performed our due diligence and came to the same conclusion the banker had about CoPilot's Usability.
CoPilot stands in the tradition of ABS' other systems
- designed by bankers for bankers.
Every word of the banker proved true. Best of all, it  all worked out for everyone ! A new opportunity has brought a new day at ABS. You'll read the rest of the CoPilot story in the Chairman's Letter below.
THEY do me wrong who say I come no more
When once I knock and fail to find you in;
For every day I stand outside your door,
And bid you wake and rise to fight and win.
-- from
Opportunity by W. Malone

I hope this edition of 
BankLine  has many items of interest for you. 


James W. Bruce, III
CEO and General Counsel, American Bank Systems SpotlightMarch

It's All About Service
Late last year we got a call from a banker in Alabama telling us about a document preparation platform system called CoPilot.  She said something like:  " We have used this system for years and the company has decided to 'close its doors'. You are in the documentation business. You should acquire this system!" And, that started our investigation and negotiations to acquire CoPilot and its client base.
In my fifty years of service in the banking industry - first as a banker for 25 years and then as a servant of bankers for the last 25 years - I have observed how the industry has changed and, more importantly, how regulatory requirements have become increasingly demanding of expertise and oversight. What has not changed is the core of excellent banking performance - the documentation of loans/deposits and the management of that documentation as well as the collateral protecting the bank.
Since I acquired the majority interest in American Bank Systems and focused our strategic attention on developing automated systems for managing a financial institution's loan and deposit areas, I have wanted to own a loan/deposit documentation system which utilized our banking forms. Our forms have been a significant proprietary asset of American Bank Systems since its inception over 45 years ago. These forms have been developed over the years by bankers,  for bankers  rather than by lawyers for bankers.  They are forms that have all the required legal underpinning (and approval of legal counsel) but are designed to manage the lending requirements, which are clearly born of good loan management rather than having a legalistic focus.  Clear. Simple. Focused. Superior These words characterize the forms which our clients know and love.
So, in March, 2016, we completed the acquisition of the CoPilot software and clients utilizing this system in eleven states from Digital Banking Solutions, Inc. of Georgia. We formed a new company, Digital Banking Solutions LLC of Oklahoma, to own the system and the existing clients and began the process of revitalizing the effort with a focus on expanding the qualification of American Bank Systems forms for the current client states and conforming the ABS forms which have already been approved for loans and deposits in the seven states which American Bank Systems has historically operated a loan/deposit documentation system (Oklahoma, Texas, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Colorado and New Mexico). Our long-term goal:  to have a 50 state documentation system focused on providing a " simple, solid, and superior" loan/deposit platform system complete with electronic filing and tracking of documentation in a seamless platform supported by one company - American Bank Systems.
Digital Banking Solutions, LLC, is an independent company but is linked to American Bank Systems through overlapping family ownership, and this family-owned enterprise is focused on providing the best possible, easy to use, loan and deposit software which supports community banking and compliance with the regulatory guidelines and requirements. We trust that CoPilot will become your platform system in combination with ABS' BankManager®. I hope you will give us a call today to see how CoPilot can serve you!

James W. Bruce, Jr.   

First CoPilot Loans and Deposits "Roadshow"

Tom Ryan, Executive Vice President of Sales,  Marketing and Business Alliances

Last month, we held our first "CoPilot Roadshow" here in our Oklahoma City office. Ten banks were represented at the show and saw how CoPilot Loans works. We demonstrated three loan types: a consumer car loan to show the system's simplicity, a consumer real estate loan to show the system's compliance sophistication, and a commercial loan to show the system's flexibility.

After enjoying a catered buffet lunch, we showed the bankers CoPilot Deposits and then gave them hands-on access to the system.

The bankers responded with positive feedback, compliments, and interest in learning more about CoPilot and how they may bring the system "in-house." We plan to do more Roadshows in Oklahoma and the surrounding states over the next few months. Contact us to see when we will be in your area or if you would like one of our team members to contact you about a demo. 

  System Highlights

Easy to install and use    

Minimal hardware requirements

Automated Updates

Process Manager permits managing the loan/deposit documentation process

eSignature capability

Unified Screen Layout for Loans/Deposits makes training and usage simpler

Designed to meet future needs

An ABS associate for the past five years, Eric's past experience in real estate helps give him insights into identifying target markets. Eric works primarily with the BankManager® Elite system. The freedom to create solutions and quality systems is what Eric enjoys about ABS. And he is putting those skills to use, developing a system that he feels will be his greatest industry achievement.  

An Enid native, Eric attended college at Oklahoma State, where he studied civil engineering. Eric and his wife of 13 years have two rescue German Shepherds, named  Maximus Claudius and Anja.

Check out these recent posts to our Compliance Blog by our very own team of compliance specialists.
Resolving More Compliance Conundrums
By Gina Ellis
Posted July 12, 2016

In our blog, Compliance Conundrums, January 18, 2016, we reported regulations had not been issued in support an exemption of the annual privacy notice requirements. However, on Friday, July 1, 2016, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) finally issued a proposed amendment to Regulation P, which will conform the privacy regulations to legislation passed by Congress in December 2015.
While the law was effective as of the date signed, some institutions may have decided to wait until the regulation was amended before eliminating the annual mailing. This proposal has a 30 day comment period, but it is expected that the final rule will be effective soon. So if you did decide to continue mailing annual privacy notices, this may finally be the last year to do so... View Article

What the Fed's New Supervisory Guidance Means for Risk Management
By Elva Coffey-Sears
Posted June 20, 2016

On June 8, 2016 the Federal Reserve issued an update to its Supervisory Guidance for assessing risk management at institutions with less than $50 billion in assets. The guidance (SR 16-11) re-affirms the Federal Reserve Boards's "long-standing supervisory approach that emphasizes the importance of prudent risk management" but includes updates to core... View Article

TRID Integrated Disclosure Audits Most Common Problems
By Gina Ellis
Posted June 17, 2016

As we are performing our initial audits of the new integrated disclosures, we are noticing some common problems, particularly with construction transactions.
When disclosing the information for an interest only loan with a balloon payment, the Loan Estimate and Closing Disclosure should not include an Adjustable Payments (AP) Table... View Article


Need help preparing your TRID loans? ABS offers a loan documentation preparation service using ABS Forms and the CoPilot Loan system. We are available to help with all of your TRID loans or as a backup if your regular loan processor is unavailable due to illness or vacation. Call for more information: 405-607-7000. Document preparation services currently offered in Oklahoma, but we plan to expand the service for banks in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Texas later this year, and additional states in 2017.

Linking Imaged Documents Across all Relationships in BankManager® Elite

Wouldn't it be convenient to open up your Customer's imaged documents and see the Guarantor's Financials right there?

Well, BankManager® Elite makes this possible! Any document can be selected to be linked across all relationships.
For example, if customer Rita Book is a guarantor on a loan for customer Brock Lee, and Rita Book's financials are indexed to her file (Document Tree), a copy of her financials will also automatically be indexed in Brock Lee's file (Document Tree), eliminating the need to go back and forth between two different files.

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