Kyle Hess.

Hi there! I'm a software product manager with experience in scaling product teams in fintech and real estate.

I've spent most of my life in Columbia, Missouri and currently live in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Check out what I've been working on, give me a yell, or find me below.

January 2020, Veterans United Home Loans ✨

Lead Autodialer

We're building a system that will help connect our team of employees with customers who have submitted leads as efficiently as possible.

Our tool will orchestrate the API calls necessary to connect our lead information (a combination of Microsoft Dynamics CRM and a proprietary lead scoring model) to our phone system, Cisco PCCE 12+.

June 2019

Moved to Ann Arbor, MI

May 2019, Realty Search Solutions ➡️

Real Estate CRM

Our first project working with the external development teams is building a B2B CRM which streamlines the communication between the lender and the real estate agent.

We're building the app to support Veterans United Realty and Alliance Realty Network, who are innovating on the business relationship between lenders and agents, by facilitating the connection between specialists and borrowers.

The App (AgentDash) is a PWA built using Angular. I helped craft the UX, and am setting the vision as a Product Manager for the ~20 person development team.

April 2019, Mortgage Research Center ➡️

External Development

To support the gap between development supply and demand, I'm working to build out our strategy to use remote and outsourced development.

My role has included company research, contract negotiations, project selection, and product ownership. I'm also trying to standardize our process around incorporating third-party teams into our flow, which includes helping to define our technical and product standards.

June 2018, Veterans United Home Loans 🚧

Mortgage Automation

Veterans United, like the rest of the financial service industry, is heavily investing in technology to make their products less expensive and easier than ever before. Our goals here are ambitious; we want to automate as much of the mortgage as possible.

There is quite a bit of competition, but we've got a great balance of third-party integrations and home-grown innovations that are making a significant impact in the number of employee hours it takes to fully close a loan.

While I'm spending most of my time working on other business verticals, mortgage automation is near and dear to my heart. My contributions have included rebuilding our internal task system to support new integrations, implementing Optical Character Recognition (OCR) to help automate the check-in of documents, and coordinating efforts as a product manager across our customer, sales, and operations-focused development teams.

August 2018, True/False Film Fest ✅

Non-Profit Partnership Trade

As the first person in a newly crafted role, I worked to engage and grow the businesses and restaurants that support the "the most important documentary festival in America" through in-kind trade.

In one year, I worked with nearly 70 sponsors (40% of whom were first-timers to the fest) and contracted over $150k in trade.

We made significant steps forward in organization and technology (thanks, Airtable and Coda!), and set the festival up for continued growth in non-cash sponsorship.

November 2017, Veterans United Home Loans ✅

Enterprise Task Management

As the Product Manager for two development teams, we completely rebuilt our company's internal task management strategy. I designed the UX (using Sketch, then Figma), worked with product owners to define the features and scope, and led the rollout to our 1,000+ operations and sales employees.

Today, our task management system is at the center of the "Automated Digital Mortgage" projects for the nation's largest VA home loan lender.

March 2017, True/False Film Fest ✅

Festival Event Management

A huge part of the success of True/False Film Fest is their commitment to the festival as an event. I worked on a team of year-round employees that throws roughly 20 parties over the festival's four days.

I coordinated teams of volunteers and worked with local restaurants and vendors to ensure that our 10,000+ guests had a great time.

December 2016

Joined True/False Film Fest

October 2016, Veterans United Home Loans ✅

Enterprise Vendor Services

After time in training and business analytics, this was my official move into product management. Still focusing on operations employees, we needed to rebuild a few systems to better support the expected company growth.

Working with a team of five developers, we built a state-of-the-art I/O integration with Encompass that was able to immediately handle a 10x increase in volume. It was also significantly more stable, and was my first experience with a competing consumer pattern which allowed us to scale to meet the business' needs.

May 2015, Veterans United Home Loans ✅

Operations Business Analytics

I had the opportunity to help found an integrated business analytics team which focused on Veterans United's ~800 operations employees. We covered processing, underwriting, closing, as well as the support of our sales teams.

Working directly with the Chief Operations Officer, we used data and analytics to restructure roles, build capacity and hiring models, build incentive programs, and better prepare our people operations for the company's growth in volume.

I got really good at SQL and Tableau, which are both tools I still use almost every day.

January 2014, Veterans United Home Loans ✅

Enterprise Software Transition

Our company was switching Loan Origination Systems; the backbone of how we close loans. To support it, a team of folks came together from departments all across the organization to facilitate the rollout. In just under a year, the team was able to integrate and customize Encompass by Ellie Mae and Microsoft Dynamics for our 1,500+ employees.

As one of the lead trainers, I built written training and user guides for all of the sales and operations roles at the company. I also lead the charge to rollout to employees across the country through both in-person training and digital conferences.

January 2013, Veterans United Home Loans ✅

Retail Production Training

To support a national network of retail loan officers, I led the creation of over 30 hours of digital training (eLearning), web conferences, and video interviews to highlight the best workflows and strategies for mortgage origination.

During my time, the retail team grew 55% in volume over two years, and closed over $1 billion in loan volume in 2014.

January 2013

Joined Veterans United