Chantel Chase, Zions Bancorp. | Most Powerful Women: Next

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Business banking operations division manager

Chantel Chase knows the value of efficiency, and her many ventures at Zions Bancorp. have depended on it.

When the company launched its business banking resurgence project two years ago, Chase was selected to join the senior leadership team, with responsibility for the application processing and loan closing functions.

The goal was to improve the customer experience across the enterprise — not just incrementally, but to "best in class," Chase said.

The project involved combining three satellite processing centers into one location at Zions' Business Banking Loan Center, streamlining the loan process, and eliminating confusing and often differing application instructions.

Chase, who played an instrumental role in the project's success, has been selected as one of the 15 women on our inaugural Next list. (An extension of our Most Powerful Women in Banking program, the list is meant to highlight high-achieving women in the leadership pipeline who are age 40 and under.)

"We created a simplified way for a relationship manager in the field to submit a loan to our center, so instead of them having to know all the ins and outs of our system, they just have a minimal piece that they do up front," Chase said. "So when it comes into us, my team will grab it."

The loan closers on her team prepare a list of items needed and then work with everyone involved — from appraisers to title companies — to collect each item within a target time frame.

"Chantel is an innovator and a collaborator. Her energy and can-do attitude, along with big-picture thinking, make her a force to be reckoned with." — Lori Chillingworth, director of business banking

Chase also played a role in the 2017 launch of a product Zions calls Business Access, which has reduced processing time on Small Business Administration loans from several weeks to as little as four hours and led to a dramatic increase in the number of applications.

"It's had a positive impact on the client, on the banker experience, and really changed the way that business banking is done at our company," Chase said. "It's definitely created a better experience."

Nominating executive: Lori Chillingworth, director of business banking

What she says: A laser focus on decreasing incomplete applications and improving delivery times is just one of Chase's many strengths, according to Chillingworth. "Chantel is an innovator and a collaborator. Her energy and 'can-do attitude,' along with big-picture thinking, make her a force to be reckoned with," Chillingworth wrote in nominating Chase for the Next list.

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