dtr began in 1962 with a single retail store in Auckland trading as Dominion TV Rentals. It has since grown into a substantial finance company with 23 stores nationwide. Through that national network, dtr provides personal loans of up to $20,000 and finance on a wide range of products including major appliances, furniture and phones. The product finance offer extends to both business and personal customers.
Entrepreneurial in its culture, dtr (Thorn) actively deploys technology both to optimise cost efficiency and improve customer experience. For example, following its acquisition of The Appliance Shed in 2013 with its four Auckland branches, Thorn Group launched a white label credit card with a full on-line application and approval process.
In 2014 dtr introduced a new credit scoring system with a plan to progressively replace its previous credit scoring processes. The company engaged SASIT to create a tablet-based (device agnostic) web application that integrates with the credit scoring engine and the back end finance system running on an IBM i server.
dtr’s driver for the project was moving towards a standard company-wide set of credit rules. This would enable automatic approval for lower-risk clients and a simpler review process of higher-risk clients. SASIT brought in a team of three for the project, two senior RPG developers and a .NET programmer. The outcome was a greatly improved user experience, from the previous green screen look to that of a modern mobile device.
The integration of the IBM i to the new credit scoring engine web service was the most challenging part of the work and was written in RPG4 by one of our senior developers. By radically changing the user experience and redesigning the back end process, dtr has enjoyed efficiency gains, more flexibility and an improved customer experience. The business has also experienced substantial growth post implementation.