Assume a boy, Ploni, is born to a non-Jewish mother and a Jewish father in Israel. Ploni's mother is not halachically Jewish but has integrated into non-Orthodox Jewish culture. Ploni speaks, reads, and writes in Hebrew as his mother tongue, and knows no holidays other than Sukkos, Hanukkah, Pesach, etc. He fasts on Yom Kippur, has a huge traditional seder with all his family on Pesach, etc.
Later, Ploni and his family move to America, where Ploni attends high school. Over the years, he gets more and more in touch with Orthodox Judaism, and starts to keep strict Shabbos, Yom Tov, kashrus, davening three times a day with tefillin and tallit, etc. Assume Ploni has been doing this, as well as studying a lot of Torah (daily Chumash portion, Gemara daf yomi, and Shulchan Aruch) and reading much Jewish literature, for two years, but is aware that he is not halachically Jewish. He has nonetheless not yet reached out to a Beis Din/rabbi.
Would such a background have any tangible effect on Ploni's conversion process? I've read posts in this forum about the fact that Beis Dins should theoretically be more lenient toward "Zera Yisrael", but is this what takes place למעשה, especially if the conversion is done by the RCA?
(Answers from personal experience would be appreciated)