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Big four boost broker support

by James Mitchell8 minute read

Australia’s major lenders have listened to the needs of mortgage brokers and are investing heavily in their respective third-party support networks.

The Adviser’sThird Party Banking Report 2015 – Major Lenders found that all four banks improved their broker support services over the last 12 months.

Brokers ranked Westpac the best lender for broker support, improving by 7.11 points over the year for a total score of 44.22 (37.11 in 2014). CBA came in second with a 2.50 point improvement, earning 41.60 points (39.10), while ANZ ranked third after raising its game by 3.16 points to 40.43 (37.27). NAB Broker dropped from first place to fourth this year but still managed to gain 0.28 points for a score of 39.71 (39.43).

NAB once boasted the largest BDM force in the market; however, the lender’s competitors quickly realised this strategy and replicated it, according to Steve Kane, general manager of NAB Broker.

The group has recently set up a process whereby the area that services all brokers for credit approval, documentation and settlements is now lined up with the way the BDMs manage brokers on an account basis under the various aggregators.

“We are also looking to add value by strengthening those teams so there will basically be a lead BDM who will have the senior relationships, there will be an in-house person making sure everything goes through very smoothly and they will be supported by others which flow through to our third-party area,” Mr Kane told The Adviser.

“So we are aligning them on a pure account management basis so a broker will know exactly who they are dealing with from when they work with us at a BDM level right through to the transaction and beyond.

“We are reorganising our structure within NAB Broker,” he said.

Meanwhile, Westpac (ranked by brokers as the worst of the majors for broker support in 2014) has grown its BDM force by more than 30 per cent over the last year.

Westpac general manager of broker distribution Tony MacRae told The Adviser that the bank has listened to what brokers want.

“We needed more BDMs, a different skill set from our BDMs and we needed them to be far more visible.

“We have increased our BDMs by a third in the last 12 months and are training them in new skills and services so they can bring new skills and services to brokers,” Mr MacRae said.

 [Related: Australia's top major lender revealed]