Promoted by Auswide Bank
Much has changed in banking since 1966, but one thing that hasn’t changed is this Bank’s commitment to making home ownership more achievable and accessible for everyday Australians. Auswide outlines how the significance of their broker partners and the strength of their voice is helping them to continue to achieve this vision.
The foundations of Auswide Bank were set firmly from within the community. In a time when the market was dominated by the big banks, a group of visionary Queenslanders starting a regional building society with the goal of helping local people secure home ownership on a low deposit.
As Community support swelled and demand grew they rebranded to Wide Bay Capricorn Building Society, later becoming Wide Bay Australia, where their valuable relationship with brokers and a third party distribution model began.
Seventeen years on and broker partners continue to be an integral part of the strategy and the building society grew up to become Auswide Bank. Auswide became Australia’s 10th bank with assets currently under management of over $3 billion.
Although a non-major bank, Auswide identified early on the important role brokers play in the mortgage industry and how partnering with them would support the Bank’s vision and commitment to everyday Australians.
The need to strengthen the relationship in the third party sector and to build a strong service proposition for their broker partners saw the appointment of a new Head of Third Party, Tracy Field who highlighted the need to evolve the broker experience as a part of delivering the service proposition.
After working with external consultants, Auswide embarked on a complete review of its’ end to end Broker Journey.
“Engaging brokers in the process, giving them a voice and being prepared to listen was pivotal in delivering the right outcomes and understanding what we needed to change”, Ms Field said.
Over the last 12 months the Bank has been busy working on the implementation of the majority of the 33 initiatives that were identified in the review.
The results to date have been extremely pleasing, both for the Bank and more importantly have significantly improved the broker experience.
Ms Field also said, “The objective for Auswide is to be simple to do business with, to have real conversations with our brokers, and to support them with real solutions for their clients.
The entire Third Party team is very hands on in providing support to our brokers. This includes both myself and the Head of Loans Origination, Brooke Irwin, her team of analysts and my Broker Relationship Managers. Being approachable, solution orientated and engaged with our brokers helps us to adapt quickly and be aware of the changing needs of our brokers”.
Delivery of the last remaining initiatives will see some comprehensive integration of technology take place progressively over the next six months.
In today’s environment of regulation and compliance it is very evident that lenders who better utilise technology augment the experience for their broker partners.
When Auswide completes delivery of its’ final Initiatives, an upfront valuation solution, improved loan document delivery system and a streamlined document validation and verification system will be available to brokers. Replacement of the current Auswide Broker Website with a comprehensive broker portal will offer enhanced functionality, easy navigation, access to a suite of tools and resources, as well as the more traditional product, policy and general information.
”Industry reports and our external Consultants’ report noted ‘Speed to Decision’ as one of the key factors identified by brokers that adds value to their own customer service proposition. Adapting and changing to ensure continual improvement in this area has to underpin our Broker Journey”, the Head of Third Party said.
As well as having the right people in the Third Party team and the right solutions in place for broker partners, there is also a lot of pride in the Award winning, unique products the Bank offers to its customers.
Fixed rate home loans which have plugged in features that offer the bonus of flexibility (reflecting the Bank’s Building Society origins) right down to low rate credit cards that track the RBA rate.
It leaves little doubt as to why Auswide named their home loan package, the ‘Freedom Package’ or that they are serious about their vision of helping everyday Australians to achieve home ownership.
“The key to achieving the Bank’s vision is continuing to invest in strengthening our broker partnerships and continuing to listen and respond. This partnership is a relationship we are firmly committed to and look forward to growing together’.
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