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Westpac to overhaul top tier segments

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Australian Broker | 15 Feb 2012, 06:00 AM Agree 0
Westpac has announced it will launch a new 'Platinum' top tier broker segment at a series of road shows.
  • Coast Broker | 15 Feb 2012, 09:40 AM Agree 0
    So how much business do you have to write to become a Platinum Broker with Westpac. I would assume it would be a very large amount so are the Platinum Westpac Brokers doing the right thing by their potential clients as it would be all of their business would be going to Westpac. Are their potential clients therefore missing out on a better product with another lender just to satisfy the ego of the Paltinum Broker. Also will a Platinum Broker have access to better pricing. They may as well become a Home Finance Manager for Westpac.
  • SunnyCoastBroker | 15 Feb 2012, 09:47 AM Agree 0
    All well and good, but what about commission levels?? They were the first to cut commissions in 2007 and extend clawbacks out to 2 years. It's difficult not to be cynical.
  • Joseph Meyer | 15 Feb 2012, 09:48 AM Agree 0
    How Dissappointing is it that Customers be them Mortgage Brokers or their clients have to have their service levels discriminated against by loan volumes.The sad part here is that the banks have set the benchmarks by providing their high volume introducers with 24 hour turnarounds plus benefits but the rest of the introducers, may be just as loyal, have to suffer through the bottom end of the customer service cycle. And put up with the errors and delays. One bank, one system why can't it all be the same in service levels throughout it's organisation.
  • Derek Miles | 15 Feb 2012, 09:53 AM Agree 0
    Broker tiered support is a discrimination against customers (not brokers) of brokers who are not in the top tier. How on earth is a broker on a lower level able to provide their clients with exceptional service when they are hindered by lenders who discriminate against them and their customers. That is why so many brokers refuse to use these lenders and these lenders are missing out on exceptional quality customers.
  • WhistleBlower. | 15 Feb 2012, 10:00 AM Agree 0
    Put simply - who ever it is, that FINALLY develops a REAL, GENUINE and JOINT PARTNERSHIP with brokers will develop significant value and market share.

    The Banks and non-banks do a shocking job of connecting these dots, let alone acting on them.

    Third party is here to stay --- who ever takes "Partnering" to its proper level, will win the domestic mortgage space.... and it looks like Westpac have finally seen this opportunity, but it means you have to stop the cold war between banking staff (both cultural and through bonus's /KPI's $$$) ... the first Bank (no pun intended) that finally does this properly will reap huge rewards... massive rewards!

    My bet is Westpac is looking to grow by developing 3rd party.... basically, develop an super-savvy, highly skilled, self-funded outsourced workforce, decrease the friction between the parties (administratively and cultural) look for economies-of-scale opportunities and linkage that has existed before... then (over time)decrease staff numbers inside your branch network and make your business lean.... increasing productivity, growing your net margin (That's the next frontier in a world economy on the slowdown).

    All Westpac needs to do is keep an eye out for internal sabotage by people wanting to maintain the status quo.

    There is obviously a remit from "The Boss" to 'sort this out' once and for all..... this will be great for brokers and in particular mortgage managers who in the main are treated as third class citizens.

    Strategic thinking dictates that Westpac's desire to bed down this segment, is just a test-case of what's to come.... this could even be one small aspect inside a larger change/regeneration programme.

    Brokers should get into bed with Westpac now... and watch that space.
  • Brad Oliver | 15 Feb 2012, 10:10 AM Agree 0
    To become a Platimum broker with Westpac means you would virtually be a quasi Westpac Branch whereby all you sell is Westpac loans and that's not true brokering. I have been an Adv + broker with Westpac for many years, but only because at that time they had great credit policy and competetive products. Things are a little different now and I am finding better service and products elsewhere at the moment. This has now caused me to lose my Adv + status, but I won't push one lender's products just so I can stay in their "good books". CBA is no better in this regard with their segmentation policy. If lenders want support from Brokers they need to deliver CONSISTENTLY good service, competetive products with flexible credit policies......it's these lenders that ultimately win my (and my clients') business.
  • ozboy | 15 Feb 2012, 10:36 AM Agree 0
    Hope all those brokers getting the wording in their NCCP documentation correct and wonder how long they will have to spend on the "conflict of interest" paragraph and explanation to the client. While we all like recognition sometimes what it brings with it can be negative.

    Perhaps the big question is "if you are a broker is this an incentive?".
  • not what it seems | 15 Feb 2012, 11:23 AM Agree 0
    Looks remarkably like Westpac are attempting to build a "Westpac mobile lender division" without having to employ the participants. Really it is another Bank benefit and cost cutting strategy.
  • Positive Broker | 15 Feb 2012, 01:10 PM Agree 0
    Westpac want mobile lenders. No broker in their right mind would allow themselves to become so compromised by offering Westpac Products alone. Keep supporting the regionals, I say!
  • WhistleBlower. | 15 Feb 2012, 01:48 PM Agree 0
    I feel compelled to add:

    It can't all be the same level of service (relative to volumes) as it is not economic... the God ugly truth is, no broker in this country (or elsewhere) is really a 'Broker'.

    Everyone acting as a broker mostly represent 4 lenders (be honest) ... the term 'Broker' is a falshood, as, to be a true broker we would have to divide our loan applications across all lenders.

    Business like War, has one casualty... The Truth!

    And the truth is, if any broker shares loans around with all the available lenders, then they don't have a relationship with any.

    That was true 10 years ago, and more so now.

    Banks are re-engineering this whole industry. From Canberra via 365 day-a-year fully funded lobby groups, through policy and steering documents (including design) and working inside Government instruments such as ASIC, to control the legislative environment.

    We brokers and mortgage managers have no say - forums such as this only provide a narrow door into one small room, near the toilet well away from the halls of power and influence.

    If you seriously think your value proposition as a broker is weakened by aligning to one bank, then you might want to re-examine your motives for doing this kind of work (you are not a heart surgeon savings lives, and guess what, even heart surgeons do what they do for money), and while you are there, talk with the local Holden Dealership (who sells one make of car) and tell him his 'dealership' model is flawed.

    Of course Westpac wants a 'cost free' model - I would.

    'Conflict of Interest' is solved in 1 minute - "We represent one lender" Mortgage Manangers have doing it for years.

    To get Westpacs 'supa dupa' offer - just find 10 mates (Brokers) quickly set up an agreement/partnership whereby all of you (regardless of your 'other' activities) submit under one group name your Westpac deals.... in-fact, call it 'The Westpac Mortgage Group' an alliance between brokers to combine all their Westpac submissions into one entity, and yet keep all your 'other' lenders serviced by your existing model.

    Actually, hell -- I had better go and register that now... seeya.
  • James Green | 15 Feb 2012, 08:22 PM Agree 0
    Tony MacRae visited us in our office last week. I must admit I respect him for hitting the road and getting the hard feedback on his business.
    Westpac A+ is outstanding with their same day approval commitment. They are simply the quickest in the market today.
    The fact is segmentation is important. It’s simply wrong to put a high performing broker (that rarely makes mistakes), behind another broker that creates blockages and slows the whole production line down.
  • Broker | 16 Feb 2012, 06:07 PM Agree 0
    I wonder how a Broker can demonstrate and justify to a client that Westpac are even competitive at the moment. If you like your clients tipping lenders unnecessarily , then Westpac is for you and them!
  • JBJB | 17 Feb 2012, 10:39 AM Agree 0
    Westpac's rate card is uncompetitive (but we'll be competitive if you do a pricing request), their credit scoring is too harsh and inflexible and this new segmentation move motivates the majority of brokers who don't meet Westpac's volume requirements to support them even less. They won't gain anything from this one.
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