MFAA chief executive Phil Naylor has said the idea of a certified practising certificate for brokers is not a new one, and that the MFAA have been working on the initiative for some time.
CBA executive general manager of third party and mobile banking Kathy Cummings has commented that brokers should have to earn a qualification proving practical acumen.
Naylor has now told Australian BrokerNews this initiative has been spearheaded by the MFAA since 2009.
"At this time there is not a practical theories test, and that's why we have stated as an official requirement that members have to do practical co-studies," Naylor said.
"Part of the MFAA's strategic objective as well as having education requirements is that members will be required to obtain a practice certificate. We are currently talking with lenders to ascertain the requirements. It's not something new. It's part of what we have wanted to achieve for a number of years."
While Cummings supported the MFAA's Diploma requirements, she questioned the value the qualification added to the industry. Naylor has argued that the association's Diploma requirement positions brokers as professionals, while a practical certification would ensure their competency.
"We're building the broker to be seen by the regulators, by the public and by the media as a professional. They're all building blocks of that, the educational standards and the practical standards," he said.
Naylor would not be drawn on whether any practical certification would use lender conversion ratios as a benchmark, and instead claimed the MFAA was still gathering feedback from lenders to "ascertain what they think is appropriate". He said he hoped the association could gather the necessary feedback from lenders soon, and assured brokers that their feedback would be sought on any potential certification requirements.
"The challenge really has been to be able to get lenders to understand and agree with the concept, and we're working through that process now. We need engagement from lenders, and then we'll seek feedback from our members, and feedback from the broking groups and aggregators," Naylor said.
"It's something that's not gong to be done from an ivory tower. We're going to be talking to a lot of people to make sure we get it right," he added.
CBA champions new broker practising certificate