Industry super fund bank ME has announced the completion of a total rebuild of its technology systems, which will allow the non-major to offer new competitive home loans and speed up turnaround times.
ME CEO, Jamie McPhee, says the bank has invested nearly $90 million over five years, employing 25 vendors and over 700 personnel to write over 1 million lines of code.
“We’ve built and integrated 7 new software systems and moved 320,000 customers on to these systems, all with minimal disruptions.”
McPhee said the new systems are state-of-the-art and would keep ME competitive well into the future.
“When we planned transformation we had the option to renovate the house or build a new one. While more challenging, we chose the latter.
“The result is a brand-new piece of banking architecture that’s been built to be updated – future-proofing the Bank. That’s a structural advantage other organisations would be envious of.”
As a part of the rebuild, the bank has built eight new banking products on its new systems, but will maintain just one centralised record for each customer for the first time.
“When a customer now calls we have all their details at our fingertips, which means quicker, more accurate customer service,” McPhee said.
ME has already seen big productivity and customer experience improvements from the new business process automation system, Pega.
“We can process more applications for the same effort and easily absorb higher volumes as we grow. It also translates into a better customer experience.
“The time it now takes to open a deposit or transaction account has been cut from 5 days to 5 minutes; the time to get conditional approval on a home loan from 3 days to 3 minutes.”
However, McPhee said one of the most important outcomes of transformation is the ability to offer new competitive variable home loans.
“Our old technology restricted us to one variable home loan product. Transformation means we can offer new variable rate home loans priced competitively.
“We’ve just launched a basic home loan with a variable rate of 4.29% p.a. for the first time and with 10% of the market purchasing this product we expect it to boost lending growth.”
With transformation complete, McPhee says ME is now focusing on capitalising on the opportunities the new technology provides. He said a range of work programs are already in train.
This announcement comes just after the industry super fund bank announced commission changes for brokers – increasing up-front commission to brokers from 0.60% to 0.65%.