St. George has poured cold water on accusations of channel conflict following a change to its customer contact policy.
In an email from St. George obtained by Australian Broker, general manager of mortgage broking Clive Kirkpatrick has informed brokers that the way broker-introduced customers are contacted by the bank will be changed.
"In the past, broker introduced customers have received a 'welcome on approval' call from our Customer Contact Centre, these calls will now be made from your friendly local branch," the email said.
Kiran Saldanha of The Finance Professionals Sydney told Australian Broker the change represents clear channel conflict. Because the contact from the branch happens at approval rather than after settlement, Saldanha said there is nothing to deter branch workers from taking brokers' clients.
"At that point in time the client has not signed any documents with the broker. The timing is too early in the piece to let a branch person contact the client and decide they're not going to touch the deal. They're going to find some way or other to walk away with that business," he said.
But Kirkpatrick told Australian Broker the change has come following broker feedback, and is to ensure a better broker and customer experience.