Top broker advises on maximum growth with minimum pain

by Julia Corderoy18 Jun 2015
The secret to achieving maximum growth with minimum growth pains is to hire more support staff, according to one growing Sydney brokerage.

In the last year, MPA top 10 independent brokerage and veteran Australian Mortgage Award finalist, Home Loan Experts almost doubled its staff headcount from 35 to 65. However, by this time next year, the Sydney based brokerage hopes to almost double its head count again, to 120. 

Speaking to Australian Broker, Home Loan Experts’ managing director, Otto Dargan said successfully growing a broking business isn’t just about hiring more brokers. He says you can’t overestimate the value of support staff. 

“In most broking businesses, there is often a goal to have as high a percentage of staff as brokers as they can. Other brokerages might have 10 brokers and just two or three admin staff, and that’s it.

“But only 30% of our staff are actually brokers, which means our brokers have an enormous amount of support so they can focus on writing loans. 

“We believe that having 1.2 support staff for every broker is ideal. That is how one of brokers was able to submit $12 million last month.”

Currently, only 18 of the Home Loan Experts’ 65 staff are mortgage brokers, the rest are in administration and IT support, marketing, accounts and human resources. 

“We have got a massive back office and the reason for that is so we are enabled to grow quickly,” Dargan told Australian Broker.

While the biggest priority to achieve successful growth is hiring the right people, according to Dargan, the next thing is about making sure all your systems and processes are scalable.

...if anything isn’t scalable it is going to break as you grow. To ensure you are scalable, for every system in the business you need to ask yourself, 'will this work if we have 200 staff?' If the answer is 'no', then you need to fix it. 

You also have to do everything properly and don’t cut any corners. If you do, it is a false economy and you will end up paying for it later.
 

COMMENTS

  • by Papery 18/06/2015 9:55:29 AM

    Nice..... if your in Sydney where the average house price is approaching $1m, so the average mortgage deal size is also BIG leading to a larger com which allows you to hire so many more support staff.

  • by Part time believer 18/06/2015 2:35:50 PM

    Two question for Otto. 1) How much do the support staff suck out of the bottom line and 2) Is this growth for growth sake? Ps I also submitted $12 mil in last month and I have one part time admin assistant. Guess who makes more money?

  • by Michael Kent 18/06/2015 3:45:00 PM

    Typical Aussie tall poppy syndrome at its best! Jealous? Give credit where it's due, good on them I say!