Product training: An investment in success

by AB09 Dec 2014
Straight-Through Processing (STP), the Holy Grail of the mortgage industry, is now an achievable reality due to the ingenuity and innovation fostered at NextGen.Net.

NextGen.Net has given the industry the landmark electronic lodgement service, ApplyOnline and ApplyOnline+, along with a slew of revolutionary efficiency driving features.

These efficiency driving tools were designed specifically to make STP achievable. However NextGen.Net is finding that these tools are frequently being under-utilised due to a lack of awareness and understanding of their platform’s capabilities.

Features such the G-NAF address file (for address lookup and verification), ACN and ABN search (access to the Australian Business Register and ASIC to check information provided) and the ApplyOnline Supporting Documents service (the identification of supporting document requirements at Point of Sale and validation against lender policy requirements), are sometimes overlooked - disadvantaging both lenders and brokers.

Tony Carn, Director of Sales at NextGen.Net comments “We’ve released some fabulous features over the past couple of years and we want to make sure our customers reap their full benefit. So we’re amping up our training to maximise awareness and use of these features.”

“We’ve identified that there is an under utilisation of some of the key features within ApplyOnline and consequently their benefits are not being realised. That’s where I enter the equation,” says NextGen.Net Training Manager, Michael Tong.

Tong believes it boils down to brokers feeling under constant pressure.

“I recognise that brokers are often time-poor.  I understand they want to get an application out the door and to the lender so they can start working on the next deal,” Tong says.

“Secondly, brokers are accustomed to doing things a certain way and may not be aware there is a better and faster way. Also that new features within ApplyOnline will enhance the quality of applications and if they just spend a few more minutes upfront the result will be much faster turnaround times.”

Feedback from lenders is showing that brokers who use the ‘Supporting Docs’ feature gain a much faster turnaround time.

Recently a BDM at one of the Big Four lenders told Tong that a broker emailed in feedback saying his first experience with our Supporting Docs service had sold him on it. “Within three hours of submitting an application he received unconditional approval pending receipt of the valuation,” Tong exclaims.

“That’s why I find it frustrating when I learn that some brokers and lenders are not reaping the full benefits of ApplyOnline simply because they’re not using all its brilliant features - such as my personal favourite, Supporting Documents.

“We are now seeing usage rates for Supporting Docs climb to 40% for lenders who pioneered the technology,” maintains Carn.

This in the space of nine-months is being heralded as a fantastic result.

“Supporting Docs is a classic example of how lenders and brokers can work together to achieve significant efficiency gains. With ‘Tongy’ providing critical training support we’ll soon see Supporting Docs become the standard.”

Tong’s focus is on improving an understanding of the features and benefits of the ApplyOnline offer.

At his training sessions he demonstrates that by using these features at Point of Sale, brokers get it right first-up, which means STP and a win/win for everyone involved in the scenario.

“The end result is happier customers, brokers and lenders,” he declares.

Tong conducts regular training sessions in small groups, large groups and on a one-on-one basis. The sessions are face-to-face or webinar, and audiences include brokers, lenders BDMs, credit staff and operations staff.

“By simply devoting an hour you’ll reap countless rewards in terms of quality and time,” he says.

Tong admits he identifies with the time-poor assertions of brokers. But adds that his recent experience with Windows 8 has taught him the value of training.

“I recently upgraded to Windows 8 and initially hated it,” he says. “I went into a local computer store and said, I want you to convince me it’s better than what I had previously. I invested time and energy into it, and learned a lot about its features; and now I love it.

“Once you get a proper handle on the efficiency driving features in ApplyOnline and how to utilise them to your advantage, they will become your greatest asset.”