St. George denies channel conflict accusation

by Adam Smith13 Mar 2013
“We already do this contact, but it’s come from our call centre,” Kirkpatrick said. “We had gotten complaints quite often that we hadn’t gotten accounts set up properly at settlement, or direct debits weren’t in place or that credit cards hadn’t arrived in time. This just gives a much better customer experience. A stickier customer from a broker’s perspective is a happier customer which means they stay longer and trail income is assured.”

Kirkpatrick assured Australian Broker that branch staff would not attempt to take existing business away from brokers.

“We ring the broker first to see what discussions they’ve had with the customer. If they’ve got a financial planning business in place or they’ve met the customer’s needs in terms of general insurance we won’t touch that. All we want to do is contact the customer to understand what’s been discussed, and if there are any unfulfilled needs we address that.”

Saldanha said his experience working as a Westpac branch employee raises concerns about the pressure branch staff feel to peel away broker clients.

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  • by Country Broker 13/03/2013 9:23:41 AM

    hands up all brokers who provided the feed back the branch was to contact the cleint on approval???

  • by Northern Broker 13/03/2013 9:38:42 AM

    Not me!! Had I been contacted, I would have been against it. In theory it's a great idea. In practice it has the potential for problems. ANZ's approach is the best I have seen, and the feedback from clients confirms that.

  • by Matthew 13/03/2013 9:39:12 AM

    "But Kirkpatrick said that branch staff contacting clients would not be home loan officers, and would only address products and services not already covered by the broker."

    So the person from the bank branch that calls the customer will actually have no training in home loans, yet will be welcoming the new customer due to their new home loan approval with the bank?

    That is a classic.

    Welcome to your home loan approval with us today, I will not provide you with any help or information in relation to your actual homeloan as im not a homeloan officer, however would you like a credit card, home insurance, a personal loan or anything else before I let you go?

    If the issues as stated surrounds the implementation of direct debits and so forth, then perhaps get it right the first time by looking at your pre-settlement paperwork and revising where needed to allow for these issues to be adressed correctly might be a better idea.