Australian Broker TV

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Preparation and productivity key for successful year to come

As the financial year comes to a close brokers must once again take a look at how improvements can be made in the year to come. On this week's Broker TV we speak to Kathy Cummings of Commonwealth who says that one big focus should be ensuring the customer's experience is a smooth one.

Video transcript below:

Anna Temple, Australian Broker Online
Anna Temple:
 As another financial year comes to a close, brokers must once again take a look at how improvements can be made in the year to come.  Kathy Cummings of Commonwealth says that one big focus should be ensuring the customer’s experience is a smooth one.

Kathy Cummings, EGM, Commonwealth Bank of Australia
Kathy Cummings:  Getting the customer’s expectation correct in the first place, so that they bring everything with them.  There is nothing worse than them having to go, firstly us going back to the broker to get more information, a broker going back to the customer to get more information.  That’s a bad customer experience.  One of the best measures of customer satisfaction is if we can limit the amount of time a customer has to become worried about how their mortgage is going through and that’s from both our position and from the broker’s position.  So getting it right first time is absolutely critical.  
Another thing is taking control of customer’s expectations, so things like making sure you get a valuation where you can upfront.  So customers we all think our properties are worth so much money and we need to make sure that the owners estimate, if it’s a refinance or when they are purchasing a property, that customer would have a val upfront or getting the IVM upfront, that really helps make sure the deal is set up right the first time.  We don’t have to go back and rework, rework the structure, rework the way the customers want to put the deal in, we have got the ratios right, so it’s through.
Anna Temple:  However, Cummings also maintains that the biggest challenge facing the industry today is still productivity and that brokers should be doing all they can to improve on this.  
Kathy Cummings: The largest issue that Australia is facing, not just the mortgage market is productivity.  It’s a global issue, it’s an Australian issue, it’s an industry issue.  You don’t pick up a paper any day of the week, then you don’t hear about an industry staring into productivity.  So for us, we are trying to help the broker market through the various Lean workshops we are doing, through our Kaizen approach and through just providing additional training and support to get their productivity right.  
It’s about as you start to build critical mass and more complexity into your business, so if you are thinking about going from being a single operation to 2 or 3 people on you and you have got 2 or 3 admin assistants, if you don’t get those processes right, if you can’t track exactly your pipeline, if you don’t know you are measuring the right metrics, through a visual management board, how are you going to know when you are actually getting there.  So Kaizen and the various Lean workshops really help you with your business planning and understanding what business metrics you should be watching.
Anna Temple:  This is Anna Temple reporting for Australian Broker Online.