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Raj Kapoor was recently appointed head of broker distribution for Adelaide Bank after acting in the role for the past six months. He told MPA he intends to deepen the Bank’s relationship with brokers to become more a business partner than a credit provider – something Adelaide Bank has already taken strides on through a series of enhancements to its application process and commitment fostering long term trusted relationships with its broker partners. He shared the details in an exclusive interview with our online journalist Kate McIntyre.
MPA: You have recently been appointed head of broker distribution for Adelaide Bank. What are your goals for the role?
Raj Kapoor: I’m lucky to have been officially appointed in the role after being acting head of broker distribution since October last year. My goals are to build on the momentum we started about 18 months ago when we made the conscious decision to expand our reach in the broker market by hiring new BDMs and new support office staff and by growing our presence on the east coast. We’ve done a great job at that and my goal is to consolidate and build on this rollout and to further position and strengthen our business for future growth.
MPA: Why are non-majors like Adelaide Bank so important at the moment?
Raj Kapoor: I think what we bring to the table is another choice that provides everything the majors can do, but with a more personal touch. By investing in technology and efficiency, economies of scale and our people capabilities, the value proposition we offer allows brokers to confidently offer a broader choice of lender to their customers – and choice and competition is always a good thing.
MPA: In what ways has Adelaide Bank simplified and enhanced its processes?
Raj Kapoor: In terms of simplification, we look at it in three formats. Upfront, we are investing in our application processes to make it simpler. We’ve made it a lot easier in terms of ApplyOnline, our application platform and the application process brokers go through. Then in the next step of the assessment process, we have made a lot of policy changes. Comprehensive Credit Review (CCR) has now been implemented and that has helped us bring in more efficiencies. We’ve implemented checklists and provided enhanced training for our team to generally make life a lot simpler in terms of the experience our brokers receive. The last part of that process is settlement and we’ve started to lean more on better technology for that part of the chain. Simplifying that process has helped because we were able to bring in digital verification of ID which speeded up the verification of supplied documentation.
MPA: Why have you chosen to make these changes?
Raj Kapoor: There’s no standing still and we have to stay in pace with the times. The world is moving quite fast and efficiency is critical. It’s a hot property market right now and time is money, particularly for the end customer. Our value proposition and our cost of funds are getting quite close to most major competitors. Everybody is competing on a similar sort of playing field, so efficiency combined with a trusted, personalised service is a key differentiator. Running a better business allows us to provide a better value proposition to our brokers and to the end customer.
MPA: What does the next 12 months hold?
Raj Kapoor: For the next 12 months our strategy will be to deepen the relationship we have with our brokers. We have formed some really strong and trusting relationships and our focus over the next 12 months will be to build on those relationships to then deepen our connection and be more of a business partner rather than a credit provider.
MPA: Where do brokers sit within this?
Raj Kapoor: We understand brokers are business owners too. By partnering with us, we can help them add more value to their business, not just in terms of getting loans processed, but by giving them insights into their business and providing them with opportunities to enhance their own efficiency, which as a business owner can only be a plus.
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