How one brokerage measures success— and how you should too

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    While most brokerages measure success on revenue and the number of new loans written, IFA Mortgages and Finance measure performance in a slightly different way.

    In an interview with MPA, IFA Mortgages and Finance directing mortgage broker and a 2018 MPA Top 100 Brokers finalist Anthony O’Flynn said his team strives for zero discharges from their existing loan book and keeps churn rate to an absolute minimum. They have a support team whose job is to exclusively price and review existing clients to ensure customer satisfaction and the business’s competitiveness.

    “If you have a well maintained loan book and know that 99% of your clients are happy with your services, you can be sure that your name is the one they’ll remember when they’re looking to buy an investment property five years later, or a family friend is looking to buy their first home,” O’Flynn said.

    “With information on rates and loans available to anyone who knows how to use Google, you need to be on the front foot and be proactive with supplying information to your clients. This will become increasingly pertinent once the royal commission’s findings are released, and I urge all brokers to do the same to justify the 30 years of income we have received on home loans.”

    Lately, O’Flynn’s team spends significant resources on first home buyers and establishing themselves as a brand that will hold the hand of FHBs throughout the process. Their FHB loans doubled in the 2018 financial year.

    They created a program where referrals from their loan book are rewarded with an EFTPOS gift card. According to O’Flynn, it’s a small token of appreciation that creates little impact to their bottom line, but leaves “a nice taste”.

    Forming new habits
    Having worked in banking for 20 years and in broking for over 15, O’Flynn picked up habits and developed excuses when things were not performing as perfectly as he expected them to. He eventually learned to let go of his ways.

    “Acknowledging that just because your systems work well now, [that might change] in the future. That allows you to look at existing practices a bit more critically and to weed out these habits,” O’Flynn said.

    He added that bringing on a couple of younger staff members has helped because they see policies and processes through fresh eyes, and they challenge how things go work in the business. While their inputs can often be a tough pill to swallow, they’re what the business needs to locate new areas of growth. His team is now able to offer more products, with half of their business in 2018 written via sub-majors and alternative lenders.

    “I think having this diversity with product offering really empowers our clients,” O’Flynn said.

    One in their journey
    With a rich experience in broking and banking, O’Flynn already has a fairly good idea which client to take on right from the first phone call. This ability, along with specialist lenders becoming more utilised and property prices going down, allows his team to assist a greater number of customers who are usually people who had been knocked back by other lenders at every step of the way.

    “Being able to provide a solution, to help them realise their property dreams, and to get their foot in the door means that I will always be a part of their journey,” O’Flynn said.

    “We have a mandate to go above and beyond — that is what our industry champions for, and it is how we differentiate ourselves from the banks and those brokers who are simply in it for a quick buck.”

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