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Under the hood: challenging the lenders

One of the key components of ANZ's strategy is to help people buy and own a home. But although home ownership is a really important thing for people, it's often quite a hard task.

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At ANZ, we've been trying to make the home buying process more simple for our customers. We have worked to streamline our home loan processes and the way we interact with customers, while also investing in new technologies which reimagine the whole relationship. 

"“We essentially built the entire platform from the ground up and pulled away from the traditional ways of doing things.” - Sheerin

Challenger lender OneTwo aims to level the property playing field for customers, according to CEO Derek Sheerin. Originally incubated through the ANZi program, OneTwo has since been spun out of the program with ANZ one of its key investors.

So why would a bank invest in a challenger which – by its very definition – is a competitor of the banks? I discussed this with Sheerin and OneTwo Chief Technology and Product Officer Ash Crick in a recent video call.

According to Sheerin, the objective for the company was to totally reimagine the home loans process.

We wanted it to be super simple. We didn't want anything on paper [and] ideally not needing to call to a branch or anything like that,” he explains. “We essentially built the entire platform from the ground up and pulled away from the traditional ways of doing things.”

From a technology perspective, Crick says the team started off very simply by looking at the processes involved.

“We looked at how risk is managed, how the customer would go through an application process, how the customer service agent would typically interact with the customer,” he says. “We mapped out what our ideal world would look like. And with cloud technology the way it is at the moment, we can actually build software that meets our business needs.”

Crick said by starting “process down” and using cloud technologies, it was simple for OneTwo to build its entire stack from the ground up.

Sheerin says the team looked at everything that was going on in the industry and asked “how would we do this with no rules and no precedents?” So they decided to get rid of the home loan application altogether.

“We've created an experience where the customer and the agent don't have to think about what information needs to be gathered or the exact data points needed. They're instead both guided through a really great conversation and just have to focus on getting to the right outcome.”

One of the other unique propositions customers can take advantage from with OneTwo is their automatic rate-reducing home loan.

“[Our customers] start off with a fantastic interest rate but as they pay down the loan - whether it's on time or ahead of time - they earn automatic rate reductions,” Sheerin explains. “We want to help customers pay down their loan early and get it off their back in the time of their choosing.”

“We've got a fantastic backlog of great, what we think are, never before seen products and services that will really help consumers get through the journey of buying, owning or selling a home.”

You can listen to my whole conversation with Sheerin and Crick in the podcast above.

Shayne Elliott is CEO of ANZ

The views and opinions expressed in this communication are those of the author and may not necessarily state or reflect those of ANZ.

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