Westpac pushes first home loans through new Customer Service Hub

First mortgages processed by key component of bank’s “one bank” program

Westpac has processed the first home loans on its new Customer Service Hub, a major component of the bank’s push to enable a “one bank multi-brand operating model” across its business.

As part of its full year results announcement The bank today revealed it had originated its first mortgages on the new platform – a small number of loans to Westpac employees -  representing “an important milestone in the modernisation of our technology infrastructure,” Westpac CEO Brian Hartzer said.

The Customer Service hub is the group’s largest transformation program. It is a key part of delivering Westpac’s vision of One Bank Platform: Standardising and streamlining back-end systems across the group and delivering a single view of customer across Westpac, St.George, Bank of Melbourne and BankSA.

Group chief information officer Dave Curran in 2015 outlined the vision for the program, which seeks to enable cross-channel conversations with the bank’s customers as well as drive efficiencies by rationalising Westpac’s application landscape and leveraging cloud computing.

The hub will “ultimately be the centrepiece of the Group’s origination and service processes,” the bank said today in its full year results announcement.

In the second half, the bank’s technology expenses grew by 3 per cent, which Westpac said was largely attributable to the group’s investment programs. Tech expenses for FY17 reached $1.92 billion, up 4 per cent year on year.

The bank said that its investment spend of $1.26 billion during boosted “progress in digitising the organisation, contributing to improved service and enhancing the technology infrastructure”.

Westpac said that the strength of its infrastructure was reflected in the reduction of the number of Severity 1 incidents (those with a major customer impact) during the year. In FY16 it experienced 19 Severity 1 incidents; in FY17 the figure dropped to five with none in the second half of the year.

For FY17 Westpac reported a statutory net profit of $7.99 billion, up 7 per cent, and cash earnings of $8.06 billion, up 3 per cent.

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