We have been meeting with Openwork on a fortnightly basis to plan and oversee the transition. They provided us with a dedicated project manager who has great experience in this type and scale of project and his guidance has been hugely important.
To ensure things go as smoothly as possible we are involving all key personnel from the relevant departments within both Just Mortgages and Openwork, including IT, training, finance, compliance and marketing departments. We have working parties in each area holding fortnightly reviews where we update on progress and plan next steps.
One of the most vital areas has been to ensure that all our 130 mortgage brokers get the necessary authorisation by Openwork. Openwork needs to approve each broker in the same way that they would a new recruit so we have been working together to ensure this goes through smoothly. Both Just Mortgages and L&G has always applied very high recruitment standards which has meant we have experienced very few challenges in this.
We will be running a bespoke session for our administrators so they can learn how to use the new Openwork system to progress our pipeline of business. Another session will be run for our compliance team for them to review the system from a sales quality perspective and learn how to use it to check cases against the new business quality standards. The L&G regime we have been working with for the last three years positions us very well for this.
We have designed a training schedule with Openwork which we will initially roll out to our divisional sales directors, followed by a group of our most experienced and successful brokers. Both sets of people will feedback to ensure that the course for the wider population of brokers hits all key messages and is delivered in the most effective way.
The training sessions will be carried out by Openwork but a senior manager from Just Mortgages will also attend every course to answer questions from the Just Mortgages perspective.
Pipeline management has been a key concern for us but L&G has been great, agreeing to provide our brokers with licenses for the L&G point of sale system for three months after we make the move to Openwork. Our administration and management teams will then have access to the L&G system for a further three months. This means that we can continue to manage our pipeline through the existing system so customers will feel no impact from our change of network.
So far we have experienced no worrying challenges and I think this is down to the planning and review processes we have adopted, and the fact we have developed and maintained open dialogue with Openwork, L&G and our respective teams.