RACQ Bank celebrates its first birthday
We talk to the RACQ Bank CEO Michelle Bagnall about the first year.
September 2018 marked a significant milestone In RACQ history – it was the first anniversary since Queensland Teachers Mutual Bank (QTMB) and RACQ merged to become RACQ Bank.
To celebrate the occasion, we sat down with RACQ Bank CEO Michelle Bagnall to discuss the number of monumental goals the bank has already met and what members can expect next.
It’s the first anniversary for RACQ Bank, how does that feel?
It’s an incredibly proud moment for RACQ. The first half of this year has really been about getting the bank into RACQ and integrating to make sure we are all operating as one RACQ. We have seen that come to life in the second half of this year and are really seeing the benefits to members whether they are from the bank or not.
What are some of the changes RACQ Bank has gone through since launch?
In our first year as a bank there have been some changes, but we are equally proud of the things that haven’t changed. We have stayed committed to the points of contact and are dedicated to being there for members.
As CEO, you must have some personal highlights from throughout the year?
My proudest moment has been watching my people come on this journey and see how proud they are of the RACQ brand. They were proud of the QT Mutual Bank (QTMB) brand and are equally as proud of the RACQ brand. I think the secret to success in RACQ Bank is bringing in a little bit of that RACQ patrol magic to members every day when they deal with the bank.
How has the bank grown in its first year of operation?
We have seen about 15% growth in RACQ members dealing with RACQ Bank. We put that down to doing the basics right day in and day out. We are not perfect, but we work to get better each day and strive to be better for the members we serve. If we can continue that commitment and get the basics right, that alone will make us different.
What kind of response have you seen from members?
We have had a fantastic response from RACQ members to the bank and not just from the products they provide. We are also starting to see members enjoying the full range of benefits they get from being with RACQ, not just RACQ Bank. When you’re a member of RACQ Bank you get the full strength of everything RACQ has to offer. It’s something for everyone including all the fantastic discounts and member benefits.
On top of that, RACQ Bank also experienced five consecutive months of highest ever lending, more than in the 53 years of QTMB history – how was this achieved?
What we have seen in those five consecutive months of record breaking lending is a sign that members are engaging with what we are offering. We have a competitive product in market with the Mortgage Special Saver at 3.62% (comparison rate 3.62%). We are also holding to that rate while some others are going up. Its more than just the lending though, it’s about how we actually care for the member and their long-term aspirations. So, it isn’t just the lending we are focused on, and because of that we are seeing some fantastic results.
Those results were recognised with multiple 5-star Canstar ratings – how did that feel?
The five-star Canstar ratings were another sign we are doing the right things and heading in the right direction. Again, we never claim to be perfect but are consistently working day in, day out, to get better and it’s great to see recognition from organisations like Canstar which is recognised across the industry. But you know what I equally love, is when I see all the compliments come in from members about our team.
It seems that trust is a big thing for RACQ and RACQ Bank - how do you handle that responsibility from members?
One of the greatest assets and biggest responsibilities we have is the trust the public has in us. We don’t take that for granted. We measure trust through surveys and our members tell us we have trust rating between 90-95%. We sit very high on the trust measure and don’t take that for granted as it’s something we earn every day. I am a big believer in the old saying trust arrives on a snail and leaves on a stallion. You must earn that trust every day and protect the relationship we have with the member.
Now, some were worried that teachers wouldn’t be as represented in RACQ Bank after the merger – how have you handled those concerns?
Teachers are the legacy of RACQ Bank and will remain in our hearts and in all our actions. We remain committed and have our team out with coffee carts in schools on a regular basis. We are actually seeing a greater depth in our relationship with teachers across Queensland as we sit in amongst the broader RACQ group. A lot of people might not know this, but RACQ itself hires a lot of teachers, those teachers build education programs which RACQ takes into schools.
Is there a secret ingredient to the success RACQ Bank has seen in its first year?
RACQ people are the magic ingredient, every time we receive a compliment they aren’t talking about our processes, but the person who helped them. It doesn't matter whether that person was in a patrol car, on the phone or in the bank branch. It’s always the person.
What’s next for RACQ Bank?
There are big plans for year two. We are here to serve RACQ members and we are always focused on doing the right thing day in and day out. We are always thinking what can we do better for Queenslanders and what can we do differently to the other banks. To sum it up, we are protecting the bank of today and building for the bank of tomorrow. There’s a really exciting second year to come.
Banking and loan products issued by Members Banking Group Limited ABN 83 087 651 054 AFSL/Australian credit licence 241195 trading as RACQ Bank. Fees, charges, terms, conditions and lending criteria apply. Contact us for a copy. This is general advice only and may not be right for you.
Comparison rate is based on a loan amount of $150,000 with monthly repayment over 25 years. WARNING: This comparison rate is true only for the examples given and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or other loan amounts might result in a different comparison rate.
Mortgage Saver Special is available for home loan applications received from 5 April 2018 and is for new lending only. Customers with an existing home loan can switch to Mortgage Saver Special with a minimum $20,000 in additional new lending.