Time to offer agents a ‘genuine career path’

The real estate industry has been challenged to match the training standards of the mortgage broking industry.

Starr Partners chief executive Douglas Driscoll said his recent experience as a judge for the Australian Broking Awards made him admire the way broking manages education.

“I am very impressed by the systematic and structured approach to training in the broker space and it left me reflecting on how much better it is – generally speaking – than in our industry,” Mr Driscoll said.

“When you look at the broker space, it just seems more structured, but what it also suggests from an outsider’s point of view is they look as if they're trying to create a genuine career path. I think that’s probably what we're lacking in our industry.”

Mr Driscoll told REB that while there are a lot of good real estate trainers, education sessions can go to waste because many agencies lack a structure to implement the lessons.

He said the real estate industry should create a systemised development path for new recruits, so they clearly understand what skills they need to learn and are mentored through the process.

Anyone who wants to join the main mortgage broking association, the MFAA, is required to hold a diploma or a Certificate IV.

Those with a Certificate IV must agree to complete a diploma within one year and must agree to be mentored by an experienced member for two years.

The MFAA has helped drive an increase in education standards in the past few years, according to Alan Hemmings, who is general manager of Oxygen Home Loans, which is owned by McGrath Estate Agents.

Brokers are required to submit their mortgages through aggregation groups, which process loans and also provide training and development for their members.

Mr Hemmings told REB that aggregators generally have good training programs, which provide continuing education for brokers who aren’t part of big mortgage groups.

[Related: Agents give overwhelming support to national licensing]

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