Bendigo and Adelaide Bank is currently in a recruitment push, despite challenges caused by pandemic-driven border closures.
The bank wants engineering talent for both its in-house teams and for its newly acquired Ferocia business, the technology company behind neobank Up.
Bendigo and Adelaide Bank chief information officer Ryan Brosnahan told iTnews both brands are “continually trying to hire more engineers” however the current market is “incredibly tough.”
“Having closed borders at the moment has just has added to that challenge. The reality is everyone's doing digital transformation.
“Therefore everyone needs engineering talent and with Covid-19 over the last few years, and having no immigration that's just added to that challenge.
“So it's a continual challenge for us ...finding great engineering talent.”
Brosnahan added its “really important” Ferocia staff are separate from the bank to maintain each company’s unique culture however “but obviously, Ferocia people do work on Bendigo applications as well.”
Despite the employment constraints Brosnahan said both teams are “finding some great people” and have recently hired some talented engineers and other IT professionals to support its current requirements.
“Although we were always going to have a supply demand mismatch, we are actually finding some really great people and that’s the advantage also of having both the Ferocia brand and the Bendigo brand out there,
“In both those spaces we’re actually hiring some fantastic engineers.”
In its recent half year results Bendigo and Adelaide Bank revealed it’s spending more on IT as it accelerates its modernisation and simplification strategy.
Brosnahan said its transformation project has put pressure on technology costs, which reached $42.8 million, compared to $38.9 million in the same time the year prior.
However, “in parallel with that, as we simplify and as we reduce the number of applications we have — that's obviously reducing technology costs so there is a balancing effect to some extent.”
As the bank continues its transformation, Brosnahan expects “heightened level of technology spend” compared to years prior.
Over the year Brosnahan believes spend will “remain pretty similar” with the bank investing “in accordance with how much we can grow”.
“So we'll flex our investments based on how much we can grow and therefore much we can afford to do.”
Part of the transformation Bendigo currently fast-tracked as a result of its Ferocia purchase, is the build out of its mobile banking app.
The new features are set to include “much more self-service, instead of having to go into a branch or ring the contact center”.
“Today, you can do a lot more on the Up app than you can on the Bendigo app in many instances, [we’ll] be looking to use a lot of that capability that was built in Up and deploy it to the Bendigo app.
“So make it easier to join, make it easier to chat in the app, make it easier to ask simple questions. Generally just try to help customers by making it easier."
Moving forward Brosnahan said Up Home, which is set to launch through neobank Up this year, “is going to be really exciting and a really great experience for customers because it's going to be quite different from things that are at the market today.”
Brosnahan added the speed at which Bendigo has been able to move into the cloud has created leverage for the bank to build out its own home loan experience and reduced ‘time to decision’ for customers.
Brosnahan added the health pandemic has “accelerated what customers are prepared to do digitally” with the banks experience to be “digital by design, but human where it matters”.
“We've found that actually, even if [customers] engage digitally, they want the ability to be able to talk to someone at some point.”