2 S H A K E S

Effortless Onboarding & AML CDD

Colliers Wellington DBG achieves compliance for its business with an AML solution from 2Shakes

Following the introduction of the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009 (AML/CFT Act) in New Zealand, Colliers had to ensure that processes were in place to be compliant.  The Act was introduced in phases across different entities and legislation for Real Estate Agents was introduced with effect from 1 January 2019. 

Viv Collier

Colliers is a global real estate company with offices in 27 New Zealand locations throughout the north and south islands. Colliers provides a wide range of services to commercial real estate users, owners, investors and developers. It’s world-wide operations include operations in 67 countries and over 17,000 business professionals.

Viv Collier

Viv Collier is the Administration and Compliance Manager for Colliers Wellington DBG (that includes Colliers Nelson, Blenheim, New Plymouth, Palmerston North and Kapiti) and it was her responsibility to research and draw-up the framework for AML and define how to respond to the AML legislation.

Finding the right solution…

Viv’s research was thorough and included attending industry conferences which is where she met and learned about the 2Shakes AML solution. It met Collier’s requirements and 2Shakes seemed better set-up with a more advanced solution than the other companies being reviewed, so they were shortlisted along with two other vendors. Viv also consulted with an industry colleague in the finance sector whose business was using 2Shakes successfully and who highly recommended them.

“We started with a lot of investigative research into what we should do and which solution to go with” says Viv.  “At the time, there really weren’t a lot of options for real estate agencies – and I believe this was the case for many of the other entities affected too.  Platforms for onboarding new clients in response to the legislation were few and far between. Ideally, I wanted quotes from three suppliers so that we had comparisons”.

Choosing 2Shakes

Colliers provides a lot of support to its network of brokers in terms of equipment and systems and AML would be one of part of that so it had to be easy to use to get them onboard.

Says Viv “We needed to find a system that was going to work well for our business and our network of brokers, but most of all one that would ensure we complied with the new legislation”.

Viv continues “We chose the AML solution from 2Shakes as it was developed specifically for our sector – they were a one-stop-shop in terms of the total solution, support and business relationship.  Their AML product had good functionality and one of the easiest parts was onboarding a new client as the solution links directly to the NZ Companies Register. You receive all the necessary information quickly and easily with all the calculations done for you – so no manual labour was needed. The 2Shakes solution was much further developed than the other vendors and the team was very clued-up in responding to our needs – they understood our business well.  The implementation appeared straightforward and we’d easily be ready to roll and compliant by 1 January 2019”.

Implementing the solution…

The risks associated with not implementing a solution were high – leaving Colliers teams working manually which was time-consuming and also open to human error when doing calculations or not following correct CDD etc which could lead to non-compliance and ultimately, fines and brand reputational damage.

The solution was easy to set-up and use. 2Shakes was on-hand to help with anything that was needed.  Mike and Ata from 2Shakes worked closely to Viv to ensure that the implementation went to plan, walking her through all the functionality so that she could train the teams in-house. Colliers has used more and more functionality over time including trialling of biometric checking which is currently being considered for mandatory use by the business.

Viv says “We were up and running, ready to go on 1 January 2019 and from that date forward we don’t do business with anyone unless we’ve completed customer due diligence (CDD).  We have agency agreements between our client and their agent and no work can be carried out before the CDD is completed.  The solution assists in managing that process for us”.

Current state…

Colliers currently has six offices using the 2Shakes AML solution, each one has a regional AML officer who manages operations on a day-to-day basis together with Lauren Ward, the Wellington DBG AML Support Officer, alongside Viv readily available if any help is required.

“The fantastic thing about it is that its cloud-based, so I have access to all the regional offices so I can manage quality assurance, checking each client profile to approve it” says Viv. “Another key benefit is that all documentation received from our clients is sitting in the 2Shakes platform and not in our files, on our computers or in dropbox – that’s the beauty of the system”.

2Shakes has taken onboard feedback and suggestions from Colliers for solution development which has meant the product has evolved with the business which has impressed Viv.

No reason to change

“We have a great relationship with 2Shakes, the AML solution is perfect and they are the best support team we could ask for” concludes Viv.

Find out how 2Shakes can help your real estate business read more >

“We’re really pleased with the solution from 2Shakes – it’s worked out well for us and gives us peace of mind about being compliant.  We’ve got no reason to change” says Viv.  “We can easily submit our annual reports to the DIA and we would be more than confident that if we had to do a desk-based audit that we would pass with flying colours.  We had our annual audit completed by external auditor – who knows the 2Shakes solution which was great”.