OnDeck COO recognised for impactful leadership

This follows the SME lender's Best Place to Work win

OnDeck COO recognised for impactful leadership

OnDeck Australia COO Charlene Batson (pictured above) has been honoured with the Affie Award for Impactful Leadership at the recent Australian Finance Industry Association awards.

The accolade was presented during the AFIA’s annual conference in Sydney, with long-time Ten newsreader Sandra Sully doing the honours.

The “Affies” celebrate people and organisations that have made significant contributions to the finance sector, recognising leaders who have played a pivotal role in shaping the future of finance in Australia.

“Winning this award holds significant personal value for me, but it also symbolizes the remarkable journey our business has undertaken over the past three years, and the exceptional talent within OnDeck Australia,” Batson said.

This recognition comes on the heels of OnDeck Australia being named by WRK+ as Australia’s #1 Best Place to Work 2023 for businesses with fewer than 100 employees, based on an employee survey score and a comprehensive culture audit.

“There is no greater reward than witnessing individuals unlock their full career potential, and I am thankful for the opportunity to help empower our team and be able to nurture female talent working in the finance and technology sectors,” Batson said. “When you remain authentic and have the support of the right people, the possibilities are limitless.”

Batson’s impactful leadership at OnDeck has been demonstrated by two significant initiatives: the implementation of automation processes and the establishment of a transformative workplace culture program. These initiatives have brought about positive change for OnDeck’s customers and employees.

Batson ”has championed a multi-year automation project that is enhancing efficiency and speed for our customers and broker partners,” OnDeck Australia CEO Cameron Poolman said. “The results speak for themselves, as we have witnessed a remarkable reduction in lending decision timeframes.

Under Batson’s leadership, the decision-making process at OnDeck has been accelerated from several hours to less than an hour, with some applications taking as little as 30 minutes. This streamlined process has significantly improved the customer experience while maintaining the integrity of credit decisions.

Batson also played a pivotal role in reshaping OnDeck’s organisational identity, particularly in the local buyout of OnDeck Australia in 2022. This strategic move paved the way for recruiting and developing global talent, with Batson establishing a data analytics division.

“Batson has demonstrated unwavering leadership in reevaluating our vision, mission, and purpose, setting clear expectations and shared goals from the leadership to each team and every individual employee,” Poolman said.

“The effectiveness of Ms Batson’s leadership is demonstrated with 95% of the OnDeck team stating, ‘I can clearly see the impact between my goals and the business success’, up from 80% in the 2021 Best Places to Work survey results.”

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