How Westpac Is Spending $458 Million On IT-Driven Improvements

How Westpac Is Spending $458 Million On IT-Driven Improvements
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Westpac’s half-yearly results outline how it has been spending money on IT over the last six months. Even though it is no longer stressing over Windows XP, there’s still a lot of money going out the door.

Bank picture from Shutterstock

As with any bank, it’s hard to entirely disentangle Westpac’s technology spend as a single figure. For instance, its “other expenses” category includes an $18 million increase due to “increased technology costs” compared to the previous half.

However, the most relevant figure is the overall investment spend, which is $458 million. Of this, $233 million went on growth and productivity initiatives (heavily driven by technology); $108 million on regulatory change (also influenced by technology) and $117 million on technology change. That last figure includes continued data centre consolidation; Westpac shut a further two data centres during that six-month period.

Westpac says that all 3.1 million of its consumer banking customers are now on its Westpac Live platform. 300,000 business banking customers have moved, remind us again that big migration projects take a long time. Its video conferencing technology is now in 249 branches.

In a year-on-year comparison, software amortisation costs were up $61 million, and “other expenses” were up $67 million (7%) due to “outsourced technology costs”. Outsourcing not being cheaper? Say it ain’t so! (Except it very often is.)


  • They did finally release a mobile banking app for Windows Phone last week, I was pretty surprised to see it, and even more surprised when the app actually worked

  • It would be nice if they updated their Android app to support tap and pay. Currently you have to have a Samsung device because they have some sort of deal with them.

    Their banking app description has a couple of lies about why it can’t be on other platforms. Pretty poor.

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