AFSA and BETA partner on research to improve PPSR registrations

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Since 2012, there have been more than 20 million registrations created on the Personal Property Securities Register (PPSR). A registration on the PPSR can offer businesses excellent risk protection. However, registrations can be invalid if they are not exactly correct, exposing businesses to financial risk.

Last year, the Australian Financial Security Authority (AFSA) commissioned research from BETA – the Australian Government’s behavioural economics team – to better understand why some businesses create inaccurate PPSR registrations.

Previous market research by AFSA has only reflected the stated preferences of PPSR users – BETA have been able to take this a step further. 

BETA use behavioural insights, science and psychology to improve government services and policy outcomes. BETA’s work applies behavioural economics concepts in the real world, recognising the gap between what people intend to do, and what they actually do.  

In 2019, BETA analysed 2.7 million registrations on the PPSR, and interviewed users, small and large businesses, advisors and AFSA staff.

BETA’s analysis found that around 2 per cent of registrations contained obvious errors, and a further 10 per cent contained possible errors. A series of interviews with PPSR users and advisors also found that there was a clear difference in how regular and new users of the PPSR approached registrations.

The report has made a series of recommendations to help improve the PPSR registration process – including simplifying the language used in the registration form, creating templates to help users with problem areas, introducing further self-help options and more.

The report, titled Applying behavioural insights to the Personal Property Securities Register, is now available on the BETA website at behaviouraleconomics.pmc.gov.au.

We will work closely with BETA over the coming months to consider how to implement recommendations without negatively impacting our regular users.

We look forward to making improvements to the PPSR in 2020 and beyond.