It is the first time the lender has had a broker salesforce and is part of a strategy which will see Nationwide replace its online front-end system next year and make its systems more intermediary-friendly.
Group executive director Matthew Wyles says the firm is confident in making the investment despite the current state of the mortgage market.
He says its 48 business development managers were recruited from a wide mix of rival lenders but a substantial number came from Northern Rock.
Each of the BDMs will be supported by a sales support adviser who will handle queries and troubleshoot problems when BDMs are unavailable.
Wyles says: “The establishment of the SSAs is something that I do not think is general practice in the market. The credit crunch has meant we have been able to hire super-high-quality BDMs and it has been easier to get hold of them.”
The salesforce will be led by head of sales Ian Andrew who joined from Northern Rock last year.
Wyles says: “This is about establishing Nationwide in the minds of the intermediaries. We know we have to be price-competitive but we also want brokers to know about the other benefits of working with Nationwide.”