Everybody seem to have a story about their bank – and they tend not to be good.
But Australia’s big banks say they have listened to their customers frustrations and are undertaking a suite of measures to address their concerns.
The Better Banking program is the result of research conducted in 2016 into what customers like and don’t like about banking.
“We’ve heard our customers, and we’re taking action,” Australian Bankers’ Association Chief Executive Steven Munchenberg said in a statement on Sunday.
It includes a $1 billion investment in a new payment system to allow “real time” payments and transfer, overcoming delays when money is transferred from one account to another.
It makes a renewed commitment to support customers in financial difficulty, introducing financial hardship support programs and working with financial counsellors to help set-up a new debt repayment service for people to manage multiple debts.
Farmers and small business can also expect more support from their bank, including developing financial literacy resources and tools to help grow their entities.
The banks will also be holding a roundtable with consumer groups and government representatives in March to help customers better understand how they can switch accounts and how it can be made easier.
“Our focus is on our customers and ensuring as an industry we provide the right service and right products to meet their needs,” ABA chairman and chief executive of National Australia Bank Andrew Thorburn said.