We love to hear from our customers whether it's a complaint or compliment. It is important for us to know what we do well, and we are just as keen to hear when we have not met our customer's expectations no matter the circumstance.
This policy provides an outline of how our staff will handle customer feedback which includes complaints or compliments.
Our vision is to be Australia’s bank of choice. At Bendigo and Adelaide Bank we focus on building and improving the prospects of our customers, communities and partners in order to develop sustainable earnings and growth for our business.
We are committed to exceeding customer expectations and delivering quality customer service on every occasion. We do this by listening and responding and respecting every customer's choice, needs and objectives.
We consider Internal Dispute Resolution (IDR) to be an important and necessary first step in the complaint handling process. It gives the Group the opportunity to hear when we do not meet our customers' expectations and address them genuinely, efficiently and effectively. Addressing IDR complaints in this way can also assist in improving business systems and products or services, which is integral to growing a successful business.
Further, the Banking Code of Practice 2020 (the Code) sets out the standards of practice and service in the Australian banking industry for individual and small business customers, and their guarantors. The Group is a signatory to the Code and by doing so, the Group has made a commitment to our customers to engage in ethical behaviour, to fair and responsible lending practices and to the protection of their privacy.
This policy forms part of the Group's broader regulatory compliance obligations.
Scope of Policy
This policy applies to the whole of the Group.
The Office of the Customer Advocate has developed this policy with the assistance of senior management and staff.
The Group is always keen to find out ways to improve its customer service.
If customers have any complaints or compliments any of our staff can assist with the feedback. They will be objective and proactive in responding to our customers to achieve fair, reasonable and timely outcomes.
We will ensure that all complaints are acknowledged, thoroughly assessed and investigated, and an IDR written response provided, where appropriate, as prescribed in the Australian Securities and Investments Commissions (ASIC) Regulatory Guide (RG 271).
There are many ways a customer can provide their feedback to us with each. See below for customers/members to view information on their brand’s website customer feedback pages.
- Adelaide Bank customers
- AWA Alliance Bank members
- Bendigo Bank customers
- Bendigo Superannuation customers
- Leveraged customers
- Rural Bank customers
- Sandhurst Trustees customers
If however a customer is not satisfied with the outcome of a complaint, our Customer Feedback Team is able to assist.
The Customer Feedback Team is accessible to all customers of the Group, inclusive of all our brands. The Customer Feedback Team can provide options to assist customers who might need additional assistance to lodge a complaint, dependent on their personal circumstance and/or vulnerability. For example: Ensuring the IDR process is easy to understand and use, including by people with disability or language difficulties, also offering the National Relay Service (NRS) and Text Telephone (TTY) if applicable.
Our dedicated Customer Feedback Team is here to listen to our customers and represent their voice.
The Customer Feedback Team will seek to understand our customers’ expectations and needs by engaging with them. Their learnings from our customers’ experience will be used to enhance the way we do business in the future.
External Dispute Resolution Scheme (EDR)
Each Group entity that holds an Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) or Australian Credit Licence or is otherwise required to maintain a membership with an ASIC approved EDR Scheme, will remain members of the external dispute resolution scheme that cover complaints made about us.
If the customer is not satisfied with the response provided, they have the option of referring the matter to the Group's EDR Scheme - the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA).
If the complaint relates to how we handle a customer’s personal information they can also contact:
Standard complaint resolution timeframes are no later than 30 days after receiving the complaint. This will not include complaints that sit outside the standard complaint resolution process.
Example: credit related complaints involving hardship and/or default notices (21 days), superannuation (45 days), superannuation about death benefit distributions (90 days) traditional trustee company (45 days).
IDR Notification Delay
If we can’t resolve a complaint within the maximum timeframes, we will provide the customer with an ‘IDR delay notification’ that informs (a) the reasons for the delay; (b) their right to complain to AFCA if they are dissatisfied; and (c) the contact details for AFCA.
The Customer Advocate's role is to be a voice of the customer within the Group helping to drive fairer dispute resolution outcomes, with a particular focus on sensitive and complex cases. The Customer Advocate will endeavour to make things easier for our customers by helping to facilitate fair outcomes and minimising the likelihood of future problems.
Our Customer Advocate will review key customer themes to identify thematic opportunities, as well as identifying systemic issues, to enhance products, services, systems and processes within the bank. This may involve shaping or overseeing remediation programs, influencing product development and distribution processes or engaging in preventive risk management initiatives.
Our Customer Advocate reports to the Chief of Staff of the Managing Director’s Office as well as having regular access to the Managing Director, other members of the senior executive, the Board and/or relevant Board sub-committees to provide insights into customer perspectives and recommendations for improvement.
Customer facing staff
Customer facing staff will be familiar with this policy and will remain the first point of contact for all initial customer feedback, ensuring it is recorded in the appropriate complaints register. These staff will assist customers to address their feedback and provide a fair resolution.
An expression of dissatisfaction made to or about an organization, related to its products, services, staff or the handling of a complaint, where a response or resolution is explicitly or implicitly expected or legally required.
A customer can be defined as an account holder, a shareholder or anyone interacting or seeking to interact with us.
Includes complaints and compliments.
Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Limited and its related bodies corporate.
This Policy will be reviewed every two years by Customer Advocate Office in conjunction with Group Operational Risk or sooner if required.