Guidelines to help banks serve customer needs launched

The New Zealand Bankers’ Association today launched guidelines to help banks serve customer needs.

“The guidelines are designed to help bank staff deliver good customer outcomes. They build on the banking industry’s work following the Bank Conduct and Culture Review in 2018. They also reflect the Financial Markets Authority’s expectation that banks will serve customer needs. It’s all about making sure we continue to do the right thing by our customers,” says New Zealand Bankers’ Association chief executive Roger Beaumont.

“Customers are at the heart of banking and it’s important for banks to be clear on how they can best meet their customers’ needs.

“The guidelines set out six commitments that banks make to their customers, and how they will meet those commitments.”

The guidelines outline how banks will:

  • Treat their customers fairly
  • Recognise and prioritise customer interests
  • Give customers clear, concise and effective information
  • Design and provide products that meet customer needs
  • Provide good customer care
  • Identify, fix and learn from their mistakes.

“These were all identified in the conduct and culture review as areas where banks could show they were prioritising their customers.

“We worked with our member banks to develop these guidelines. We also consulted the FMA. In working closely with these stakeholders, we think we’ve come up with practical guidance in clear language that will help banks continue to deliver the good customer outcomes we all expect today,” Beaumont says.

The Banking Ombudsman, Nicola Sladden, says “I see these guidelines as a positive step. They support banks to meet their obligations under the Code of Banking Practice, and achieve better outcomes for their customers.”

The new guidelines flow from the high level commitments banks make to their customers in the Code of Banking Practice, and are designed to sit with the guidelines to help banks meet the need of older and disabled customers published last year.

The guidelines to help banks serve customer needs are available here: