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Connexus : Issue 40
The itch to switch Australians are voting with their feet – they won’t accept a raw deal from their financial institutions. For too long a strong level of consumer sentiment for a better deal hasn’t been matched by the same amount of action. Switching has been seen as too hard or not worth the effort. July 1 or Super Sunday marked an opportunity and a challenge to the financial services industry. The ‘tick and flick’ reforms put all institutions on notice: live up to consumer expectations or risk losing customers. Our credit unions, building societies and mutual banks have recorded sustained high customer satisfaction ratings over the long term. That doesn’t mean we’ll rest on our laurels, but research shows our customers are more than happy to stick with us – the challenge is to get their friends and family to become customers too. We are well placed to attract those interested in switching. Our recent specially commissioned Roy Morgan research shows that Australians will consider switching, and more so now that some of the red tape has been removed. To be successful, we all need to be aware of the changes and what is required when new customers ‘knock on our doors’. You can learn more in this edition about the potential of account switching including an exclusive video of six CEOs giving their views in the Connexus iPad edition. The iPad version received some encouraging feedback on its first outing. As you’ve seen in the last month, with changes to the media landscape at major news organisations, building a digital audience is increasingly important. Abacus continues to make important progress with its number one policy focus – effective implementation of Basel III in the mutual sector. APRA has released draft reporting standards and a discussion paper on implementation of Basel III capital reforms. Abacus continues to clearly present its case to APRA about the particular recognition of the mutuals sector required to ensure we continue to present an ongoing, competitive and vibrant alternative to the major banks. We have signed a new partnership with the Women on Boards organisation. Abacus is now a Corporate Subscriber, which will allow our industry some exciting professional development and leadership opportunities over the next 12 months. Our session at the CEO and Director Forum on workplace diversity was lively and robust and it’s covered in detail here in Connexus. Registrations for Mutuals 2012, the Abacus AM Institute Convention, are now open. We’ve assembled a really strong list of speakers that will engage, entertain and provide thought-provoking ways of doing business. More information about Convention is in these pages, including details of the Emerging Leader Program. Our Fraud and Financial Crimes area has done some terrific work building up our knowledge base across a growing community of fraud specialists across the membership. This was never more evident than at the recent Fraud and Financial Crimes Symposium. In this edition of Connexus, you can learn more about the collaborative efforts to fight scams and ensure our institutions stay alert to the growing problem of cyber crime. We also look in more detail at the continued good work of CUFA in developing countries. We get a ‘fly on the wall account’ of Kevin Buckley’s experience in the CUFA Leadership Challenge in Fiji, which provides a real sense of the positive on the ground difference CUFA is making, supported by the enthusiasm and drive of people like Kevin. I hope you enjoy the latest Connexus. louise Petschler, CEO, Abacus CEO comment Research shows our customers are more than happy to stick with us – the challenge is to get their friends and family to become customers too. www.abacus.org.au 7