2019 Impact Report
During 2019 we remained focussed on creating positive impact, putting customer wellbeing at the centre of our business and supporting our staff to thrive. We continued to raise the bar for responsible banking in Australia, and to improve customer experience by investing in our people, systems and processes. We delivered important projects and we’re creating new ways of increasing the positive impact of our responsible banking activity.
From our impact report, you’ll get a clear picture of our performance and the impact we made in the period 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019, including measures of:
- our financial and cultural performance
- our creation of prosperity for our customers
- our support for people and their communities
- our contribution to making our planet healthy.
You can read more about our financial position and performance in the 2019 Financial Report here.
Investing your money in good, not harm
We believe that a truly responsible bank can make society better, and that where people and organisations put their money has a big impact on the world.
That’s why we embed our values into everything we do – from the loans we provide to the types of organisations we do business with. Our Responsible Banking Policy sets out how we put this into practice.
By choosing to bank with us, you can be confident that your money is working to create a positive impact.
We lend to:
- Individual customers for homes, cars and everyday living
- Community housing and specialist disability accommodation
- Better housing developments (sustainable, affordable, and community focussed)
- Community renewable energy
- Not-for-profit community organisations
We don’t lend to the:
- Fossil fuel sector
- Intensive animal farming and the live animal export industry
- Gambling industry
- Arms industry
- Tobacco industry
The sectors subject to inclusion and exclusion have been informed through customer research and engagement with key stakeholder groups.
The Responsible Banking Policy will be reviewed periodically with new inclusions and exclusions considered in line with customer feedback and stakeholder engagement.
We became the first bank to switch to renewable electricity
In May 2019 we became the first bank in the country to switch to 100% renewable electricity, one year ahead of our 2020 target.
We achieved this through a range of actions including:
- installing 88 solar panels on our head office in Melbourne
- installing 110 solar panels on our Contact Centre in Moe
- buying renewable electricity from Crowlands Wind Farm in Victoria as a member of the Melbourne Renewable Energy Project.
“Being the first bank in Australia to switch to 100% renewable electricity is a huge achievement for us,” said Damien Walsh, Managing Director.
“Our customers have told us they want to see clear action on climate change and we’re pleased to show how business can lead on climate action.”
Running on 100% renewable electricity means avoiding 780 tonnes of carbon emissions per year, which is the equivalent to taking 232 cars off the road.
Bank Australia is a member of RE100, a global business initiative of influential companies committed to 100% renewable power.
Jon Dee, RE100 Australia Coordinator, said, “As the first Australian member of RE100 to achieve a switch to 100% renewable electricity, Bank Australia has set a really positive example.”
Helping customers better access banking with dignity
Design for Dignity specialises in helping organisations to build inclusive design and dignified access for people with disabilities and improve existing products and services.
Bank Australia is working with Design for Dignity on all new branch designs and refits, ensuring that all customers are able to access our premises, products, and services in a safe, equitable, and dignified way.
Design for Dignity look at accessibility beyond compliance. This includes:
- independent access to premises, goods, and services
- access that doesn’t take longer or make anyone go further
- making people feel at ease, safe, certain, and connected.
For example, we worked with Design for Dignity to review the accessibility of our Canberra branch in late 2018 and implemented their recommendations on our website, shopping centre accessibility, signage, communications materials, and branch design. Branch design improvements included the installation of tactile building signage, increased instructional signage contrast, appropriate clearance around walkways and entrances, and choice of furniture were also incorporated into the design of our new branch at West End in Brisbane.
Upskilling our staff to support vulnerable customers
We partnered with Uniting Kildonan to develop and deliver vulnerable customer training for all staff at the bank.
The training focussed on helping our staff understand the different circumstances that create difficulties for our customers and what this means when providing banking services to them.
This is part of our ongoing commitment to financial inclusion, and meeting our commitment to the standards set by the Australian Banking Association Banking Code of Practice.
Bank Australia staff, across all areas of the bank, complete an online training module and our frontline staff undertake additional learning.
This year, 88 frontline staff have participated in face-to-face workshops with Uniting Kildonan and 95% of all staff have completed the online module.
We continue to work across all areas of the bank to ensure our guidelines and processes recognise and support vulnerability.
Want to know more about the impact of your money?
Download a copy of the report below: