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Our Approach - Putting Our Customers First

We continue to invest in measures to ensure our customers receive simple, convenient and responsible products and services and our lending and investment decisions are guided by sound social and environmental standards.

WHERE WE'VE BEEN 1999-2006 KEY ACHIEVEMENTS 2007 FUTURE PRIORITIES

  • Customer Charter released in 2001
  • Simple personal banking accounts and fee-free account for low-income customers
  • Customer satisfaction moves from 60% in 1999 to 75.5% in 2006
  • Developed framework to assess social and environmental risk in lending
  • Adopted the Equator Principles
  • Maintained highest customer satisfaction of four major banks at 77.2%
  • Opened 79 new branches since 2004 and installed 400 new ATMs
  • Consumer hardship policies reviewed and new Exception Fee Policies introduced
  • Implementation of the Equator Principles
  • Improve our customer satisfaction rating
  • Build our position as Australia's most convenient bank
  • Continued focus on supporting customers in financial difficulty
  • Review of Customer Charter
  • Development of Institutional social and environmental policies

Our Customer Charter spells out our commitment to simple, convenient and responsible retail banking. We are developing a similar approach in our Institutional business to respond to the growing social and environmental issues facing our clients.

We introduced our Customer Charter in 2001, a time when the banking industry was rebuilding the trust of customers which had eroded due to rural branch closures, increasingly complex products and a decline in customer service. The Customer Charter was a statement that we needed to do better and, by establishing a set of clear and measurable commitments, we set a course for us to improve our service to customers.

The Customer Charter is a living document that adapts to changing circumstances and customer needs. In 2005, we added promises to protect certain low-income customers from unsolicited credit card offers, as well as a commitment to respond to growing customer demand for extended branch opening hours. The Charter will be reviewed again in 2008 to ensure we focus on, and remain accountable for, the issues that are most important to our retail customers.

We are also seeing the value of a transparent commitment to public standards in our Institutional business. New and complex social and environmental issues pose risks to us and our customers. We are more likely to successfully manage the expectations of staff, customers, shareholders, governments, and non-government organisations (NGOs) if the process and guiding principles for our decisions are clear. This can also help our clients understand how they can further improve their practices, especially those in countries with developing legal frameworks.

Source: Roy Morgan Research - Aust MFI Pop'n aged 14+, % Satisfied (Very or Fairly Satisfied), 6 mth moving average