NAB has today announced a new specialist team of bankers dedicated to recognising and responding to signs a customer is experiencing vulnerability.
NAB Chief Legal and Commercial Counsel Sharon Cook said the bank established the NAB Customer Support Hub to help detect the early stages of financial hardship, from scams to fraud, domestic and family violence, elder abuse, low financial literacy and gambling addiction.
“We want to be there for our customers no matter their circumstances and this new team of bankers provides support well beyond that of traditional financial hardship assistance,” Mrs Cook said.
“Every year we assist 1.4 million customers experiencing financial difficulty due to events such as injury, illness and unemployment.
“This Support Hub enables us to be more proactive by identifying hurdles our customers are experiencing and providing them with extra care.”
Mrs Cook said the Support Hub was recently expanded after a successful trial in June that helped more than 500 customers.
“By referring customers to community partners, we have been able to provide much needed assistance to those experiencing elder and financial abuse, mental illness and credit card debt,” Mrs Cook said.
“We have also, at the request of customers, applied restrictions on gambling transactions on credit or debit cards that prevents them going further into debt.
“We have also set up a dedicated Indigenous Customer Service Line for our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander customers living in remote locations, which is making a huge difference to how they access banking services.”
The creation of the Support Hub is one of the actions NAB has taken in developing a new Customer Vulnerability Framework, which creates more inclusive banking services and better support for our customers in hard times. This framework sets out how NAB will:
- help older customers;
- make banking easier for customers experiencing vulnerability;
- design more inclusive products and services; and
- build the capacity of all our employees to provide better support.
“The simpler and more inclusive we can make the process of managing the financial impacts associated with vulnerability, the lighter the load for our customers,” Mrs Cook said.
“We encourage customers to call our NAB Customer Support team on 1300 308 175 from 8am to 5pm (AEST) Monday to Friday.”