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Australia's RG 271 – How Regulatory Compliance Can Be the Foundation of CX Excellence

Australia's RG 271 – How Regulatory Compliance Can Be the Foundation of CX Excellence


Test Your RG 271 Compliance

Australia's RG 271 – How Regulatory Compliance Can Be the Foundation of CX Excellence

26 Jan 2021

Bharath Surapaneni
gavel and weight balance in front of Australian flag

We know that Australian financial services businesses, like yours, are working hard to meet the October 2021 deadline laid down by the Australian Security and Investments Commission’s RG 271 Internal Dispute Resolution (IDR) guidelines. The stringent new regulations are putting pressure on an already scrutinized part of your business, calling for swifter, more effective resolutions for all types of complaints.

It may be tempting to focus energies on achieving RG 271 compliance, but it’s crucial not to lose sight of the importance of customer experience (CX). You run the risk of alienating already disgruntled customers by adding extra layers of complexity as part of your compliance efforts.

Regulatory compliance and CX don’t need to be mutually exclusive: good compliance can inform good CX and vice versa. Compliance can be a great place to start if you haven’t taken steps to optimise your customer experience strategy.

The Compliance Baseline

Let’s start with resolution timescales. The new regulation mandates an IDR response to a standard complaint within 30 calendar days of receipt. This is simply too long for some of the less complex complaints, leading to already unhappy customers becoming even more dissatisfied. This 30-day rule should be the baseline from which to improve, representing the maximum time it might take to resolve a compliant, as opposed to a deadline to aim for.

Speed to resolution is not the only consideration. Quality customer outcomes should be the focus, with successful resolutions forming the basis of sustainable, long-term customer relationships. This is an area supported by compliance as well. RG 271 calls for the recording of every complaint, capturing every customer interaction no matter how it’s received.

This provides a good starting point for the business with optimizing CX. It’s not just complaints that should be recorded but all interactions. This enables the business to build up a comprehensive view of the customer. And it’s only with this comprehensive, single view of the customer that the organization can provide an informed, personalized and customer-appropriate response to the complaint.

In-Depth Insight

Accountability is another area where compliance sets the standard for good CX. Clear lines of accountability for complaint handling must be in place under the new regulatory guidelines. This includes the ways and means to identify and address any systemic issues. It’s vital that businesses uncover hidden systemic issues if they’re to take the necessary steps to resolve these problems. With the right processes in place, you can swiftly get to the root cause of a complaint.

Compliance reporting requirements go a long way to helping business development too. It’s now expected that financial services businesses will report on a wide variety of areas, including the number and nature of complaints received and complaint outcomes. Having in-depth reports into all of these areas highlights what works and what doesn’t, enabling you to make any changes necessary to products, processes and services to optimize performance.

Vulnerable customers

Customer vulnerability is another area where compliance can form the baseline for best practice. Businesses following RG 271 need to be able to identify any customers who need additional assistance, dealing with these customers accordingly. The duty of care to these vulnerable customers should be a top priority for financial services businesses. Those who treat vulnerable customers fairly are fulfilling their moral obligations while demonstrating their customer care credentials.

Compliance needs to be a part of everyday processes and procedures, but not at the expense of good customer experience. While compliance is a necessary part of working in the financial services sector, it’s enhanced CX that will provide the long-term competitive advantage. Financial services organisations should consider compliance an enabler of best practice, putting in place the solid foundations on which to build CX excellence. With this approach, financial services businesses can ensure they satisfy the strictest of compliance requirements while building valuable, long-term customer relationships.

For more information on how Aptean can help ensure your organization is RG 271 compliant, use our free online RG 271 Compliance Calculator.

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