News & Views

Royal Commission findings confirm need for cultural overhaul

The Global Compact Network Australia (GCNA) welcomes the findings of the Financial Services Royal Commission that confirm the need for an overhaul of culture and business practices within the industry to restore consumer trust and confidence.

GCNA Executive Director Kylie Porter said the findings highlight the work ahead for Australian corporates to improve their culture and business practices and confirm that the loss of consumer trust is bad for business.

“The findings from the Commissioner will undoubtedly benefit consumers going forward and promote more responsible business practices across the banking and financial services sector but this will require some difficult and ongoing conversations within the sector,” Ms Porter said.

“The GCNA is well positioned to engage with our existing members across business and academic and civil society organisations who can provide valuable insights into how the sector can be reformed to rebuild trust. We are also looking forward to working with the Federal Government and Opposition on developing a framework for ongoing improvements in the sector.”

Ethics, responsible business and social responsibility will be major topics for the corporate sector in 2019 according to Ms Porter.

“This is a conversation that needs to be aligned with the United Nations Global Compact 10 principles around anti-corruption, human rights, labour rights and the environment. When consumer confidence and trust is eroded, we know the result is bad for business,” she says.

The Royal Commission findings provide an opportunity for genuine reform in the sector and set an example for other industries, Ms Porter says.

“The recommendations actually provide a real opportunity for the financial services sector to take a lead and set an example for other industries to shift and reshape policies and practices to align with a culture of responsible business that put consumers first.

“The UN Global Compact provides a set of guiding principles for corporations to not only talk openly but act responsibly by aligning their practices to the UNGC’s 10 Principles. As the Australian UN Global Compact Network affiliate, we look forward to leading a discussion with our members to address the issues raised by the Royal Commission and assist in rebuilding consumer trust and confidence.”

Media spokesperson: GCNA Executive Director Kylie Porter: 0448 321 527