AFCA launches new platform to improve dispute resolution 

From

David Locke

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) has launched a new digital platform to help financial firms better manage disputes that reach the ombudsman service.

The new AFCA Member Benchmarking Dashboard is an interactive platform for financial firms that provides near real-time complaints data – updated daily – and gives individual firms a greater understanding of their complaints, including how quickly they are being resolved. It also enables firms to compare their performance against an anonymised set of similar financial firms.

AFCA CEO and Chief Ombudsman David Locke said the dashboard is a significant milestone and will ultimately help financial firms reduce customer complaints.

“Using the new dashboard, AFCA members can investigate the types of complaints they receive, how well they respond to disputes, and how their performance compares to other firms in their industry,” Mr. Locke said.

“By providing members with greater data and insights, we hope to help financial firms improve customer service and minimise disputes.”

Mr. Locke said AFCA has an important role to play not just in handling complaints that are escalated to the ombudsman service, but also in improving industry practice.

“As an external dispute resolution provider, AFCA’s primary role is to resolve complaints. However, we also have a responsibility to encourage best practice, so firms receive fewer complaints in the first place.”

While the new tool is only available to member firms, AFCA also provides insights into complaints through its free and public AFCA Datacube[1], which is updated twice a year.

The new dashboard was announced last week at AFCA’s bi-annual Member Forum – a two-day virtual event for AFCA members to hear directly from AFCA decision makers about complaints trends and dispute resolution case studies. The dashboard will be released to AFCA members in phases during November and December.

As well as a special data and analytics session, the November forum includes industry sessions for Banking and Finance, General and Life Insurance, Superannuation, Small Business and Investments and Advice.

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[1] https://australianfinancialcomplaintsauthority.cmail20.com/t/d-l-aijllx-tutyntyyk-r/

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