1 March 2006
‘BNZ by a nose’ in race to be worst company
Judges of the annual Roger Awards, which recognise the worst-behaved transnational company in New Zealand, announce their decision on March 6. This year the finalists include two Australian-owned banks, BNZ and Westpac. Finsec, the union representing finance sector workers, is embarrassed that a quarter of the finalists are banks.
“It would be better for our members, and the wider public if there weren’t any banks involved in this competition, but sadly, both BNZ and Westpac are worthy finalists.” Said Finsec Communications Organiser, Stephen Day.
“It’s hard to separate the two banks but this year we believe that BNZ should be favourites to take the title. What distinguishes BNZ from the other seven finalists however is its arrogant attitude to staff and the public. This is most clearly exemplified by their memo to staff just before Christmas encouraging staff to use the opportunities provided during the holiday season to sell debt products to their friends and family. Just when New Zealand needs less debt, BNZ expects its employees to sell mortgages and credit cards to their nephews over the family barbeque.”
Finsec members say stress is widespread among workers in the BNZ because of serious understaffing and unreasonable demands placed upon those staff in the form of sales targets. This is creating an ethical dilemma for staff who are pressured to encourage customers into debt or to buy more banking products so that staff can reach their targets.