Professional Development Functions: The Australasian Institute of Banking and Finance Provides Members with Networking, Educational, Training and Information Opportunities

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March 2004 member survey results

Thank you to all our members who responded to the March 2004 membership survey, conducted by Beaton Consulting on the AIBF's behalf.

More than 1100 AIBF members in Australia and New Zealand responded to the survey, a 23 per cent response rate. The survey, part of a larger market study, provided valuable feedback to the institute.

The institute continually reviews its offering to members and tries to enhance the services and benefits available, not only in terms of discounts on products and services but wider offerings.

As the institute is Australasian, it is difficult to be all things to all people, especially when most of our members and industry head offices are located in central business districts. The institute is looking to provide a broader spectrum of services to a wider audience, especially to our regional members.

Regional events have been offered in New Zealand's south island for quite some time. Regional-focused offerings have also commenced in Australia, with events being now offered in NSW's Hunter Valley.

Survey results

The results were consistent with the 2001 survey. The key findings were:

What are the main reasons for becoming a member and what am the AIBF's strengths?

* To keep up to date with developments (75 per cent of respondents)

* To support the development of my knowledge/skills (61 per cent)

* To gain membership status and recognition (60 per cent)

In which specific ways, if any, do you think the AIBF could improve or lift its game?

* 20 per cent made professional development function suggestions

* 16.5 per cent voiced regional issues

* 8 per cent raised the B+FS journal's contents

* 7.8 per cent provided membership recommendations

* 7.1 per cent raised AIBF brand issues

* 6.5 per cent commented on communication / industry knowledge

* 6.4 per cent recommended training options

* 6 per cent wanted more career management involvement

* 4.5 per cent raised issues around the AIBF's operations

* 3 per cent voiced issues relating to industry support

* 1.5 per cent discussed young finance professional issues; and

* 12.7 per cent provided general comments.

Detailed feedback

The overall feedback provided suggestions including:

* Profile building with executives to obtain the support of the banking industry

* Is there any scope to hook up with a tailored executive MBA program, which has a finance and/or banking component?

* Can we develop an ongoing professional development program that gives the profession similar status as, say, a CPA or chartered accounting

* Provide basic training courses into banking and finance for non-banking and finance professionals such as technology, communications and human resources people. Often these people have no idea how the industry or the financial institution works. I do not see anyone providing this service in the market

* Consider forums or the like for regional based members

* There could be some forums pitched specifically at more junior level members

* Greater choice of training workshops

* More informative discussions by way of a forum or seminar on current banking trends and policies, on lending for example

* Greater corporate finance focus to broaden away from traditional banking-oriented base

* Producing email alerts for new developments within the financial institution sector

* Include a positions vacant section in journal and/or website

* Provide some form of employee counselling services in regards to employee retrenchments, job loss, etc

* Provide a forum for employment opportunities

* Conduct further surveys of members to determine which training courses would be most useful to members

* Greater emphasis on technical matters and relevant training

* Include more regular features on technology issues, trends, and probably project management issues

* The AIBF site could have more professional information for bankers

* Better, more informative and accessible website

* Stricter rules to becoming a member

* AIBF has provided a platform to enhance ones knowledge of banking and finance with its publications and access to information. …