After six years of development by expert volunteers, thousands of hours of refinement and industry review, over 120 questions, 12 benchmarks and 9 focus areas, the FISA Self-Assessment is now ready to support New Zealand financial entities to assess and improve their integrity systems. It will be launched by Transparency International New Zealand on October 18 2022 and be open until the end of February 2023. Its use will demonstrate how civil society and business can work together to strengthen the integrity of our financial system.
The self assessment tool will be free and open for use by financial organisations until February 2023. It provides a framework for continuous improvement of the culture and conduct in the financial sector – banks, finance companies, KiwiSaver providers, credit unions, building societies, insurance companies and related financial institutions such as trust companies and fund managers.
The tool includes nine focus areas: governance, accountability, policy oversight, communications, human capital, customer services, risk monitoring, operations and procurement. Benchmark questions are included in each section. Questions are self-scored, with responses verified against publicly available information. The tool identifies best practice behaviours (the benchmarks) and then scores the organisation against that benchmark.
It assists financial organisations to examine how well they implement integrity practices that shape and strengthen culture and conduct across organisations — and how they can improve further. If proactively applied, these practices contribute to the prevention of corruption, enhance the mana of the organisation and nurture trust with consumers and stakeholders. This also makes them more attractive to responsible investors. All of this is good for business.
On completion of the assessment each participating organisation will receive an automated report on their benchmark performance and a copy of their scored answers. Over time participants will be able to see their performance against other (aggregated, anonymised) organisations in industry cohorts. Organisations wanting to participate will need to provide evidence of authorisation to receive the link.
The tool is held in a secure database. TINZ will not publish individual organisation results. TINZ will only receive and report publicly on aggregated anonymized data. Data provided by respondents is subject to strict security standards including US–EU Safe Harbour and SSAE16/SOC-2 certification.
Go-live events are being planned, for 18 October. Keep an eye on the TINZ facebook page to find out about those. https://www.facebook.com/TINZ.org/