On 8 February 2017, the Italian UNI Finance affiliated trade unions FABI, FIRST CISL, FISAC CGIL, UILCA, and UNISIN reached an agreement with the Italian Banking Association (ABI) on sales policies and work organisation. The agreement marks an important step in promoting the development of responsible and sustainable sales policies, in alignment with professional ethics, respect for the dignity of human resources and for the central role of customer needs.
The signing of this agreement is a successful achievement in light of the UNI Finance campaign “Sales vs Advice” launched in 2010.The agreement aims to promote concrete behaviors consistent with the above-mentioned principles, also via appropriate and specific activities on training and awareness raising, with the explicit goal of aligning any deviances to these values. The main elements of the national sectorial agreement are:
In defining sales policies, the banks will have to stick to general principles of investor protection, of transparency and clarity, which are compatible with and based on medium and long term strategies as well as work organisation which is consistent with the principles of sustainability and respect for the persons mentioned in the Agreement.
Any corporate communication on sales policy must be based on respect of the law, void of misleading messages or harassment of bank workers, and must be in compliance with the rules on work performance. This is also to impede, at various levels, improper conduct and undue pressure damaging to the dignity and professionalism of the workers, and to avoid abuse, as well as excessive and unnecessary duplication of commercial inquiries and assigned projects.
The agreement foresees that any failure to achieve commercial quantitative targets can neither provide the basis for a negative assessment of the work of an employee nor constitute grounds for disciplinary action.
In order to ensure the decentralised application and enforceability of the agreement, all ABI affiliated companies will organise meetings to define company-specific agreements on issues arising from this agreement or if there is an existing one, to assess any adjustments that might be necessary. Furthermore, at the company level where no such agreements exist, commissions or bilateral monitoring bodies will be established to examine the reports/complaints from workers via their company unions. All banks should have arrangements to inform the unions at company/group level on the adopted measures related to the subject of reported issues, in particular those aimed at the removal of behavior differing from the principles enshrined in the Agreement.
UNI Finance fully appreciates the massive efforts made by the Italian affiliated trade unions and agrees with their conviction that the agreement (in defining prevention practices, promoting the cultural dissemination for the respect of rules and its intention to overcome bad practices) can bring about a positive shift to the benefit of the banking sector and to the wider community in general.
The original Italian version (as well as translations into English, French and Spanish) of the press release as well as the national agreement can be found below in the related files section.