The principal and founder of Astute Ability Finance Group, Mhairi MacLeod, has renewed her call for further adoption of corporate social responsibility in the finance industry.
Ms MacLeod, who recently launched a tool to assist companies to manage, track and measure their charitable initiatives, outlined that an increasing proportion of young adults are looking to align themselves with businesses that have strong corporate social responsibility (CSR).
As such, Astute Ability Finance Group has now begun offering mortgage customers the option of choosing their preferred loan provider based on its efforts in sustainability, diversity and charitable donations.
“Generation Z cares deeply about sustainability, society and preserving the planet, and will certainly think twice about taking a cheap deal if the company behind it still dumps its plastic into the ocean,” Ms MacLeod said.
“As a brokerage with CSR at its heart and soul, all our new mortgage customers will be asked whether a mortgage solution from a socially responsible bank is important to them and if so, we will find options that match their own values.”
Ms MacLeod noted that two Australian banks, Bank Australia and Teachers Mutual Bank Ltd, have now had their mortgage and deposit products certified as responsible by the Responsible Investment Association Australasia, while ME Bank has said that it will not invest in fossil fuels, coal mining, coal ports, coal power, gas power, arms trade, tobacco or liquid natural gas plants.
Ms MacLeod concluded: “The financial services industry needs to address the shifting landscape, especially in light of the Hayne royal commission, and to embrace corporate social responsibility in order to ensure its future.
“Everyone right now finds themselves needing to be more responsible. The results of the royal commission mean we’re first and foremost looking for good customer outcomes, and we have to start looking at corporate social responsibility on all levels,” she said.