Westpac Help for Seniors.

(From Tania – Extra Care Programme Lead)

We hope you are safe and well during these uncertain times.

We wanted to take this opportunity to check in with you to let you know that we are here to help should you need support, or to let us know about any needs your community may have. Our contact details can be found at the bottom of the email.

We have outlined below some of the different ways to bank with us.Getting in touch with our team.

We have a number of ways in which customers can manage their everyday banking needs. Westpac staff are happy to guide you through any technology that you might be interested in learning about, either in person or over the phone. We offer Special Phone Assistance. This means customers aged over 65 who call our contact centre will be directed to a priority queue. Our contact centres are located in New Zealand and can be reached seven days a week on 0800 400 600. Any customer with questions about cheques can also call our dedicated cheque line on 0800 808 004. Ways to bank. Westpac One® online banking. Customers can use Westpac One online banking to bank from their phone or computer safely and securely any time. They can call 0800 400 600 (option 7) for help setting this up, or to book a time to come into branch for a staff member to help them in person. We also have WiFi in branch they can use while we show them the ropes.

 Customers can use our demo site to practice transferring money and making payments, to build up confidence in their online banking ability. We have also teamed up with former broadcaster Judy Bailey to explain the benefits of online banking. Learn how to bank online – Westpac NZ 

We also partner up with SeniorNet to offer face-to-face online banking workshops throughout the country and we’ve worked with them to help develop the content for this. You can find out more at SeniorNet.

Automated phone banking. This is a good option for those who don’t have internet access or who are unsure about online banking. Using a landline or mobile phone, customers can pay bills, transfer funds, get a balance and much more. Customers can call 0800 400 600 (option 7) for help setting this up, or to book a time to come into branch for a staff member to help them in person. Some transactions including depositing and withdrawing money can be done either at ATMs or over the counter in-branch. You can also pay bills at Smart ATMs. Our branch staff undergo regular training to recognise and help customers who may require extra care.

 A reduced number of branches are open in Auckland for essential banking services only at Alert Level 3. Branches outside of Auckland are open as normal, but we ask customers to please stay home if they’re feeling unwell. You can visit https://www.westpac.co.nz/about-us/covid-19/ to find out more.

 Accounts with individual signing rule. Customers who help others manage their money can arrange to open a separate account with an individual signing rule. The caregiver can transfer limited funds into the account for the account owner to access via Westpac One or EFTPOS/debit card. This allows the account owner to retain their freedom and independence whilst ensuring their funds are secure.

 Other ways to make payments. Automatic payments. This is great for regular transactions in which the payment amounts stay the same, such as rent. Customers who may forget about ongoing payment arrangements, or are sight, cognitive or hearing impaired, might find this option useful. They can be managed via online banking phone banking or through a branch. Direct debit. This is useful for making payments whose amounts vary, like power bills or phone bills. Customers need to speak to the companies they pay about setting up a direct debit. The companies are obliged to advise customers of the amount the customer will pay via direct debit before it’s processed. Other support for customers who need extra care 

  1. Customers who are deaf or hard of hearing can have a Westpac staff member book them a face-to-face appointment with an iSign Sign Language interpreter. Ask about this in-branch.
  2. We can support customers with hearing or speech impairments over the phone using NZ Relay services.
  3. Customers can organise a call back from a staff member who speaks the customer’s language. Ask a Westpac staff member about this.
  4. Our website www.westpac.co.nz is designed for simple flow of information, high contrast fonts and to be screen reader friendly.
  5. The majority of our ATMs are wheelchair accessible, meaning the ’5’ key sits between 900-1200mm from the ground.
  6. Sight-impaired customers have access to two features on all our ATMs. For making withdrawals we have talking ATMs – earphones can be plugged in to the machine. And all ATMs also have a raised centre ‘pip’ on the ‘5’ key, ‘X’ on cancel and ‘O’ on the OK/green button.
  7. The vast majority of user interactions use onscreen icons which are 380 x 80 pixels with 60px bold font.
  8. Customers can set up text or email reminders through Westpac One online banking when their account balances go over/under a certain amount, or when a planned payment fails.
  9. Our contact centre is open 7 days a week, 7am-8pm on weekdays and 8am-5pm on weekends. We can be reached on 0800 400 600.
  10. We have an Extra Care flag that can be loaded onto a customer profile that ensures they are provided with extra care in every interaction. Customers can talk to us in branch or on 0800 400 600 about this.
  11. For customers that require support with their banking and have a two-to-sign arrangement in place we have an alternative option available. Ask a Westpac staff member about this.
  12. Westpac is NZ’s first dementia-friendly bank and we have specially trained staff that can help customers plan ahead, access financial services, and remain independent for as long as possible.

 We are here to help you if you’d like any further information needed to support your community. You can email us at this email address extracareprogramme@westpac.co.nz or contact us on our telephone numbers below. Thanks for your time. Ngā mihi nuiLouisa Brock and Tania Reed 

Tania Reed Extra Care Programme Lead

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