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Cracking the code: Living out The BACB Way

Posted on 04/06/2018

BACB Together

By Helen Curtis

At BACB, we’re not waiting around for regulators to spell out precisely to the letter what a good code of conduct and culture looks like. We’ll always work closely with the FCA and other regulatory bodies and welcome their guidance. Indeed, as the ramifications of the financial crisis are still being dealt with, conduct and culture is an area we can expect to hear more from them this year. However, at BACB we pride ourselves on our teamwork and ability to work together to a common set of goals and principles, and that’s why we launched The BACB Way last year

Implementing the code

Having a ‘code' laid down in front of you can make for easy reading. But what matters most is how it is implemented. If people merely look at some text and then carry on as they were, nothing has been achieved. We are working to ensure that all staff at BACB know and understand The BACB Way, live and breathe the code, and share the responsibility it requires of us.

Tone at the top

It all begins at the top. Our senior leadership team have all signed The BACB Way, committing to the code of conduct and culture, showing everyone within the bank that they will take responsibility for the bank's actions, and will be held accountable. Following this, all employees went on to sign The BACB Way and have committed to their individual responsibilities.

Individual support 

Learning and development (L&D) is an essential part of life at the bank. We have a great deal of diversity at BACB; we have employees of all ages, races and cultures, and we have staff who have been with us for decades to those who are just starting out. To bring all of these people together under one culture requires a structured and considered L&D programme.

The BACB Way gives us direction for this programme, but it is the documentation, the appraisal processes, the training we offer that will ensure it is lived out. We are in the process of updating all of our procedures so that The BACB Way becomes a red thread that permeates throughout the bank. We are not getting rid of what existed before; we are simply improving it.

New opportunities 

As part of this, we have redesigned the appraisal process to support better dialogue between managers and their teams, specifically around career development. Too often, people are blinkered regards their career path. They think in a very linear way, which sometimes prevents them from spotting other opportunities that might exist for their development. We want our staff to know that they have options and opportunities to learn new things. Part of our new appraisal process involves helping individuals uncover not just skills but interests. We are ensuring managers have the coaching skills necessary to have these conversations, to help staff define a path for their career; a purpose for being at BACB and an understanding of shared responsibility for the future of the bank. 

Ten years have passed since the height of the financial crisis. While the streets and suits of the world’s financial centres may look the same, the sector has seen considerable change. HR processes have been at the heart of this change and will continue to be a fundamental part of ensuring the world’s banking system operates in the way it should. In helping to build an environment that supports employees and nurtures talent, together, we will make a success of The BACB Way.