New data released by CommBank today reveals Aussies are missing out on more than $10 billion in unclaimed benefits, rebates and concession payments each year.
This includes green slip refunds, energy rebates, toll relief, carer allowances, help with kids’ activities and many more.
To help customers track down these rebates and claim what they are entitled to, CommBank has launched ‘Benefits finder’ - a new feature in the CommBank app connecting customers to more than 250 potential benefits.
Pete Steel, Chief Digital Officer at Commonwealth Bank, said: “We’re determined to help our customers claim the benefits and rebates they are entitled to. Collectively these can add up to a significant amount per household, leaving more money to help pay for everyday expenses and to save for the things that matter.
“Whether it’s claiming a car registration rebate or money off a utility bill, Benefits finder uses data capability and machine learning to put potential entitlements in front of customers at the right time, and then nudges them to start a claim.
“Our data shows there are some large amounts people are entitled to with many unaware of what they can claim. Making it easier for our customers to see what they may be entitled to is just one way we are working to improve our customers’ financial wellbeing.”
With CommBank research revealing one in three (35 per cent) Australians struggle with money management, and two in five (41 per cent) are unprepared to handle a large unexpected expense, CommBank has been working with Harvard Sustainability Transparency Accountability and Research (STAR) Lab, to better understand how to help customers manage their money.
Professor Michael Hiscox and his team at Harvard’s STAR Lab have been assessing the impact of Benefits finder for customers, examining ways to optimise it so that it has the largest positive impacts.
“Past research has shown that individuals who qualify for benefits often do not receive them because they are unaware they are eligible or because the processes for accessing benefits are complicated and time-consuming.
“In partnership with CBA, we have conducted initial tests indicating that, when CBA reaches out to customers who very likely qualify for benefits and simplifies the initial steps in the application process, customers engage at very high rates and report high levels of satisfaction.” Mr Hiscox said.
With the vast majority of Australians (90 per cent) wanting their bank to provide information about their spending, savings and strategies to save, CommBank continues its work in giving more than 7 million app users greater control and visibility of their spending.