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Intended Results

In the 2020/21 Corporate Plan for the Royal Australian Navy Relief Trust Fund the Trustees determined that the intended result of the Fund was to provide benefits to eligible persons in a timely, relevant, and meaningful manner.

Performance Measurement Methodology

The Trustees determined that the Fund’s performance in achieving its intended result would be measured via surveying those who received benefits from the Fund, Commanding Officers, Personnel Officers and others who are involved in managing and/or administering recipients of Fund benefits. As part of this survey, Commanding Officers of Ships and Establishments were invited to identify any additional ways in which the Fund could provide other or greater benefits that are relevant and meaningful.

Actual Results

Feedback from recipients of benefits, Commanding Officers, Personnel Officers and others who are involved in managing and/or administering recipients of Fund benefits indicates that the Fund is providing meaningful and relevant benefits to eligible personnel in a timely manner.

Analysis of Results

Performance Criterion 1 – Timely

Source: Corporate Plan Page 4

Measurement methodology: A survey was sent to Commanding Officers, Personnel Officers and others who are involved in managing and/or administering recipients of the Fund asking for their assessment of the relevance of the Fund to their personnel

Results: In accordance with the RANRTF Rules and Procedures Manual, and as advertised to local agents, General Purpose loans are to be processed and paid within three weeks of the Principal Office’s receipt of a correctly completed loan application. In reality, most loans are paid in a far shorter timeframe than those advertised. Special Loans are generally processed within three working days and, if the situation is urgent and all relevant information to enable Trustee decision making is provided, special loans can be processed and paid within the same day. There were no negative comments from the survey regarding timeframes for payments of loans and one suggestion to remove the two-person approval process to help improve this element of the Fund’s business. Responses indicated that loans were processed within reasonable timeframes and expectations. Comments related to the timeliness included:

“All benefits are always actioned in a timely manner by the RANRTF Loan Office”

“…they can be paid or provided the benefits without having to wait for payday or an extended period for the funds to be transferred into their account. As previously noticed, the time in which transactions occur has improved dramatically…”

“Staff constantly provide a quick turnaround of normal loans, and provide timely and quicker processing should something be required due to urgency of circumstances”

Analysis: A deliberate decision was undertaken by the Trustees to advertise timelines that adequately allowed for processing times taking into account the workload of the Principal Office and the batching of the General Purpose loans. Actual timeframes for payment of loans are generally well inside the advertised times for most General Purpose loans and the Fund is extremely responsive in staffing requests for Special loans where there is an urgent requirement for the funds.

Performance Criterion 2 – Relevant and Meaningful

Source: Corporate Plan Page 4

Measurement methodology: A survey was forwarded to Commanding Officers, Personnel Officers and others who are involved in managing and/or administering recipients of the Fund asking for their assessment of the relevance and meaningfulness of the Fund’s products to their personnel.

Results: Responses to the survey were received from six Commanding Officers and/or Personnel Officers, with the focus of the feedback primarily on the wide range of financial products and services provided by the Fund. Over recent years’ the adoption of a more principles based approach, which enables a broader range of loan products able to be utilised across a wider span of purchase options, and the provisions of an additional “Christmas 2.0 loan” has shown rewards with the following comments representative of the feedback received:

“Both … are relevant and provide Command and members with enough flexibility to meet individual circumstances”

“Yes, especially over this COVID period, I feel more members have been using the funds…”

“The loans and the products available under the loan remain relevant, the fact that the loan has increased in monetary value is reflective of contemporary costs of the type of things that the loan is intended for and has been well received”

“The wider scope of the RANRTF Loan is valuable tool that allows members to have better use of the loans.”

Analysis: The feedback indicates that the products provided by the Fund are both meaningful and relevant to the recipients and are assisting to provide additional support to members that are experiencing challenging and complex personal circumstances. Furthermore, the increased range of loan products are identified as an important resource for Command, when providing assistance options to their members.

As in previous years, eligibility for the 2020 Christmas Loan was restricted to personnel not already holding a General Purpose or Special Loan in order to manage the demand on the Fund’s limited cash reserves and to avoid potential for imposing an over burdening debt on members. However, this year due to the health of the Fund an additional Christmas 2.0 loan was offered to assist with easing the burden of the impacts of COVID-19 on RAN members. Whilst there was a pleasing uptake of this product, the Fund remains very healthy and there remains sufficient funds available to satisfy the demand for the General Purpose loan, as the Fund’s primary product.

Analysis of the feedback indicates that the Fund, whilst doing an adequate job of ensuring its products and services are promoted and advertised appropriately, should not become complacent and should strive to raise awareness about its products and services through regular and ongoing communications spanning a wide variety of formats.