Despite common belief that horses sleep standing up, PetMD says that is just not true and that they only snooze that way. To get deep REM sleep, horses must lie down. They only need 2 to 3 hours though vs. 7 to 8 for humans. Now you know.As horses have a purpose in mind when they lie down, so too do many customers when it comes to what they expect from their bank. Many expect more than great products and services at competitive prices - they expect companies (including banks) to stand for something. In other words, more customers want...
There are an estimated 5.3mm hotel rooms in the US and a study by Luxe Digital finds 65% of leisure and 69% of business travelers search online to decide where and how to travel. The Global Business Travel Association finds the following amenities were most likely to influence the business travel experience: a convenient, comfortable hotel (63%); nonstop flights (47%); booking flexibility (36%); paid time off for longer trips (34%); the type of airline carrier (28%) and being able to bring family or friends along (27%).Traveling can be fun or crazy, but hospitality lending can be a good niche for...
Historically speaking, hedges have been planted and trained over time to form a barrier or mark the boundary of a property. These topiaries have been used to enclose land as far back as some 6,000 Ys ago. In the banking world, the plant types of hedges are interesting, but the financial ones make executives even happier. Like most financial institutions, banks need a cohesive, overall hedging strategy though to do this right. Financial hedges are a bit like shock absorbers on a car. They can help reduce the volatility or bumps a bank may experience and limit the effect of...
A survey of Americans by NBC and the Wall Street Journal looked at social media. It found people are generally negative on social media, with 61% saying it does more to spread unfair attacks and rumors against public figures and corporations. Perhaps even more shocking - 82% said it wastes people's time.We know one thing though, community bankers definitely do not waste a customer's time, and they do plenty to support the cities and towns where they operate. So, as we continue to travel through Community Banking Month, we highlight some more outstanding examples of local outreach by community banks....
Some interesting things surfaced during a recent CNBC HR conference, where panels of leaders discussed the future of work. The CEO of IBM said she expects artificial intelligence (AI) to change 100% of jobs within the next 5-10Ys. Also, the head of HR at Adobe said all companies are going through a digital transformation currently, so HR experts need to build an environment where people are constantly adaptive learners. These are just a few of the discussion threads.Pulling on another thread, we find that community bankers are very focused on their small and medium business customers (SMBs) too. After all,...
A Bankrate survey asked people why they found it difficult to save more money. Expenses ranked first at 39%, followed by job isn't good enough (16%), haven't gotten to it (16%), debt (13%), don't know (7%), don't need to save more (6%) and other (3%). As you think about how to leverage the above information to capture more customers, build deposits or help existing customers, we zero in on digital marketing today. Certainly, there are some hard-won tricks to the trade when it comes to conducting successful digital marketing campaigns. More specifically, we share perspectives from community bankers who gave...
A CNBC survey finds Americans don't save very much. When asked what percentage of annual income people saved, the results were: 6-10% (25% of respondents); 5% or less (21%), nothing (19%), more than 15% (16%), 11-15% (11%), don't know (7%). To perform at the highest level, bankers know their customers should have a savings plan for every single month.When it comes to banking performance, it also makes sense to set goals and use metrics to track achievement. However, this is easier said than done.Take, for example, net interest margin (NIM). NIM is often used as a measure of performance. The...
Merriam-Webster defines biometrics as "the measurement and analysis of unique physical or behavioral characteristics (such as fingerprint or voice patterns) especially as a means of verifying personal identity." It also indicates the first known use of biometrics was 117Ys ago (way back in 1902).We bring this up because Goode Intelligence forecasted in October that there will be nearly 579mm biometric payment cards in use by 2023, and 2019 will see the commercial launch of biometric payment cards.For those who are unfamiliar, biometric payment cards are meant to boost security by embedding fingerprint sensors that capture and match the...
When you pay homage to someone, you are giving them a special honor or respect in a public way. It is with that in mind that we continue our homage to community bankers for Community Banking Month. Today, we provide you with stories that show unique and varied ways to engage with the community and give back. Community banks are quick to fill many needs and we honor you all for your tireless commitment to your communities. Years ago, one of Bank Iowa's loan officers navigated successfully through the complex process of US immigration and so he wanted...
A Gallup survey finds only 37% of people age 18-34Ys old are invested in the stock market vs. 61% of those 35Ys or older. Researchers say this variance is likely the result of higher student debt, lingering fear from the 2008 market crash and ongoing market volatility. In another sort of investing, having quality employees who are invested in the success of your business is crucial for community banks. Attracting the right employees is not enough, though, as retention is equally (and possibly more) important. According to a Gallup study, experienced and engaged employees with 10Ys+ at a...
The Identity Theft Resource Center reports that while the total number of data breaches reported in 2018 declined 23% from the prior year, the reported number of consumer records containing sensitive personally identifiable information (PII) soared 126% over that same period. Overall some 447mm records were exposed in 2018. More than ever, one's identity defines who they are, so it is critical to protect. Identities link to one's job, bank, to businesses and to other people with whom they communicate online. Although not new, crooks continue to advance in their practices to create new synthetic identities for their nefarious activities....
The normal human adult is about 70% water or so. That is a good thing because our organs and body parts need a lot of it. For example, the brain is about 80% water, lungs (90%), skin (80%), kidneys (82%), muscles (75%) and blood (85%). Water is used to regulate our temperature, make hormones, digest food, and lubricate joints, among a host of other things. That's why they say you should drink 10 or so 8-ounce glasses of water each day.Hydrating the body takes a lot of work, but it can pale in comparison to the work customers want banks...
Using new technology can be taxing for some, while boosting performance for others. In the world of education, research by McGraw finds technology increases engagement with course materials (77%), professors (64%) and other students (50%). More interesting perhaps, 86% of students say technology helps them be more effective and efficient.In banking, technology tools are critical, but some are helpful while others may be taxing. Today though we look at another sort of taxing situation and that is the impact of the new tax law. Taxpayers are now filing their first returns under the new tax law, and companies are realizing...
Parents like to be involved in the lives of their children. Look no further than a survey by the Department of Education that found 87% of parents attended a general school or PTA meeting, 75% attended a regularly scheduled parent-teacher conference and 73% attended a school or class event. Clearly many parents are involved in a variety of ways.In communities all around the US, local bankers know that April is also Community Banking Month. While community bankers are involved in and actively contribute to their communities all year, we wanted to take this opportunity to highlight some of the outreach...
There are all sorts of social media behaviors that can help businesses connect better with their customers. A survey by Sprout Social finds those that do this the best include: liking or responding to a customer (55%), showcasing your brand personality (45%), supporting a cause your customer supports (45%), participating in relevant conversations (44%) and highlighting industry or category trends (40%).To connect better with your team working on implementing the CECL standard in the next few years, we offer the following tips too. To implement the standard, your bank will need a dry run to see how your loans and...
A survey by Adobe surfaces some opportunity for banks. It asked people to rank things that were the most important to them when thinking about content sent by companies. The most important characteristics were that it be accurate (31%), informative (28%), simple (17%), entertaining (8%), they can interact with it (7%), personalized to me (6%) and beautifully designed (4%). Hopefully, this information helps as you think about the best way to engage and/or refine your approach to your customers. As for bank websites, there is much to do to avoid getting into trouble with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)....
Adobe researched a group of Americans to find out how people think about and access various brands. Community bankers will find it interesting that respondents spend an average 8.8 hours each day engaging with digital content. By age category, Gen Z was tops at 11.4 hours, followed by millennials (10.9), Gen X (8.9) and boomers (7.5). Overall, some 53% said they constantly or frequently used multiple devices, with millennials leading at 73%, followed by Gen Z (66%), Gen X (53%) and boomers (42%).No matter your customer groupings, as the data shows, people similarly expect their banks to operate more like...
An Adobe survey finds consumers go to multiple places when researching something they want to purchase. While some apply more to a retail setting, banks should note the major ones include: a personal visit (49%); company website (44%); mobile app (16%); over the phone (11%); using home assistants (10%). Also, younger generations use social networks and video channels not only for research but also for post purchase interactions. As you think about your changing customer base from the data above, we also offer some information below related to changes that are occurring with your employees. Here, we point out that...
A survey by Harris Interactive finds certain people are off limits when it comes to being an April Fool's target, while others are just fine. Those most people will avoid are: boss (64%), teacher or professor (64%), a young child (56%) and parents (53%). Meanwhile, those that rate at the top of the potential target list: best friends (76%), spouse or significant other (73%), sibling (72%) and teenager (69%). Coworkers rank right in the middle, so as some coworkers may enjoy pranks today while others may not.Speaking of enjoyable events, community banks almost universally enjoy seeing new (de novo) banks...
If you want to fry your brain this morning a bit, think about the fact that space and time change when they are affected by gravity and your speed. So, if you are on Mars and someone else is on Earth, time is not the same. Also, the faster you travel, the slower time moves. As you think about that this morning, we shift to the world of M&A in banking and its speed in our current time.To get a handle on things, we take a quick look at data from S&P Global Market Intelligence that finds the number of
Researchers who looked at MRIs and studied people find some of those who go around correcting other people's grammar might just be suffering from a type of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) known as Grammatical Pedantry Syndrome (GPS). Of course, others say correcting poor grammar isn't the disease, but rather not correcting it is. We will leave it to you to decide.Whatever the disorder or disease, banks play a much bigger role in and around healthcare these days. In fact, bank customers and employees faced with rising medical costs have gravitated more toward health savings accounts (HSAs), in some cases. HSAs can
In the age of smartphones, it is easy to forget how far we have come since the first phone was invented back in 1876 by Alexander Graham Bell. Interestingly, Bell suggested people who picked up calls say "ahoy." Also of note, the first phone call was between Bell and his assistant Thomas Watson. Finally, the origin of the phrase to "put someone on hold" came when Bell handed his phone to Watson and said, "Here, hold this." We have come a long way since then in the telephone world and we have also come a long way when it comes
The median age of the US population according to the Census Bureau is about 38Ys old. That is up from a median of 30Ys old in 1980 and only 23Ys old in 1900. Meanwhile, FL has the highest percentage of senior residents 65+ at 20.1%, while AK has the lowest at about 9.5%. If you feel like you aged just reading this, know that only 3.6% of people 65Ys+ are in nursing homes or assisted living, there are 4 women to every 3 men over age 65Ys, but that drops to 4 women to every 2 men over 85Ys. No
Despite the fact that research from the University of Notre Dame finds telling the truth improves your health, humans still lie and start doing so as early as age two. Other research finds Americans lie about 11x each week on average, and people have about a 50/50 chance of catching a lie, when they see it. Finally, additional research seems to indicate one of the best ways to catch a liar is to listen for negative words, over positive ones, and for exclusionary words, which they often use. Also, keep asking "why" if you aren't sure, because liars subconsciously have
We came across an interesting set of data that ranked the deadliest animals on earth for humans. Ranking at the top we did not find sharks (cause 6 human deaths per year) or lions (22). Nor did we find crocodiles (1,000) or snakes (100,000). No, the tiny mosquito hit the top, at a whopping 750k deaths per year. Now you know, so you can better prepare as you wander through life.Speaking of preparing for things, more and more baby boomers are speeding towards retirement. That means more and more businesses will need to be prepared to change hands in the
Our educational missive this morning has to do with llamas. These critters are part of the camel family, they can weigh up to 450 pounds, are 6 feet tall and are smart enough not to carry more weight than they can handle (they just lie down until you unload them). They also don't bite, but humans should know that llamas can believe humans are also llamas, leading them to spit in your general direction occasionally. We just like the mental picture of a lost llama wandering around a bank branch randomly spitting at people right about now. However, if your
If you like to eat the occasional apple, you might be interested to know that 90% of modern apples trace back to 2 trees in Kazakhstan. If that doesn't do it for you, consider as well that apples are grown in all 50 US states, it takes 2 pounds of apples to make a pie and there are 2,500 varieties of apples grown here. Also of note, apples are a member of the rose family and they ripen 10x faster at room temperature than when refrigerated. Whether it is true or not that apples have some medicinal value and may
Fishing is one of the most popular outdoor recreational activities in the US, but you may not know these interesting facts from The Fish Site we uncovered: catfish have 27,000 taste buds vs. 9,000 for humans; lobsters have longer life spans than cats or dogs and live 20Ys; and the typical fish brain is about 1/15 the mass of a similarly sized bird or mammal. Meanwhile, Statista reports that in 2017, more than 49mm Americans participated in freshwater, saltwater and fly fishing. Many people like to fish it seems, but phishing of another variety is not so popular in banking
When it comes to birthdays, did you know: the most common birth date in the US is October 5; the least common is May 22; almost 2B birthday cards are sent in the US each year; and in a group of 23 people there is a 50% chance that two have the same birthday. You also need to use the right ingredients to make a decent birthday cake.Many community bankers we know have been slowly gathering the proper ingredients to mix and eventually bake that cake known as CECL. For those estimated 5% to 7% who are far enough along
In psychology, one of the most common human biases is known as the confirmation bias. Science finds that humans like to confirm what we already know or think we know. In fact, we will actively favor information that confirms our preexisting beliefs. To avoid this issue, it is important to slow down, think about the decision you are about to make, and openly consider other options, to help alert the brain to avoid this bias.One thing we do want to confirm for community bankers today though is that many small business owners appear to be uneasy about their ability to
When someone gives something to someone else for mutual benefit it is known as reciprocity. Studies in fact, find that when someone does something beneficial to you, the vast majority (90%+) are prepared to do something beneficial in return, even when it was not decided in advance. One easy example is from social media circles where liking a picture sent to you carries with it the unspoken expectation that person will also like a picture of yours.There are many examples of reciprocal arrangements in banking too. Reciprocal deposits, for instance, offer excess insurance. They are not new, but some things
Weighing in at only 3 pounds, the human brain is amazing. Yet, it also changes as you age. At around age 60 or 70 years old, science reports shrinkage starts in the frontal lobe and hippocampus areas where higher cognitive function and new memories are saved. As parts of the brain shrink, communication between neurons can also decline and blood flow may decrease. This can adversely impact learning and other mental activities.We should not be too surprised then when we learn evildoers seek to take advantage of this, and as a result, senior citizens lose huge sums of money to
We have all seen it during our lives. You go to some major event and as the audience continues to clap loudly, the tired performer slowly returns to the stage for an encore performance. We bring this up for our audience of bankers and note the word encore reportedly comes from the French phrase "still, yet, again." As you think about how best to get a work colleague to give you a standing ovation today, we shift our discussion toward customers and more specifically, entrepreneurs. Many people dream about becoming rich like the myriad of technology giants, but it isn't
The official definition of an acronym is "an abbreviation formed from the initial letters of other words and pronounced as a word." Examples abound, but some of the familiar ones are NASA, SWAT and GIF. As you ponder other acronyms, CECL may come to mind. While banks are in different stages of readiness, one thing we have recently heard is that some banks are considering using Weighted Average Remaining Maturity (WARM) for their CECL calculations. This method calculates an annual expected charge-off rate based on multiple historical periods. It then takes that rate and applies it to the remaining
There are a multitude of quotes about being prepared. Whether your favorite is "By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail" (Ben Franklin) or "Luck is preparation meeting opportunity" (Oprah Winfrey), they all seem to resonate.In the world of banking, management and boards both know that preparation for any regulatory examination is critical, if you are going to keep everything on track and moving forward. This is certainly true when it comes to areas of regulatory focus like the asset liability management (ALM) process, as the Fed is raising interest rates and margins are seeing pressure.To help your bank
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports the median number of years employees have worked for their current employer is 4.6Ys, while those ages 25 to 34 are only at 3.2Ys. With statistics like these, it is not surprising that the days of giving gold watches to employees at retirement have also been retired. As employees are moving around and unemployment is still historically low, the competition is heating up--for employees, managers, executives and key players across the board. To help you in this regard, we explore some recent findings on what banks can do to keep employees happy.It turns
The latest annual global survey of CEOs by PwC surfaces some interesting points for community bankers. For example, the top threats identified for this year include over-regulation (35%), policy uncertainty (35%), availability of key skills (34%), trade conflicts (31%) and cyber threats (30%). These cut across all sorts of countries, but so many apply to community banking here in the US that we thought we would highlight it for you today.Speaking of things to highlight, nearly every community banker we know thinks relentlessly about customer growth and opportunity. Improving customer retention can play a significant role in enhancing customer profitability
Community banks still seem to be underestimating the impact fintechs can have on their lending to small businesses, as only 7% of community banks see fintechs as a major competitor for this business, according to the latest 2018 Community Banking in the 21st Century survey. But, with both fintechs and larger banks aggressively courting small businesses, community banks need to realize that "business as usual" is no longer an option.From major banks such as the Bank of Montreal (BMO) to military insurance and banking provider USAA, there is no shortage of players hoping to lure small businesses away
There are all sorts of fabrics to choose from when it comes to clothing and fashion trends. This year, Vogue says some of the top fashion trends are contemporary oatmeal (beige), tie dye, lace, Seventies-era crochet, fisherman weaves, and macram? appliqu? to name a few. In banking, there are plenty of other trends to take note of, particularly when it comes to person-to-person (P2P) payments. These transactions provide a convenient way to move money and seem fairly rooted in the US financial fabric these days. In fact, some $1T changed hands through P2P systems in 2017 alone. This is a
A survey of small business owners by Infusionsoft finds the biggest marketing challenges these customers say they face this year are: not using digital marketing (29%), finding time and resources for marketing (22%), converting leads into customers (15%), retaining and re-engaging customers (12%) and generating web traffic (9%). Many community banks have programs to help with some of these challenges, so it could be a good time to reach out to biz customers and let them know.Speaking of small business customers, today we focus on those known as digital-first customers. Novantas Research's 2018 Omni-Channel Shopper Survey reveals several
There are lots of things to do in London, like seeing Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London and riding the London Eye observation wheel. In the banking industry, one of the biggest reference rates also came from London -- the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). It has been used for over three decades as the global standard benchmark for pricing all types of financial transactions. As we have highlighted before, that will soon be changing and banks will need to adjust their loans to a new benchmark known as the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR). LIBOR background. Following
If you were wondering where the larger banks are spending money when it comes to setting technology priorities, consider research by Ovum. It finds the most important areas for digital technology are: creating digital capability (28%), modernizing legacy systems (23%), managing security, identity and privacy (18%), building a modern workplace (15%) and adopting cloud services (10%). Now you know.No matter where you are spending money on technology, we bet more of it today is going towards mobility. People want the freedom to travel and move around and they don't want work to interfere with that. To support this and cement
Our community bank readers will likely be interested to know about some research by Deloitte. People were asked the likelihood they would increase their branch usage if specific features were offered by their bank. Those ranking at the top were: extended service hours through virtual remote services with a representative (36%); digital screen self-service with representative help if needed (34%); ability to schedule a personal appointment for a virtual video meeting with a representative (31%); and a branch that resembles a caf? where you can plug in, hang out and work (31%).As you ponder where to enhance your branch network
The International Dairy Foods Association did some research that finds the average American consumes 23 pounds of ice cream each year. It also reports: June and July are the busiest months for ice cream production, waffle and sugar cones tie for most popular containers, and the favorite ice cream flavors in order are Vanilla, Chocolate, Cookies N' Cream and Mint Chocolate Chip. All we know is that it is certainly tasty!Something is happening in the banking world, however, that isn't nearly as tasty as a good bowl of ice cream. It relates to finding good employees and something known as
A survey last month by Bankrate asked people how they thought their personal financial situation this year would be compared to next year. It found 88% said it would stay the same or get better. That is good news and likely points to ongoing economic growth this year so bankers are happy about that.Another area where community bankers could be happy over the longer term relates to the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012. It has only taken 7Ys, but finally federal regulators are implementing provisions of the act that can have important implications for community banks.In February, the
Back in 2014, Zagat surveyed people about their pizza eating habits. They found the most popular topping was pepperoni at 37%, followed by sausage (33%), mushroom (32%) and cheese (28%). People said they eat pizza about 4x each month and average about 3 slices when doing so. We wonder what this survey might look like if it were updated today.Making a pizza is pretty easy once you have done it a few times, and the same might be said about banking. After all, at its most basic, the bank business consists of two main tasks: taking money in through deposits
When it comes to your hearing there are certain things to know. For example, some experts say long or repeated exposure to sound above 85 decibels can lead to hearing loss. To see how you are doing, know that a busy office, normal conversation or a dishwasher is about 60, an alarm clock or hair dryer is 80, a concert is 110 and an ambulance siren is 120. As you listen to the noise around you today, we point out that it is important as well for community banks to listen to customers in order to better understand how to
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) posted an interesting article on what causes ocean tides. It notes that the gravitational attraction of the sun and moon is a major force. But because it is closer to Earth by a longshot, the moon plays a greater role. Given the Earth's rotation, high tides occur 12 hours and 25 minutes and it takes 6 hours and 12.5 minutes for the water at the shore to go from high to low (or low to high).While bankers can count on exactly when the tide will go out, things are not so certain when
Onboarding anyone can be a tricky thing if not done right. Consider research that finds 32% of global executives rate their onboarding experience as poor (Harvard Business Review), 54% of companies with onboarding programs have higher employee engagement (Society For Human Resources Management) and 50% of employees who have a poor onboarding experience think their company is doing poorly overall (bamboohr).Clearly, good onboarding is important at community banks and this carries through as well when bringing on new directors.Bringing board members up to speed quickly is a key task, but not always an easy one. While many board members have
We surfaced some interesting OECD information compiled by Economist.com that looked at the percentage of jobs vulnerable to automation. It broke the analysis down by country and found those most at risk by percent of total were Slovakia (64%), Lithuania (63%), Turkey (59%) and Greece (57%). Meanwhile, those least at risk were Norway (31%), New Zealand (33%), Finland (34%), Sweden (36%) and the US (37%). No matter how you slice this though, the impact of technology is huge.Speaking of technology and more specifically that of banking, we take a look today at augmented reality (AR). It has now come to
Competition is always on the mind of community bankers. One new area to monitor in this area perhaps surfaced in some research by Bain late last year. It found 29% of those surveyed say they trust at least 1 technology company more than their primary bank and 54% said they trust at least 1 tech company more than banks in general. Clearly, this shows keeping customer loyalty is tough these days.Another tough area where banks are focusing efforts is in and around all things cyber. As digital efforts have expanded in the industry, banks have significantly boosted security measures to
We came across a fun fact you might like to know. Back in the day, Shakespeare reportedly made over 100 references to insects in his writings. Even more interesting perhaps, while all bugs are insects, not all insects are bugs (which have a straw-like mouth), according to combatbugs.com. As you think about what might be bugging you today, as you get started at the bank, we thought you may also be interested to know that US retail banks have an opportunity to boost their share of deposits by as much as 16.5%, according to new analysis conducted by
Kantar research finds marketers are slowly evolving away from gender, but they still have a ways to go. For instance, they found advertisements of baby, laundry and household cleaner products are 98% targeted to female audiences, while motor oil brands are 71% targeted at male audiences. Obviously either gender can buy any of these products, so depending on who shops that day, sales could be lost or found. This could be interesting for banks too, as you rethink the buying process for your own products.When it comes to targeting businesses that offer hemp products, things are also shifting, so bankers
Celent reviewed how people preferred to engage and interact with banks in 2018. The findings were: when the topic is lengthy, 77% prefer to visit a branch, while 17% would call a contact center. However, if the topic is quick, people would rather call a contact center (53%), go to a branch (27%), or use text chat (17%). Age differences can be stark though, so look closely at facts and circumstances of your own situation and customers.Just as there are significant differences between the individuals that use community banks, there should be differences in the ways that banks cater to
People move for all sorts of reasons. In fact, Census Bureau research finds 11% of people move in a year, but 62% of those who do, stay in their same county. The main reasons people said they moved were: relocate to a better home (16%), establish their own household (12%), for other family reasons (11%), for a new job or transfer (10%) and to find cheaper housing (8%).No matter if or why you are moving around this year, know that the largest banks are actively using technology to keep in touch with employees that are on the move or working
People often confuse blockchain with distributed ledger technology (DLT). To help, we note that DLT is really a fancy database (ledger) that is spread out across multiple computing devices (nodes). Each node saves an identical copy of the ledger and individually updates once a majority of nodes agrees with the change. A blockchain is a form of DLT, whereby data is organized in blocks, which are then linked to each other in a chain. Now that you are educated on the basics of blockchain and DLT, we take a brief look at how some central banks worldwide are experimenting with
Salesforce took a look at business executive expectations and found that 72% now expect those who do business with them to personalize engagement to their needs, 69% expect Amazon-like buying experiences and 67% say vendors are providing more retail-like experiences than ever before. The data show customers clearly want and demand more from partners, so be aware.Speaking of customer expectations, banks too are feeling the impact of this shift. Given constant access to information, to connect with all kinds of service providers day or night, the ability to order virtually any item and see it on your doorstep within 24
In case you missed it, Fed research finds the percentage of debt Americans owe by major category is: 68% mortgage, 11% student, 9% auto, 6% credit cards, 3% home equity revolving and 3% other. Speaking of debt, community bankers will find the most recent Financial Stability Report by the Fed interesting perhaps. At least, as it relates to one chapter on borrowing by businesses. The analysis finds business sector debt relative to gross domestic product (GDP) is at historically high levels and there are signs of deteriorating credit standards. Since community bankers do so much business with small businesses,
CBRE did some research and asked office tenants to rank the top services or amenities they wanted. The top ones were: a fitness center (34%), wellness classes (30%), coffee bar (26%) and a cafeteria (26%). Something to think about as you glance around your own office space amenities perhaps.Bankers also need to periodically look inside the board room to identify strengths and weaknesses. We guess most community bankers who do this will see a group of people who are smart, dedicated, experienced, and ethical - but maybe not so young. In fact, only 16% of all bank boards of directors
Some interesting research by EverQuote looked at the driving habits of licensed American drivers. It was about evenly split between men and women. It surfaced that about 23% of people think you must respond to text messages right away and 55% say it should happen within 5 minutes. Also interesting, about 96% of drivers think of themselves as safe, but 37% say less than half of other drivers are safe. Be careful as you drive out there, because remember there are a bunch of crappy drivers all around you as you share the road.In banking, sharing has taken on a
We wanted to share a survey by Adobe on email usage. When asked how long people wait before checking email after they wake up, most wait until they get into the office (39%), but others do so while getting ready (27%), while still in bed (23%) or when about to leave home (11%).As you think about which one of these buckets you fit into, it is worth noting that clearly different people have different ways of working with email. The same is true when it comes to ensuring proper network security. After all, not all data is important or critical,
A survey by comScore found the apps smartphone users aged 18 to 34Ys old say they cannot go without in order are: Amazon (35%), Gmail (30%), Facebook (29%), Messenger (18%), YouTube (16%), Google Maps (14%), Google Search (11%), Apple App Store (11%), WhatsApp (11%) and Instagram (11%). Bankers would love to have those percentages for their own apps, but alas it does not appear to be so. Perhaps energies instead could be spent in the area of boosting financial literacy efforts to the next level.To do so, consider perhaps making your offerings part of the bank's "university". You could offer
Amazon is an interesting company. Its share as the #1 US e-commerce player is reportedly a whopping 49%. In case you were wondering, that dwarfs #2 eBay (6.6%), Apple (3.9%), Walmart (3.7%) and Home Depot (1.5%). Meanwhile, for overall retail sales, the latest data (2017) shows Walmart on top at $375B, followed by Kroeger ($116B), Amazon ($103B), Costco ($93B) and Home Depot ($92B). It will be interesting to see where Amazon ends 2018 once the 2018 data is released.Clearly Amazon sets the bar when it comes to online and retail sales activity. It got us thinking about that often cited
People and animals can be weird, yet similar. Psychological research now finds similarities between humans and the animal kingdom in the way they approach certain ventures. It seems mice and rats (like humans), are less likely to give up and move on to something else, once they have sunk time and effort into it.This trait of persistence serves bankers well though in protecting customers against ATM fraud. As such, we thought we would update you further here, since ATMs still play an important role as a retail delivery channel for community banks.While some community banks still manage their own
Everyone knows the old saying of putting yourself in someone else's shoes to better understand their perspective. We were interested to find out though that a study surfaced last year that covered 25 experiments to see if you could do that. It found that there was no consistent evidence that trying to take someone else's perspective increased accuracy. It appears stepping into someone else's shoes is more difficult than previously thought.Over time, behavioral economists have long puzzled on the issues of how people react to money and payment. Increasingly, banks are paying attention to these findings too, as they seek
In case you were wondering or are one of those people who doesn't sleep well, we offer some new information for you to consume. Researchers have found that people who have more social support tend to get better sleep. Now maybe you can go back to sleep!For community bankers, there is no rest however when it comes to keeping customers happy. In fact, while millennials may be the customers of the future, for the present, their finances appear to be problematic. Here, BAI research found that traditional bank deposits by millennials declined about 30% in 2018, after dropping
WalletHub did an online survey of winter travel trends and found the following interesting tidbits: 64% of people said they plan to travel away from home this winter, 45% said you can find better travel deals in the winter than the summer, 40% who did not plan to travel this winter said it was because they could not afford it and 37% said travel is worth going into debt. Given winter rolls on through February, you still have some time.In the banking world, some might say customers have cooled down on ATM usage. We think that is premature, as cardless
Sadly, this is the 19th government shutdown since 1976. This is the longest one yet, so hopefully everyone gets their act together soon. In the meantime, community banks and their customers are feeling the effects, now in its fourth week. Many federal lending programs and other mortgage-related functions are delayed or cancelled, so we wanted to give you a rundown of the situation.The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is closed. The Federal Housing Authority (FHA) will endorse new single-family loans, but not reverse mortgages or property-improvement loans. Because the FHA is operating with fewer employees than usual, there
Research by projecttimeoff.com examined how Americans take vacation. Among the findings: 52% of employees end the year with unused vacation and the average employee earned 23.2 paid time off days with 17.2 of those used (26% unused). This could be your year for vacation, because 76% of those who travel and use their vacation say they are happy vs. only 48% of those who identify as homebodies. Go somewhere and have fun.What isn't fun is collecting on your small and medium business (SMB) customers. But, bankers inevitably need to do so on some customers. For many, the methods used are
HR firm Mercer did a study last year that looked at what employees really want from their companies. For the financial services industry in particular, the following surfaced: 64% of employees say state-of-the-art digital tools are important to their success; 51% want more flexible work options; 44% are worried though that flexible work options negatively impact promotions; only 31% say their company makes it easy for them to innovate.As you chew on that this morning, consider that banks are trying to innovate too with artificial intelligence (AI) to expedite decision-making and improve the customer experience too.In a report
A Harris Poll conducted on behalf of Glassdoor took a look at the top things job seekers want to see in any advertised position. Those ranked highest were: salary (67%), benefits (63%), location (59%), commute time (43%) and employee reviews (32%). Now you know, just in case you need to find a new employee this year.Speaking of things to do in 2019, bankers know cybersecurity ranks right at the top. To protect your bank, here are some tried and true ways to do so.Once a community bank determines that a bad actor has entered their system, the IT security team
A CareerBuilder study looked at the workplace and found some interesting statistics that include such things as: 58% of mangers say they did not receive any management training, 70% of employers use social networking sites to research job candidates during the hiring process and 57% found content that caused them not to hire candidates.No matter your job situation, we always like to share interesting things community bankers are doing, so today we zero in on a family-owned community bank in OK. This bank just might be targeting good customer prospects by boldly revolutionizing mobile banking. You see, it offers a
The internet is truly powerful, and as you prepare to target customers and retain existing ones this year, we thought you might like to know some statistics. For instance, for every $92 spent generating traffic online, only $1 is spent converting customers; people spend about 5 hours each week shopping online; 58% of buyers want the first sales call to include pricing information; and 63% of all mobile phone users access the internet from their phone.When you think about how best to market to customers, one area that is of interest to many banks is agricultural lending. After all, it
INRIX transportation research looked at how much time motorists spend searching for places to park and which US cities were the worst. It found people spend an average of 17 hours/year searching. The worst cities are: New York (107 hours/year), Los Angeles (85), San Francisco (83), DC (65), Seattle (58). Now you know.As you ponder your drive into work this morning, consider something closer to banking perhaps. To win, community banks must continue to set themselves apart from competitors. Community banks need to show they are tuned in to customers' needs and dedicated to providing the latest offerings. Not surprisingly,
Everyone knows bank capital is the difference between assets and liabilities. In its most basic form, if all of the assets were sold and the liabilities were paid back, what is left should be about the same as the bank's capital. The level of capital, regulatory speaking at least, is essentially the pool available to support all of the bank leverage and ensure its solvency.In an interesting twist on capital, regulators are giving well-capitalized community banks a break on the leverage ratio. The FDIC estimates that more than 80% of the nation's 5,400 community banks could qualify for a simpler
If you were wondering which movies got top ranking on Rotten Tomatoes last year, they rank in the following order: Paddington 2, Leave no Trace, Summer 1993, Minding the Gap, and Pick of the Litter. We are not saying these are our favorites for the year. But, if you have a slow weekend, you might want to check them out as the new movies roll out this year.As you think about 2019, we thought it would be a good time to highlight some things about the current expected credit loss (CECL) standard for estimating allowances for credit losses. There is
Last year was an interesting one for scientists. They figured out how to use nano-robots to kill cancer, found a large body of water on Mars, created a new drug to treat migraines, grew meat in a lab without using animals, found a 3,200 year old cheese, and birthed a healthy baby mouse from two moms and no dad. We are looking forward to seeing what discoveries this year brings.We realize that we just reported on the cyber risk of privileged users, but we haven't discussed the Sheltered Harbor program yet so we thought this may be a good time
To get more done this year, it might be time to try the Rule of 52 and 17. This rule is based on research detailed in the book, Peak Performance. It finds that using interval training similar to sports can significantly enhance productivity. Employees who work 52 minutes and then take 17 minutes of rest (interval training) should move into the top 10% of the most productive, so perhaps it is worth a try. Speaking of things to try, the same could be said of banks. Last year was an almost unprecedented year of change in regulations. New and changing
To give yourself a chance to hit your New Year's goals this year, research finds the best way to do it is to be very specific and have goals that are attainable. For instance, instead of saying you want to stop eating sweets by the end of the year, you might want to start with something like you will only have 1 candy bar per month. Specificity increases your odds of success.As you think about that, consider a new study that reveals small businesses remain eager for loans. Anticipated small business loan demand is at its highest level since 2012,
Every New Year people set goals they want to attain and 2019 is probably no different from prior years for most community bankers. Of note, however, research shows only 8% of people actually achieve their goals, so focus is critical if you want to achieve yours. Good luck in 2019!Though the number of banks in the US has declined over the past few decades, community banks remain an important part of the banking industry. Community banks number about 5,000 vs. roughly 14,000 some 30Ys ago, but remain the only physical banking option for 20% of the counties in the country.