ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 29


video-based technology allowed the bank to offer extended
service at branches but operate them with more readily
available staff in Lubbock.
"We now operate from 6:00 a.m. to midnight, seven days
a week," he explains. "That's been a huge benefit for our
customer base." It's also a big driver of efficiency, as the
bank can now operate its seven Midland branches with just
4-5 tellers total, versus 28 before.

Eye on the customer
Maust notes that the most successful innovations have
focused first on improving the customer experience but
that they have significant secondary benefits in bank
efficiencies. (He also uses ITMs to serve a remote, central
Oregon location outside of his main market, adding full
branch capabilities to what is otherwise a loan office.)
Bankers can find it difficult sometimes to talk about tech
with customers, but it's essential to. "When you have the
customer expectations of ease of delivery, and yet we have
to protect that information, it's a difficult balance," says
John Bothof, market president in the Omaha, Neb., area
for the Iowa-based Northwest Bank. "If we wanted just to
have total disregard for protecting customer information
and those type of things, I think we could deliver it easier
and faster." But (obviously) bankers have high regard
for customer protection, which makes them a bit slower
to adapt the newest technology. So communicating with
customers about why it takes a long time is a must-
and, in the long run, can build customer confidence by
demonstrating the deliberation with which banks treat
customer data.
To help customers understand, Bothof hosts IT summits
for his local business customers. The bank's top IT and
treasury management staff discuss how the bank protects
the customer and what the customers' systems need to
have to remain secure. "We invite our customers in and we
visit with them about what's happening in technology and
what some of the risks are in technology," he says. "From a
standpoint of cybersecurity, we actually put a global map up
there and start showing the number of hits and the things
that are going on worldwide. And then we just emphasize
to them the importance of us being able to be responsive to
those things and how we measure our success to that."
At Zions Bancorporation, "we try to be pretty proactive" in
figuring out customer needs through surveys, focus groups
and other methods, says SVP Robert Spendlove, "seeing
what the different trends look like-especially among the
different age groups."

Structured for success
Bank leaders employ a variety of approaches to integrating IT
into their management structures. At Brignac's and Maust's
banks-both with assets of around $159 million-the CIO
reports directly to the CEO. Larger community banks, such
as Isaac's, Diaz-Rousselot's and Hermann's, have IT report
through the CFO or chief operating officer. (Cole's bank, at
$100 million in assets, also has IT report to the COO.)
With Bothof's bank, which is part of a two-bank holding
company, IT is handled at the holding company level. The
same is true at the $59 billion Zions Bancorporation, which is a
holding company for several-in many cases much smaller-
community banks. "We really encourage the local development
of technology, although we try to share those technologies
throughout the organization and try to use best practices as a
way to share those developments," Spendlove says.
But no matter how the organization chart is constructed,
bankers emphasize the need for collaboration and frequent
conversation. "We're small enough we all meet together," says
Hermann. "It's a lot of dialogue."
The dialogue continues at the board level, with bankers
reporting that they spend a lot of time educating their directors
and gaining their feedback and insights on IT issues. "We've
got our IT officer on point to prepare the annual strategic plan,"
says Isaacs in a representative comment. "And that works
hand-in-hand with the presentations to the board and then the
board's review of that particular plan.
When launching new technology, internal communication
is key. Before you roll it out to the public, the staff need to
understand the product as fully installed. "The message gets
mixed from time to time, and that leaks out to customers who
get a different interpretation," Isaacs adds. "If they get little
bit of information, they'll extrapolate that into a wrong piece
of information."
Hermann advises bankers to test products extensively with
their own staff first. "They've got to be in the forefront," he
says. "Otherwise, how are you going to sell it to people if you're
not using it?"
Bankers will continue to rely on their partners and vendors
to help them navigate these changes. "We have limited
bandwidth, limited resources from our financial standpoint, so
which do you prioritize knowing that there's an unknown ROI
for that investment," says Maust. "We're really good at what
we do as community banks, with face-to-face interactions and
relationships. I'd love to be able to have an online experience
for customers and clients that mirrors that."
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29


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016

Chairman’s View
Upfront
Picture This
Banking’s ‘Amazon Moment’
Special Report on Innovation and Technology
Building an ‘Internet of Value’
Do You Do What the Data Tell You?
Innovation in the Bank
Core Exercises
Cover Story Pillar of Her Community
Maintaining a Commitment to Ag Customers
Who You Gonna Call?
Anti-Money Laundering
Power Up Profile
Compliance ‘When Can I Call My Customer?’
Risk Management
ABA Compliance Center Inbox
From the States
Corporate Social Responsibility
Index of Advertisers
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - bellyband1
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - bellyband2
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - cover1
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - cover2
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 3
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 4
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 5
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 6
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 7
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Chairman’s View
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 9
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 10
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Upfront
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 12
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 13
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 14
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 15
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Picture This
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 17
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 18
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 19
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Special Report on Innovation and Technology
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 21
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 22
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Building an ‘Internet of Value’
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 24
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 25
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Do You Do What the Data Tell You?
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 27
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - insert1
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - insert2
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Innovation in the Bank
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 29
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 30
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Core Exercises
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Cover Story Pillar of Her Community
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 33
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 34
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 35
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 36
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 37
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Maintaining a Commitment to Ag Customers
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 39
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 40
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Who You Gonna Call?
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 42
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 43
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Anti-Money Laundering
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 45
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 46
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Power Up Profile
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 48
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Compliance ‘When Can I Call My Customer?’
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 50
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Risk Management
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - ABA Compliance Center Inbox
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 53
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 54
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - From the States
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - 56
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Corporate Social Responsibility
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - Index of Advertisers
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - cover3
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2016 - cover4
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