What value should companies place on banking relationships?

The right banking partner preserves companies' health and financial stability

New Hampshire companies should always evaluate their existing banking relationships to make sure they are receiving the best services available to them. Making sure they are working with the right banking partner is important to preserve the overall health and financial stability of their companies. But what are the most important things firms should consider when evaluating their current relationship with their financial institution or when they are in search of a new partner? NH Business Review reached out to Enterprise Bank, which has eight branches in southern New Hampshire, to gain some valuable insight.

Our panel: Peter J. Rayno, Community Banking & Lending Director/Executive Vice President, EnterpriseBanking.com

• Q: How does Enterprise Bank work with your business customers to help them navigate the best way forward?

A: Here at Enterprise Bank, from the very beginning of our discussions with prospective business prospects, we strive to learn about the prospect’s business and gain insight into their financial and strategic goals. At that point, we leverage our years of experience in dealing with businesses of all types to serve as a trusted adviser and help provide guidance and suggestions on how best to meet those goals.

Regular and ongoing communication throughout our banking relationship is one of the hallmarks of Enterprise’s client relationships and a primary way in which we add value for our clients in our role as a trusted adviser.

• Q: What are the advantages of having a business relationship with a bank like Enterprise?

A: There are many advantages for businesses and not-for-profits to establish a relationship with Enterprise Bank. From our extensive suite of time-saving cash management products to our conveniently located network of branch locations throughout southern New Hampshire, there are several reasons that thousands of Granite State clients have selected Enterprise Bank for their commercial banking needs. However, the single most important advantage that we provide to our business clients is the depth, strength, and experience of our business lending team. More than half of our lenders servicing the New Hampshire market have over 25 years of experience in the commercial lending field, meaning that they are uniquely qualified to serve the role of a trusted adviser to their clients. Furthermore, our Enterprise Bank commercial lending team prides itself in its accessibility, availability, and response time to our clients.

• Q: How should companies assess whether they have a good relationship with their bank or banker?

A: Business owners should ask themselves a few key questions in order to assess the strength of their banking relationship. First, do they frequently hear from their banker? Ongoing communication between a banker and their client is critical to building mutual understanding and trust. Second, have they had the same banker managing their relationship for several years, or have they had frequent account officer turnover? The disconnect caused by frequent account officer turnover deprives a business of the benefit of having an account officer who possesses an understanding of their business that can only come with time and familiarity. Finally, does the business owner consider their banker a trusted adviser in the same way they view their attorney or accountant—someone they can rely on for important guidance and advice? If not, they are missing out on a critical benefit of a business and banker relationship.

• Q: What makes Enterprise different from the “big banks” and from the smaller community banks or credit unions?

A: When compared to large banks and smaller community banks, Enterprise Bank brings the “best of both worlds” to the New Hampshire banking environment. At a size of nearly $5 billion in assets and a legal lending limit to any one client of over $80 million, Enterprise has the bandwidth to meet the widest range of financing needs for businesses and not-for-profits. In addition, our technological and cash management products rival those of the largest banks. However, the level of customer service, accessibility, and responsiveness that our commercial lending team provides our clients rivals that which one would expect from smaller community banks. This is a critical element of what we bring to all our commercial lending relationships. Our clients expect and receive this level of responsiveness and accessibility from our commercial lending team in support of their banking needs.

• Q: If a company is not happy with its existing banking relationship, how easy is it to move its business to Enterprise?

A: Since opening our first branch in New Hampshire nearly 20 years ago, our Enterprise Bank team has helped thousands of clients relocate their banking relationships to us in a smooth and seamless fashion. This is as a result of the experience and dedication of our branch and lending teams who have years of experience in successfully onboarding new Enterprise Bank clients. Our New Hampshire team proactively takes a consultative approach in listening to our clients’ needs, recommending our products and services that meet those needs, and finally, setting those products and services up for our clients in such a way as to minimize the time and effort required from our clients to transfer their relationships.

Categories: Banking and Finance