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Bay Area Bank Strengthens Customer Focus using Culture Analytics

Bay Area Bank Strengthens Customer Focus using Culture Analytics

A large locally-owned bank needed to strengthen its customer focus, but had no way of benchmarking or measuring progress on this initiative. See how culture analytics provided direction and helped the company achieve its goals.

About the company

Founded in 1964, this bank is one of the oldest locally-owned banks in California. They rank in the top 10 Best Places to Work in the Bay Area, and they’re committed to providing a second-to-none community banking experience. 

Industry:

Financial Services

Number of employees:

500

Solution:

Culture Analytics

Challenge

This bank’s goal was to increase customer-focused values and behaviors across the organization. But, as with any culture initiative, knowing where to begin was the biggest challenge. The company first had to answer key questions, including:

  • How strong is our customer focus today?
  • Is customer focus reflected in our communication and programs?
  • Where do we have opportunities for improvement?

The leaders of this initiative needed a tool to capture the behaviors and values that make up their CutlureDNA™, and then measure alignment – or cultural strength – across the company.

Solution

In 2015, the company began using the OutMatch culture analytics tool (previously called Pomello) to measure their behaviors, values, and overall cultural strength.

The initial benchmark showed that the company’s culture was moderately aligned, but that customer focus was not their most represented value.

Over the next year, the company adjusted their communication and incentive programs to align with a more customer-focused approach, then they measured culture again to evaluate progress.

Results

In year one, the company’s culture strength score was 82%, which showed medium risk in terms of cultural alignment. By year two, the culture strength score had improved to 90%, putting them in the low-risk category.

Within one year, the company had improved their culture strength score by 8 points. They had also strengthened alignment around customer focus, which was now their most represented value. 

Analytics also showed that being customer oriented and listening to customers had become the company’s most represented behaviors.

Additional findings

While overall culture strength had improved, the culture analytics tool uncovered a serious gap in customer focus, which threatened to derail the success of the cultural initiative. After one year, only two of the company’s three functional groups had made the adjustment to a more customer-focused culture.

This drove deeper analysis into why one group was not adopting the new culture, and empowered the company to make necessary adjustments to ensure that customer focus was represented across the entire organization. 

Without culture analytics, the company wouldn’t have been able to drive progress on a critical culture initiative. Today, the company continues to maintain a culture strength score of 90% or better, and has successfully solidified customer focus as a core value.

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