Banks among country's most respected corporations
BRIDGEWATER - Giving its clientele the air of a comfortable banking experience is a huge reason why two local branch managers believe their parent corporations are among the most respected in Canada.
Recently Canadian chief executive officers ranked the Royal Bank of Canada - this country's oldest bank - and Toronto Dominion-Canada Trust as number 2 and number 5 respectively out of 25 major corporations. Bombardier took the honour of being crowned number 1.
The corporations were graded on long-term investment values, quality of products and services, human resources management, service development, financial performance and corporate and social responsibilities.
Bill McInnis, branch manager of Bridgewater's Toronto Dominion-Canada Trust for the past 23 years, credits customer service as a reason why his clientele keep coming back.
"What TD kept, and what a lot of people like, is the customer service reps. People really like the personal touch," he said, adding the bank has increased hours for Saturday business.
He said his bank has made increasing strides to receive as much customer feedback as possible.
"For instance if you came into the bank today, there's a chance you will be called tomorrow and asked how things went. Then our employees are rated according to the feedback. That's really important."
On a national level, TD has made many successful attempts to retain high calibre employees and boost morale which has allowed it to improve its human resources ranking at a time when it is still integrating its operation with Canada Trust, which it took over last year.
The Bridgewater branch has just completed renovations related to the takeover.
Beyond the business of banking is being active in the local community, Mr. McInnis said. Every year staff participates in many community events including the annual Terry Fox Run.
Financial institutions are continuing to put more emphasis on the ease of multi-faceted banking. TD-Canada Trust and Royal Bank are no exceptions with telephone, internet and ATM options.
TD has also focused on maintaining its employees are at the top of their game.
"Every representative licensed to sell investments - and this is primarily mutual funds and discount brokerage accounts - they have to write an exam every year if they don't pass, they don't sell mutual funds."
Bridgewater's Royal Bank branch manager Jerry Rankin said it's as important the general public rates them as equally as the CEOs.
"There's a corporate and social responsibility here," he said. "We are part of this community and we try to give them the best products and services and advice."
Mr. Rankin, seven years as branch manger, said he encourages staff to give back to their communities.
Many take part in the annual Bowl for Kids' Sake sponsored by Big Brothers and Big Sisters.
"In the last 16 years they have raised over $26,000 and they really do look forward to doing that every year. It's really a team effort here in terms of giving and serving our communities," Mr. Rankin said.
Like TD, the Royal Bank offers employees bonuses based on certain targets such as customer satisfaction, and a chance for employees to invest in the company's stock.
"We stay in constant contact with our clients. It could be simply to locate clients whom we feel are paying more service charges than they should and give them financial advice.
"We've moved away from responsive and taken on a proactive approach. People appreciate the financial and business advice and that all has to do with service."
|Dec 26, 2001|
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