FAQs About Bank and Credit Union Facility Benchmarking
Here are some frequently asked questions about whether this benchmarking program is right for your organization.
- Why consider benchmarking?
- How does it work?
- How can it help me?
- What are the advantages of benchmarking?
- Why bother since we are planning to change all our branches?
- What does this program offer that others do not?
- What data is required?
- Does this mean I have to share confidential data?
- What does it cost?
- What staff time is required?
- What support will be provided?
Why consider benchmarking?
Benchmarking is a continuous improvement tool. If you do not believe that your operations can be improved then this approach is not for you. [top]
How does it work?
The benchmarking process starts with comparison. In this case, you compare size, cost, and other qualities of your buildings (headquarters and branches) with similar ones to identify which are performing better, worse, or about the same as the others.
Then you identify the underlying practices that seem to make the difference for those buildings performing better or worse. You select those practices that you would like to change for those buildings, make the changes, and repeat the benchmarking to measure progress. [top]
How can it help me?
It can identify areas where you have good performance, areas where performance is good enough that the opportunities are limited, and areas where performance improvements are potentially substantial. This helps you focus attention on those areas that most need it.
Benchmarking has been used by organizations to justify (to themselves or others) that a) their performance is comparable with the industry, or b) investment in change is required to be competitive. [top]
What are the advantages of benchmarking?
It is a low cost, low effort, approach that uses data you already have or want. It also uses your own real data (vs. a model) so all of the real world variables are included. An ongoing benchmarking program also documents actual performance changes due to specific operational changes. [top]
Why bother since we are planning to change all our branches?
Branches have been changing for years, and we understand that major changes are being considered by many organizations. But, these changes will not be overnight so you have opportunities to save costs on legacy buildings. You also have the opportunity to measure operations on the newer buildings as you implement them to measure, learn, and improve the performance of these. [top]
What does this program offer that others do not?
This program is the same one that has been offered in other industries for over 10 years, now available to let you specifically benchmarking financial branch facilities. It provides a easy to use interface for data collection, a proven structure for comparison of facility-standard data for a class of facility, intuitive results charts, run by facility professionals. The program also includes a steering committee, comprised of participants who determine changes/additions to the program based upon current topics of interest to the group.
If you are only interested in benchmarking your headquarters office building, we recommend you instead consider the BOMA Experience Exchange Report. [top]
What data is required?
The data required will include size, occupancy, use, and costs by building for those properties you wish to include in the benchmarking (you may have a couple you want to exclude for some reason). As noted above, the group may wish to include other related information of interest. If you do not provide data on a particular section, your organization will not be included in those results. [top]
Does this mean I have to share confidential data?
No. The data that is shared is all aggregated for your organization and is little different than that included in your required reporting (other than being more tightly structured for valid comparisons). A code ID is assigned to each participating organization and not shared with others by us. We also do not expect to have any truly confidential types of data to be included and you can chose to omit data you do not wish to share.
We do not resell or otherwise share participant data with third parties. All participants are required to agree to our terms of service, including a code of conduct to respect the confidentiality of the program. [top]
What does it cost?
For most intermediate size banks and credit unions, the annual cost of this program is typically less than 1% of the median annual operating cost of a single branch building. [top]
What staff time is required?
It will depend a little on the skills of your staff person and your accounting practices. You should expect that it will take a few days to pull the data from your accounting system and review/clean it for benchmarking use. Entering data into the system and reviewing it should take less than a half day. Then you should plan a couple days for a senior person to participate on the webinars and review the reports to understand the results and identify the actions you wish to consider. [top]
What support will be provided?
We are available by phone and email throughout the program for any related questions or issues. We will provide a one-on-one kick-off session (typically GoToMeeting) with your selected staff members to overview the program and do some initial data review. We are available (within reason) to coach your data assembly. We will also provide a one-on-one session to review the results with you. Additional support, data analysis, and project management are available as additional services if desired. [top]