The small gathering of savvy local businessmen who opened Piedmont Federal Savings Bank in 1903 would be enormously proud of the 2019 version of their company, and its ever-enduring commitment to serving the local market with the same passion those original founders so richly embraced over one hundred years ago.
A steadfast initial mission to “help individuals and families achieve the dream of home ownership and build financial assets” still rings true, and although Piedmont Federal has expanded across the Triad through the years, it has remained a trusted source for local families and business owners – whom bank employees are proud to know, and call, by name! From home loans at every life stage, to savings plans for college and retirement, the Piedmont commitment is the same.
As the oldest financial institution founded in Winston – and still in existence – Piedmont Federal’s team knows customer service will always be the heart and soul of its continued success, and that commitment to customers is absolutely front and center in the roles of every team member.
Chief Marketing Officer Ginger Salt calls impeccable customer service the “chief” attribute of the business, and the first line in every job description, whether employees are directly serving customers, or supporting the efforts of other employees.
“As a senior management team, customer service is our top priority – both internally and externally – and it guides both our decisions and our strategy,” she explains.
To better understand Piedmont Federal’s commitment to customer service – and just what makes their strategies successful – take a look at their “Top Ten” ways to focus on each and every customer – and why this established savings bank is a perfect match for you and your family.
Top 10 Ways Piedmont Federal Focuses on Customer Service
- Excellent customer service is their #1 responsibility as described in every job description, from the company’s CEO to each member of their support staff.
- Exploring “What Does Extraordinary Customer Service Mean?” is part of every new hire’s detailed orientation – and is delivered by Piedmont Federal President, Mike Hauser. Skills such as active listening, responsiveness, and intelligent problem solving are taught from day one.
- Customer service is an important element in every employee’s performance review. An entire set of values in the review, under the heading “Mindset of Customer Service,” speaks to direct and honest communication, a strong sense of duty, and timely response to problem resolution. Superior customer service is simply expected of all employees – and to both internal and external customers.
- Customer-centric technology is a top priority, and Piedmont Federal invests in technology that helps their customers. From CardValet®, which allows customers to control their debit card usage (turn it on/off and set limits), to depositing checks through their mobile phone, and person-to-person transfer capabilities, Piedmont is focused on increased day-to-day convenience, more options, and greater efficiency.
- Piedmont Federal also has a Customer Bill of Rights, which outlines their accountability to customers in detail.
- The bank’s loan officers are engaged in the loan process from start to finish, side-by-side with customers from origination through loan closing, and beyond. Loans are closed at the Piedmont branch where the customer began the loan – which adds a level of security and satisfaction for each client.
- The team communicates with its customers regularly to ensure they are happy with their accounts, their banking needs are being met, and they have all the necessary information to make the best financial decisions to match their goals.
- Relevant products and services are provided for consumers. Through conversations with customers, small business owners and operators, focus groups, and other local consumer research, Piedmont has gained an understanding of what folks need and value so products and services are tailored according to those needs.
- Piedmont Federal is proud to offer a straight-forward approach – you won’t find rows and rows of fine print or a “bait and switch” mentality here – just honest efforts to ensure customers understand exactly what they are getting.
- As a customer of Piedmont Federal, you’ll soon discover you are so much more than a number. They offer direct access to local resources. Translation: you won’t be transferred to multiple departments and your issue will be handled by a real live person! Even in non-customer facing roles, management members incorporate the tenants of superior customer service in everyday interactions. Those positive results keep Piedmont Federal relevant, compliant, and high-performing – a culmination of carrying out the company’s mission, vision, and values!
Piedmont Federal Savings Bank’s home office is located at 201 South Stratford Road in Winston-Salem, 336-770-1000. Learn more about their services at piedmontfederal.bank.
Whether a branch needs promotional items and branded materials for an event, or customer insights in the market, Chief Marketing Officer Ginger Salt and her team are there to help. Internally, they may create presentations, produce flyers, conduct focus groups or develop a branch optimization plan. Their other customers include the organizations Piedmont supports in our communities; contributing financially, through volunteer efforts, or a combination of both, they are committed to helping our neighbors. You’ll find the Piedmont team teaching financial literacy classes, walking in charity events, and sponsoring art competitions in local schools.
For Chief Risk and Compliance Officer, Sandra Gaskell, customer service translates into making sure that Piedmont Federal adheres to regulations to protect customers and the bank. By ensuring compliance and managing risk, Piedmont maintains its reputation and perpetuates trust in the community. Sandra is also committed to finding ways of unburdening customers with the complexities of bank regulation, while still achieving compliance. She also oversees vendor management (selecting reputable vendors to assist with product/service delivery), monitoring customer privacy, and business continuity (ensuring the bank can function and serve customers during an emergency.)
Chief Human Resources Officer, Filomena Wampler, and her team work to provide superior customer service to Piedmont Federal’s employee base. Human Resources is responsible for hiring employees with proven customer service abilities, and building quality teams within the bank. They have maintained a culture of fairness and respect among staff, with an open-door policy that provides guidance and advice to employees, while realizing the importance of exceptional benefits and a positive work environment.