New England Banks Honored With Prestigious Banking Choice Awards

Banks from Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island have been honored with the 2019 Banking Choice Awards in the categories of Customer Service, Technology & Tools, Community Contribution, and Overall Quality. They were presented at an awards luncheon as part of the Best Bank Expo at the MGM Springfield.

In addition, six banks have won best in Connecticut and Massachusetts in their respective categories. These statewide awards for 2019 are the highest honor any bank can achieve.

The prestigious Banking Choice Awards are presented by American Business Media and Customer Experience Solutions LLC. Unlike typical “popularity contests,” these awards are given based on interviews with hundreds of thousands of banking customers in a double-blind format. No financial institutions are involved in collecting the data, which is then used to create the highly respected Banking Benchmarks. Customer Experience Solutions is the recognized leader in measuring and tracking customer experience for banking institutions.

Vincent M. Valvo, president and CEO of American Business Media, said, “Customers can choose to bank wherever they want. The Banking Choice Awards determine which banks do it best.”

“There are many different elements to Customer Service and we track them all. These range from basic friendliness and personal touch to proactively identifying problems and solving them for customers,” Bruce A. Paul, president and CEO of Customer Experience Solutions, said.

Technology and Tools honors, Paul said, aren’t solely the dominion of large regional and national banks. “It is important to note that there are some much smaller banks that achieved very high ratings on their technology. Though they may have much smaller IT budgets than the biggest banks, what sets them
apart is their ability to engage and train customers on the technology that they have. Over and over across the region, we see that what separates the best tech banks from the rest is the training that their own staff has on the tools.”

Earning the Community Contribution award is significant because it’s based on input from people who are not customers of those institutions. “Unlike the other categories, this is a rating by prospects (non-customers) of each bank. So, to win top prize, banks had to not only make strong contributions to their local areas, but they also had to get the word out about that contribution,” Paul said. “The winners in this category are not only great contributors but are also great marketers as well. You can see from the diversity of top performers that massive marketing spend does not always translate into prospects’ minds, but very strategic spend does. This is how a smaller bank can compete with and sometimes outperform much bigger banks.”

The Overall Quality recognition encompasses many of the higher-order areas of the banking relationship, like avoiding problems or fixing them quickly and openly, proactively offering services to customers that improve their financial lives and having staff that are confident enough to do so, Paul said, adding that it often reflects staff that are extremely well trained to help meet every need.

Massachusetts Statewide Winners
Cape Cod 5 Bank was the statewide winner in Massachusetts in two categories: Overall Quality and Customer Service. Paul said, “It’s remarkable that one bank was able to capture more than one top spot. That’s a rare situation indeed.” Cornerstone Bank was named best in Massachusetts in Technology while Cooperative Bank of Cape Cod took home the stop spot for Community Contribution.

Connecticut Statewide Winners
The Nutmeg State also has a dual-category award winner. Thomaston Savings Bank was named Best in Connecticut for Overall Quality and Technology & Tools. Berkshire Bank won the top spot for Customer Service while Chelsea Groton was named best in state for its Community Contribution.

About American Business Media
American Business Media (www.ambizmedia.com/) connects business professionals across the country in effective, unique and high-quality ways through a collection of in-person, print, and digital products that are unparalleled in their reach. American Business Media is proud to be the nation's largest producer of banking, credit union and mortgage conferences.
About Customer Experience Solutions

Customer Experience Solutions (www.cescx.com) provides banks the insight they need when it comes to understanding customer benchmarks. From measurements of perception of overall quality and customer service to the ease-of-use of technology and bank practices to evaluation of levels of loyalty and vulnerability, Customer Experience Solutions creates custom CX programs that provide banks with a wide range of insights into the customer and prospect experience within their competitive environment.

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