Consider the Total Relationship for Banking Services

2018 Alliance sponsor article courtesy of First Citizens Bank

As a medical practitioner, you can benefit from treating banking as a total relationship rather than a series of small transactions, especially in the current economic environment.

Your time is better spent running your practice, rather than shopping for the best bank value. When you have a good relationship with a bank, the financial institution has an incentive to offer you better deals. Bankers want to see your practice grow. When they know your goals and understand your needs, they can offer the products and services that will help you accomplish your goals faster and much more efficiently.

So how do you decide which bank gets to have this important relationship with you and your business?

Start by examining what you want in a banking relationship. All businesses require different services from their banks. Medical businesses are no different. Your greatest need might be standard transactions like checking accounts or credit card processing. But you may also need a financial institution that offers a variety of options for raising capital or that provides electronic services.

Once you’re comfortable with the traditional features banks offer, dig a little deeper. Ask the following questions:

  • Does the bank truly understand the distinct banking needs of busy medical professionals? First Citizens, for example, has a long history of serving small to mid-sized businesses and specializes in managing the complex financial needs of new, established and expanding healthcare businesses.
  • Will the bank help you save and earn money by maximizing options for handling your funds? Medical practices and other healthcare businesses often deal with the complexities of collecting payments from patients and insurance companies on a timely basis. Managing cash flow can be a real challenge. Look for deposit accounts that meet your needs or cash management features that make the most of your resources.
  • Does the bank offer a variety of services, like trust or leasing, providing you with more choices and flexibility in financial services?
  • Does the bank provide a variety of financing options? Maybe you need a real estate loan for a new medical building or a lease to finance a medical equipment upgrade. It might be time to finance a “buy-in” or start up of a practice. For short-term operating needs, a business equity line of credit may be the right move. Whatever your financial goals and objectives, your banker can serve as a trusted advisor and help you map out a successful course of action. Make sure your bank can provide timely, convenient access to these types of loans and credit services.
  • Can the bank meet your personal banking needs? Your financial institution should provide a full spectrum of personal banking products — residential mortgages, residential equity lines of credit, premium service checking accounts and even wealth management services to maximize the effect of your financial assets, minimize taxes and plan for the future.
  • Do you receive individual service and attention you require? Your banker should be willing to meet with you when it’s convenient for you – whether at lunchtime, after hours or on weekends. A banker should also work in close cooperation with attorneys, accountants or other professional advisors to provide proper integration of financial, legal and other matters of importance. It’s important that bank customers receive the same high level of attention and service that you provide your own patients.
  • Finally, is the bank stable and solid? Has it stood the test of time? Does it make sound business decisions? Is the stewardship of customers’ money among its highest priorities? First Citizens Bank, for example, has been around 120 years and is the largest family-controlled bank in the United States. First Citizens brings a special understanding to the challenges and opportunities faced by medical professionals, company owners and managers.

Whether you are just starting out, looking for a new bank for your established practice or simply wanting to evaluate how well your current bank is meeting your needs, asking some questions from these areas can produce a clear picture of what you need from a bank, even in these challenging economic times.

For more information, contact Andy Shene, Charlotte Metro Area Executive for First Citizens Bank, 704.338.3926. First Citizens Bank. Forever First. ® Member FDIC.

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