For owners of medical and dental practices, we know that your investment goes far beyond the financial. That’s why it’s important to partner with a bank that understands and values your practice, supports your physicians and employees, and evolves with your needs. When choosing your banking partner, consider the following:
1. Is your bank strong and sustainable?
A bank’s strength and stability are measured in two ways:
- A bank’s credit rating provides an independent indication of the safety of its deposits. This rating should be published by one of the three major rating agencies — S&P, Moody’s or Fitch — and ranked, at a minimum, above investment grade (that is, BBB or higher).
- A bank’s performance in capital stress tests can also provide invaluable insight into its safety and stability. The results of this testing demonstrate a bank’s resilience and ability to continue serving clients during periods of economic stress. Capital stress test results should be published annually so that prospective clients can compare results to those of other financial institutions.
2. Is your bank committed to excellence in client service?
There are three key things to look for when determining a bank’s quality of service:
A financial institution should demonstrate a firm understanding of a medical practice’s unique cash flow needs, how its funding structure works, its budgetary demands and the challenges the executive team faces in satisfying these demands.
How quickly does a bank respond to a practice’s financial needs? Are capital requirements met in a timely and efficient manner? Everything — from tracking an important wire transfer to helping finance an expansion project — should be addressed with speed and efficiency.
A medical practice’s financial partner should be easily accessible to answer questions; provide training on any account-related technologies; and offer insights into how it can meet the practice’s banking, financing and treasury management needs. Before deciding on a banking partner, practices should ask for references to review financial institutions and their individual bankers.
3. Does your bank have a long history of serving medical practices?
The financial partner, along with the individual banker at the forefront of the relationship, should have long-term experience serving medical practices to ensure a deep knowledge and understanding of the unique challenges they face.
To gauge the depth and breadth of the bank’s and bankers’ experience with medical practices, questions around years of experience and the number of organizations served should be addressed.
In addition, it’s important to understand the nature of the relationship the practice will have with the bank. Crucial to its success will be having a dedicated, single point of contact to address the organization’s unique needs and anticipate any challenges that may arise. Ideally, the organization will partner with a bank that has:
- Extensive experience working with medical practices, physicians and boards of directors
- A demonstrable track record of supporting the communities in which the medical practice’s patients and employees live and work
- An approach to doing business that shows it understands the importance of quality care
4. Does your bank offer products and services to address the unique financial needs of your practice?
Alongside expertise, your financial partner should offer thoughtful products and services that meet the unique needs of a medical practice when looking at the full financial profile. Ideally, a medical practice would have a trusted partner that fully supports its banking, lending needs and also provides access to non-banking investment management needs.
5. Does your bank offer products and services to take care of your most important asset: your people?
Meeting the financial needs of those who work to support the practice and its success should be a top priority for any bank working with medical practices. These needs may encompass personal banking and lending products and additional financial offerings that benefit those who support the organization.
At First Republic Bank we have extensive experience working with the medical profession and can offer tailored advice and solutions to help support the success of your practice. Like you, we value safety, stability and sustainability, as demonstrated by our very strong credit ratings and capital stress test results. We recognize the peace of mind this strength provides when choosing a banking partner.
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