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FOS Blog

12 Jul

Boomers: We’re Gonna Rock Your World

Boomers: We’re Gonna Rock Your World…(psst…we’ve already started!)
Baby Boomers, the generation that changed the world is changing your banking world.  With over 500 boomers hitting retirement age every hour for the next decade and a half, have you prepared?

In case you haven’t noticed, much of your staff is of “boomer” age!  Succession planning should be at the top of your list as some of the late bloomers have already started to exit the work force.  It is important to understand the composition of your staff as well as your current and future staffing needs. If you don’t have in-house resources, consider engaging HR professions and recruiters to assist in locating the people that will take you into the future.

Not only is your workforce changing but so is your customer base.  It is important to understand the composition of and the current and anticipated needs of this evolving customer base.  Remember, not only are the boomers needs changing but so are the needs of the millennials….oh and the Gen Xers are entering the market as first time consumers (another blog for another time).  Boomers are living a longer, more active life.  Are you addressing their primary concerns?

  • Retirement planning and wealth management
  • Funding and maintaining their current lifestyle
  • Healthcare continuance

And as your customer base changes, so must your banking and compliance environment.  Adapting to those changes will impact the strategic direction of the bank.  Staffing, technology and compliance resources will be impacted as we expand or contract our market area, product and service mixes and the way we do business to address the needs of our customer base.  Have you thought about…?

  • Elder abuse. As the boomers move into retirement, they will become targets of elder abuse. Have you adequately educated your staff on identifying this type of abuse? Is it incorporated into fraud, BSA AML, ID Theft and security training?  Are you analyzing SAR trends within your geographic region to get ahead of potential problems?
  • Technology needs. Boomers are tech savvy and on the go.  Are you capable of retaining their loyalty with your current mix of E-Banking and Mobile Banking services?  Are your tech resources robust enough to handle this change?
  • Downsizing and relocation to more urban areas. Most boomers will be empty nesters at some point and will look to downsize.  Lifestyle changes and needs draw this population closer to urban areas.  Is your footprint the right sized to target these demographic changes?  Are you investing in areas that are attracting boomers and the next generations?  How will this impact your risk profiles for BSA AML, fair lending and ID theft?  What is the impact on your CRA assessment area and performance? Is your branch network strategically situated?
  • Product and Service Mix. Boomers have a growing need for retirement planning and investment vehicles.  Home equity products become more important to boomer lifestyles as a means of funding downsizing, luxury purchases such as vehicles, checking off bucket list items, providing financial assistance to children and grandchildren, or to even start new ventures or small businesses.  Do you have the right product mix in place?  How is the competition reacting to these changes?  Are we technologically capable of handling new and innovative products and services?
  • Marketing. Are we reaching our boomers through the right channels?  Are we  locating our brand where the boomer is living, moving and consuming?  How are our products and services marketed?  As the boomer is lifestyle oriented and on the move, product descriptions should be reflective of that joie de vie….titling as “senior” or “silver” may not be attractive to the boomer.

Just some points to ponder…now bring on those millennials!