People running a business are often so busy managing day-to-day operations that it can be difficult to find time to bone up on business issues like strategic planning. But now Regions Bank has partnered with Inc. Magazine and The Build Network to launch a new Commercial Insights website, www.regions.com/commercialinsights, that provides free access to information on topics such as finance, operations, business planning, risk management and business innovation.
Mississippi area president for Regions Bank Arthur DuCote said the intention behind Commercial Insights is simple: “When our customers are successful, we are successful. We are very proactive in searching for tools that help make our customers be successful. We now have the medium to do that on our Internet site.”
Commercial Insights includes commentary from Regions’ subject matter experts such as Regions’ Chief Economist Richard Moody, who discusses issues such as the economic outlook and how business can be positioned for the direction of economic growth. There are also a plethora of articles from Inc. Magazine and The Build Network.
The website is not password protected, so the information is available to anyone—not just customers of Regions Bank. One of the advantages of having the information available on a website is that it can be accessed from any place with an Internet connection. For example, someone who is waiting for a flight at an airport can take the time to do some research.
DuCote compared Commercial Insights to going into an airport and buying a business magazine to read on the plane. If you buy a magazine, you have to flip through it to find content that might be helpful to you.
“The magic piece behind this is it is organized for you so you can pick the information you are interested in and choose only that,” DuCote said.
“If you are interested in a certain subject like hiring key executives, you can go right to it. It is a way of taking all of the content out there that is needed and wanted by business owners, and consolidating it. It works for Inc. and The Build Network as it is a way for them to generate income. So, it is a good partnership. The media providers are keeping up with how users want information. It is evolving, and it changes rapidly. This is one way we can partner with them, meet our customers need, and land on high ground for everybody.”
Robert Leard, a senior vice president who heads up Regions’ commercial banking in Mississippi, said Commercial Insights is another tool for Regions to help customers identify and reach financial goals.
“This puts us in a position to be in an advisory capacity and ultimately build long-term relationships where the bank, the customers and communities are more successful,” Leard said.
“Keep in mind, the idea is not to put the information behind a sign in or firewall. You don’t even have to be Regions’ client. The idea is anyone can access it from anywhere. We are pulling together a wide range of strategic and tactical information about how to manage finances. A customer sitting in an airport with a tablet or iPad can pull up the information, think about it and use it to effectively move their business forward in their down time.”
Often it can be hard for business people to step back from the daily grind of work and think strategically.
“It happens to us in banking, and for clients, it is the same thing,” Leard said. “You get so focused on what is on your desk today that it is hard to think two, three or four years ahead. Go in and look at more strategic suggestions about long-term goals. There is a lot of value in that. None of us in business do that as well as we could or should. The most valuable thing I would suggest is to use the information to set long term goals, and look at it from a strategic planning standpoint.”
In addition to strategic planning, other key areas covered in the website include:
» A comprehensive risk assessment can reveal what risks your company is facing and how to deal with them. A recent study by the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) suggests that companies are taking a closer look at operational risk
» The Business Resource Center has featured articles such as The Sales Metrics You Should Be Focusing On, Your Company’s Financial Roadmap, in Just 3 Steps, and 3 things Your Employees Want More Than Money.
» Small Business Calculators has calculations for issues such as how much you need to start a business, whether you should buy or lease equipment, what loan terms should be chosen, whether you should get a loan or a line of credit, whether leasing or purchasing a business location is best, and what your business is worth today.
The site’s content library will consistently grow, featuring editorial content designed to keep clients and prospects engaged.
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