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Peoples Bank Leverages Salesforce and nCino to Evolve Technology with Rapid Growth

By 08.31.23
Reading time: 3 minutes

Peoples Bank started in 1910 in Northwest Indiana as a small community bank and has grown to an asset size of $2.1 billion. Headquartered in Munster, Indiana, Peoples Bank serves customers and communities across Northwest Indiana and Chicagoland with a wide range of consumer, business, and wealth management products.

Lacking visibility across disparate systems 

Over the last ten years, Peoples Bank experienced rapid growth by acquiring five financial institutions. To stay competitive in the marketplace, the bank’s technology had to evolve as it went from being a smaller community bank to serving a much larger customer base with a more diverse set of demographics. 

Peoples Bank had an accelerated timeline because it was sunsetting some of its core CRM and underwriting systems that were coming to the end of their contract terms. The bank was using a credit underwriting platform for its loan origination and was looking for a better “application to close” solution for its commercial loans. 

Dan Nieman, VP, Salesforce and nCino Product Manager at Peoples Bank, said another issue they faced was data being siloed, and that business units needed more insight across departments.

“We were looking for a new system that was easy to use and that all departments could access for visibility. The bank evaluated multiple CRM platforms and concluded that Salesforce was the best-in-class solution,” said Nieman.

Building Salesforce systems for a unified view across business units

Peoples Bank chose to partner with Silverline because it appreciated its industry point of view and expertise based on real-world banking experience.

The initial implementation was conducted over an eight-month period to allow Peoples Bank enough time to start to sunset its old systems and not lose any functionality or have a gap in service. Implementation focused on several high-priority objectives: 

  • Implement Salesforce Financial Services Cloud for Peoples Bank’s retail, wealth, mortgage, treasury management, and business banking sales teams as a single source of reference. Each business unit has a customized view of its workflow.
  • Implement nCino for commercial lending, credit, and commercial loan processing to have a complete end-to-end customer journey within Salesforce.
  • Create Peoples Bank’s first Customer Solutions Center (CSC) platform to centralize and track leads, as well as manage referral activity and Compliance workflows. Previously, these processes were done via email.

“Salesforce was the best solution to solve our technology problems and unify our sales teams through one single platform. It gives us a more comprehensive vision of our customers’ financial journeys,” said Julie Bonnema, VP, Digital Transformation Manager at Peoples Bank.

Improving loans with reduced application to close time

“With all our sales teams now live in Salesforce, we’re able to track cross-departmental efforts and needs more efficiently,” said Nieman. “We’re getting data into the hands of the sales teams and leads more visually and quickly than in the past. We have dashboards that our sales teams can utilize to make decisions more rapidly.” 

nCino has allowed Peoples Bank to automate many of its approval processes for commercial loans, and its workflow has helped the bank reduce the application to close time by 20 days since nCino was first implemented.

“Knowing our Salesforce platform was able to achieve this for the business really makes the investment pay off. We’re more efficient and moving loans through more quickly than we’ve ever moved them,” said Bonnema. 

Bonnema also likes having a targeted list of improvement areas, such as lead rate conversion, pipeline reporting, and cross-departmental lead tracking. The Peoples Bank team uses Salesforce’s next best action feature to monitor engagement and its growth.   

“Having access to real-time data has been transformational and not something we would be able to do without these platforms,” said Bonnema. 

Ensuring future Salesforce growth

Peoples Bank is now working with Silverline for its managed services. “We have a great relationship with Silverline where we work in sprints to enact change over a longer period of time,” said Nieman. “We roadmap out a change for a one- or two-quarter time frame, and then break that into three-week sprints where we’re constantly enacting change.” 

The next Salesforce initiatives for Peoples Bank include:

  • Eliminating manual spreadsheets and sharing by email 
  • Working towards a better product visualizer and Einstein heat mapping to facilitate customer decisioning
  • Integrating online account opening with Salesforce
  • Continuing to add bank departments to the Salesforce platform for visibility, communication, and operational efficiencies

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