by Shayne Thomas
01 Jul 2020
Why First National Bank Alaska Decided to Overhaul Its Approach to Recruiting, Performance Management, and Learning
First National Bank Alaska (FNBA) has always been a community-minded, truly Alaskan organization in every way, shape, and form. “We believe in Alaska” is not only its commitment to the local community but also why the bank has received many accolades over the years, including being named “Best Place to Work” in Alaska. When the promise of “competitive salaries and a pleasant work environment” stands out so prominently in its mission, it’s not hard to see why the bank’s employees love working there so much. To keep up this positive momentum and build an organization ready to meet future challenges, FNBA needed the right HR tools and solutions in place.
- FNBA needed to replace its talent management system and wanted a single, user-friendly solution for applicant tracking, performance management, and learning.
- Recruiting in remote Alaska faces some unique limitations, making it even more important for the recruitment, hiring, and onboarding of new employees to be simple and seamless.
- COVID-19 happened right as FNBA rolled out Cornerstone Recruiting, teaching the bank some important lessons about recruiting and talent management during times of crisis.
Before coming to Cornerstone, FNBA used a talent management system that was, for all intents and purposes, a bit clunky. “We needed a platform that was intuitive, mobile-friendly, and easy-to-use on all fronts,” said Greta Little, FNBA’s Vice President, Senior HR Manager. “We needed a system that was flexible.”
But ease-of-use was only one part of the equation. FNBA needed to replace an end-to-end solution for recruiting, performance management, and learning. In other words, the bank was ready to make a fairly massive systems overhaul.
Then, on one serendipitous day at the HR Technology Conference and Expo in 2019, Little was blown away by a Cornerstone product demo. She was sold on-the-spot. It was then that she knew Cornerstone would be the best partner for advancing the bank’s HR transformation goals.
Within no time, FNBA agreed to make Cornerstone Recruiting, Cornerstone Performance, and Cornerstone Learning a big part of the bank’s future. And because Cornerstone offers a complete and fully scalable talent management solution, it was really a no-brainer for FNBA. As Little put it, “Cornerstone was the frontrunner from the very beginning.”
Improve efficiency. “We wanted something as easy as one, two, three,” explained Little. Cornerstone solutions are now a big part of the HR department’s lives. As a team of 15 employees, being on the same page at all times and operating in lock-step is absolutely critical—even more important a time when teams are working remotely more than ever before. “With Cornerstone, we’ll be able to tie all of the modules together,” emphasized Little. “Recruiters have found it easy to use; in fact, it’s making their lives a lot simpler.”
Simplify recruiting. “It used to take forever to do simple tasks,” lamented Little. What the team at FNBA has found is that now many once-tedious tasks can be managed with just a few simple clicks. This creates a better user experience for everyone involved. “Both external and internal applicants have been really happy with the application process,” said Little. And even though it has only been a few months since FNBA launched Cornerstone Recruiting—much less at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic—the bank’s HR team has nothing but positive feedback: “Everyone has been really happy with Cornerstone so far!”
Drive performance. “Our managers can now monitor goals better than ever before,” underscored Little. And even though the bank is still in the early stages of its Cornerstone Performance implementation, “all managers have expressed how easy it is to use!” The truth is, FNBA knew that Cornerstone could help them take their performance management program to the next level. Building out enhanced succession planning capabilities and being able to cascade performance goals from the top down were the bank’s two biggest priorities. Even though there’s still some work to do before FNBA’s new performance management program is firing on all cylinders, Little can’t deny that it’s already become a “more efficient process for everyone.”
Easy implementation. “Launching Cornerstone Recruiting has been the smoothest implementation we’ve ever gone through here at FNBA,” stated Little. “Implementation was smooth and easy, from the first kick-off call to working with the onboarding specialists—no hiccups whatsoever.” The same can be said for the recent launch of Cornerstone Performance and the upcoming launch of Cornerstone Learning. This is a big deal because implementing new solutions can be a big hurdle for many companies. Fortunately, Little was able to rely on her team to lead the charge and ensure that things stayed smooth and on-track every step of the way. “My team has been amazing,” said Little. “They are the day-to-day users, they needed to know how everything ticks; they made this implementation a breeze for us all.”
This is just the very beginning of FNBA’s journey with Cornerstone. “I’m really excited to get everything implemented,” said Little. “We pretty much bought the full suite of Cornerstone solutions—and we’re looking forward to getting the last few bits and pieces up and running before 2020 is over.” This includes the following:
- Building out a full, end-to-end talent and performance management program, with onboarding, compensation, and succession planning first on the to-do list.
- Launching Cornerstone Learning to power all training and onboarding, including its “Branch Training Progression” program, manager and supervisor training, new hire and benefits orientations, and much more.
- Upping the ante on compliance reporting for the executive team, including metrics on hiring, training completions, EEO reporting, and more.
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