Working at a bank has a number of benefits, but it’s important to consider a number of factors involved in the occupation, especially when it comes to the work environment. In general banks endeavor to be professional, courteous, and meticulous, and these are qualities that are demanded of their employees. The fact that they are often dealing with large sums of money and strict deadlines makes banks very chaotic and challenging as places to work. But there are a number of variables to take into account.
Big Or Small?
Banks range in size from small local establishments to multi-national conglomerates that have hundreds of different branches. Both of these categories have similar and different responsibilities relating to the kinds of patrons that the bank attracts. Big banks, like the Royal Bank of Canada or the Bank of America, have thousands of different locations across their countries, and tend to have a very standardized way of doing business. Big banks also tend to deal with companies, and these duties can include managing mergers and other high-profile clientele.
Working at a big bank could also include manning internet or phone services related to the company. Most large banks offer a 24-hour customer service help line to assist with financial problems or transactions and as a result there is the possibility of acquiring a variety of day and night shifts.
Working for a big bank has its advantages. For example, most big banks use a standardized method of handling transactions which means you can work at any branch of that bank. As an employee you’ll have health and dental plans, and the opportunity to work in successful world of banking. There is some charm in working for smaller regionalized banks as well. Smaller banks have a somewhat more intimate relationship with their clients, and you end up getting to know your customers a lot better. This is in contrast to the somewhat more formal approach when working in a big bank, where you might have hundreds of clients.
Working at a smaller bank also has less responsibility, and a slightly more relaxed and casual atmosphere where duties are more personal. These can include helping individuals with withdrawals, loans, and other transactions affiliated with their personal or business finances. It may also include working with licenses and mortgages, and informing customers of offers or deals.
Unlike banks, credit unions are cooperative organizations where members pool their finances. This allows them to help fund each other. They are primarily non-profit, and are designed to facilitate local economies that are decentralized from big banking corporations.
As a result, the membership for a credit union is usually based on geography, and there is a much more laissez-faire approach to banking. The working environment in a credit union can be equally stressful and difficult, but in general they enjoy a higher level of interpersonal interaction with their employees and customers.
The disadvantages of belonging to a credit union include the fact there are often far fewer ATMs at which to deposit or withdraw money. Unlike big banks that usually have 24-hour service, working at a credit union usually entails far fewer working hours and no night shifts.