How Peapack-Gladstone Bank Was Prepared For a Pandemic
Peapack-Gladstone Bank is a deeply rooted New Jersey community bank with nearly $5.8 billion in assets as of March 31, 2020. Since its founding in 1921, the Bank has been focused on helping its clients grow, accumulate, and protect their assets, while managing their wealth distribution. Peapack-Gladstone Bank’s three core products—wealth management, deposits, and lending—have helped its clients achieve their financial goals through the exceptional service provided.
In March 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Peapack-Gladstone Bank found itself facing the unprecedented challenges of a global crisis that curtailed normal business operations. The business-critical challenges brought on by the pandemic changed the way Peapack-Gladstone Bank thought about its business operations priorities, and how it linked those objectives to business strategies.
Being able to quickly see critical items in its business continuity plan was imperative and time sensitive. To ensure safe and secure solutions to meet mandates for its regulators—and to protect its customers, its most important asset—the Bank turned to its WolfPAC partnership.
Luckily, pandemic preparedness was put in place years ago through the WolfPAC Integrated Risk Management platform. Beginning in 2012, the Bank implemented WolfPAC’s Enterprise Risk Assessment (ERA), Information Technology, Third-Party Risk Management, Customer Information, Compliance, Operational Risk, and Financial Reporting solutions. In 2015, this expanded to include WolfPAC’s Business Continuity Management solution.
With this strong foundation in place, Peapack-Gladstone Bank used WolfPAC’s carefully executed risk mitigation strategies, allowing the Bank to securely navigate this unchartered territory. As a result, the Bank was able to approach the pandemic with tremendous assurance and immediately stifle anticipated anxieties.
WolfPAC’s Risk Management solution provided predictive analytics and business intelligence, safeguarding Peapack-Gladstone Bank with an understanding of the critical risks for operating its business, and the ability for these areas to receive prioritized capital investments.
WolfPAC helped Peapack-Gladstone Bank with an integral part of its business strategy—operational resilience and risk management. This allowed the Bank to manage one of its most logistically challenging times with the utmost confidence, ensuring the safety and security of its clients and employees.
“Prior to 2015, our Bank did not have this risk analysis,” said Maureen Hemhauser, Executive Vice President, Chief Risk Officer and Head of Compliance, at Peapack-Gladstone Bank. “Part of the ensued success was knowing where the bigger threats to the business were, what investments were necessary, and which areas could be conquered before going to the board and executive management. The thorough risk analysis told us what was most important, allowing us to focus the institution and executive team on the most critical items. As a former federal examiner, who used to regularly review BCP and pandemic plans, I could not imagine a day when an institution would have to fully enact a pandemic plan; however, I am grateful that WolfPAC assisted us in developing such a comprehensive plan that we were immediately able to act on.”
Although the pandemic was unexpected, the outcome could have been very different if the Bank was not prepared with an effective risk management strategy through WolfPAC. By having the right business continuity plans and responses in place, Peapack-Gladstone Bank was able to swiftly analyze all critical items and manage the most important risk needs as they arose.