When Chelsea Groton Bank implemented COCC’s iWorkstation infrastructure, it did so with the intention of running the institution more efficiently and securely with an eye towards future growth and technology capability. At that time, the bank had no idea just how critical this update would prove to be when the COVID-19 pandemic hit.
Chelsea Groton, a $1.1 billion institution headquartered in Groton, CT, had implemented iWorkstation prior to the pandemic in order to increase its technology flexibility. The platform provides the institution with a secure, scalable, private cloud operating through the COCC datacenters. Using thin client terminals onsite, the Chelsea Groton team is able to access virtual machines securely without being tethered to an individual computer or station. “We transformed our entire architecture and technology,” said Jennifer Pensa, EVP, Director of Operations and Technology at Chelsea Groton.
With data and infrastructure running through a private cloud hosted by COCC, the iWorkstation solution makes the institution more agile with its service, security, and staffing. Working with COCC to launch the platform, Chelsea Groton was able to institute this new technology to specifically fit their needs.
“With each phase of the implementation, COCC was willing to pivot with us in a way that would benefit us and not leave us out on a limb,” Pensa said. “This flexibility and partnership continues to blow us away.”
The flexibility and agility provided by iWorkstation enabled the bank to adapt its practices to better serve its customers and execute its plans. Bankers were able to start a transaction on the teller line and seamlessly transition a customer to a platform conversation. The IT team was able to focus on the banks strategic initiatives instead of hardware maintenance. Business continuity planning and security were enhanced. The bank and its employees were 100% mobile, from retail to lending to operations, both in-branch and remote. That mobility kicked into high gear when the COVID-19 pandemic took hold in Connecticut.
Thanks to the infrastructure provided by iWorkstation and the Velo cloud, Chelsea Groton was able to act quickly to move the majority of its non-branch workforce to a remote work status without interrupting customer service. It started with the bank’s call center, which moved completely remote in early March. Two weeks later, Chelsea Groton had moved its entire non-branch staff to a remote status. The bank leveraged technology ranging from laptops, printers, headsets and soft phones, getting its employees up and running from home quickly and securely without needing to run significant upgrades to their home networks. With virtual machines the bank was able to operate efficiently, securely, and sometimes at an increased capacity, from outside the office.
“Because we’ve been able to get people remote, we’ve been able to keep all our employees and keep them working on projects that are meaningful to the bank and our customers,” Pensa commented. “We can still service our customers in real time.”
With the bank’s infrastructure having been more efficient prior to the pandemic and with the remote operations flowing smoothly, Ms. Pensa is confident that this technology will push the bank forward in the future. “It has changed who we are and who we can be as a bank. I feel that when we come back from the pandemic, we will be more efficient as a team.”
About Chelsea Groton
- 14 Locations
- $1.1 Billion in Assets
- Headquarters: Groton, CT
Chelsea Groton Bank is a full-service mutually owned bank with over $1.1 billion in assets. Chelsea Groton Bank’s products and services include consumer banking, business banking, mortgage and business lending, cash management, financial planning and financial education classes. With 14 branch locations throughout New London County and a Loan Production Office in Hartford County, Chelsea Groton Bank also provides online and mobile banking, 24-hour telephone banking, and nationwide ATM banking for individuals, families and businesses.