WESTLAKE, Ohio—The new year will see credit unions focused on process automation, new market development and evolution of the delivery channel, according to one person’s forecast.
“To remain competitive, credit unions are prioritizing process improvements and technology enhancements that will benefit their members,” said Hyland’s Financial Services Solution Marketing Manager, Michelle Harbinak Shapiro. “In fact, nearly 70% of chief information officers from financial institutions said they plan to spend between 1% and 10% more on technology next year. The other third of respondents, which includes more than 300 individuals from various financial institutions, intend on growing their IT budgets by even more.”
Shapiro said that credit unions in 2018 are going to focus on expanding their current and potential membership by providing competitive and niche products, “continuously delivering outstanding service and fulfilling a specific community need that deepens brand awareness while attracting new members.”
She noted that credit unions are looking to remain committed to providing convenient methods of service delivery to their current and future members.
“This starts with transforming online account and loan application processes so members selecting these services enjoy excellent experiences,” Shapiro said.
Heading into the new year, Shapiro said Hyland’s client credit unions have a strong focus on overall operational and organizational efficiency.
“They are not abandoning their 2017 efforts. Instead, they are armed with a deeper understanding of what is vital to serve a more demanding generation of customers with fast, streamlined processes,” Shapiro said. “By doing so, these credit unions are better positioned to provide positive member experiences, while differentiating themselves and building long-lasting loyalty.”
Shapiro emphasized what the national CU data continues to show—that U.S. credit unions are continuing to thrive with the number of members and accounts on the rise.
“However, tremendous growth doesn’t come without challenges,” she said. “Growth initiatives put a lot of pressure on existing processes, systems and resources to keep up, and it means more competition to get ahead. As a result, our credit union clients have realized the huge importance of evaluating how to meet these new challenges with technology, such as content services platforms, and squeeze as much value as possible from existing systems and resources.”
Like most credit unions today, Shapiro said Hyland’s clients are concerned not only with the big banks, but with fintechs, as well.
With today’s growing non-traditional banking options, the stakes are high, said Shapiro.
“Credit unions will respond to increased and non-traditional competition by leveraging technology to make life easier for their employees as well as banking experiences superior for their members, well into the future,” she said. “To do this, credit unions will capitalize on innovative technology, like content services or enterprise content management, to improve member service and reduce operating costs. By using a robust information management solution that includes workflow software to capture information electronically and automatically route it through processes, notifying key stakeholders along the way, credit unions will increase the speed, accuracy and security of important processes like member onboarding, loan application reviews and wire transfers. Technology will continue to be the answer to achieving a competitive edge and providing the superior service members expect.
“Additionally, as is the case with many other industries, our clients are focused on security and how to keep their members’ information safe,” Shapiro said. “According to a recent study from the Ponemon Institute, the average cost of a data breach in the U.S. was $7.35 million. That equates to $225 per lost or stolen record—not to mention the cost of losing members, detecting, escalating and remediating the breach. Because security is a top priority, many technology providers like Hyland have employed security experts to monitor the security of products and proactively enhance the software to combat new threats.”