Turn to IT to Boost Efficiencies

CUs should consider collaboration, work flow improvements to reduce costs.

July 1, 2012
As credit unions experience tepid loan demand and increased pressure on earnings, they’re turning to their information technology (IT) departments to achieve greater efficiencies, according to CUNA’s 2012-2013 Credit Union Environmental Scan Report.

The new report finds that credit unions are reducing costs and increasing efficiencies through:

Collaboration. Look for ways to pool scarce technology resources with other credit unions while focusing on solving your credit union’s unique member needs.

Look for credit unions that use the same core processing system and exploit your IT network, such as the CUNA Technology Council or your core processor’s user group, to find opportunities for collaboration.

Workflow/process optimization. Identify processes that are tedious, have multiple steps, and take a long time to complete. Create a team of internal “experts” who use these processes daily and document each one, step by step.

Find ways to automate highly repetitive manual steps. The goal is to reduce errors, decrease labor costs, and increase employee and member satisfaction.

Electronic statements and notices. Your credit union can reap significant savings when members switch to electronic statements.

Consider providing electronic notices for certificate maturities, overdrafts, and other member

Remote workforce. Today’s technology will let employees, especially call center or back-office staff, work remotely. Many of these employees aren’t able to work full-time, but would work part-time if appropriate.

Allowing some employees to work remotely can reduce benefits and compensation costs, and help your credit union staff for peak hours. It also can increase employee satisfaction and give your credit union specific skills it otherwise might be lacking.

Visit escan.cuna.org/planning for information.