At Kinecta Credit Union in Manhattan Beach, Calif., technology planning is directly aligned with business strategy.
"Technology planning is much more straightforward when it’s directly connected to achieving the desired business outcomes,” says Sharon Moseley, senior vice president/chief information officer at the $4.4 billion asset credit union.
“Straightforward” is not an easy path to forge today, Moseley says. “Members want to do it all. They don’t stop using one channel and start using another. They want to use the ATM, the call center, online banking, and mobile, and branches.
“Each channel should know what happened last so we can predict what the member might want next,” she continues. “You have all these channels to support so you also need an overarching architecture that connects the channels.”
It’s the job of Kinecta’s information technology (IT) department to make the lives of employees and members easier by integrating systems and delivery channels to provide a 360-degree view of the member relationship.
Toward that aim, Moseley and her team have developed a framework that integrates a front-end platform called TKX 360 with a business intelligence platform through middleware using application programing interfaces (APIs). An API is a software intermediary that allows two programs to talk to each other.
The business intelligence platform includes all member information: channels the member prefers, channels the member used last, product and service use, transactions, balances, purchases, and credit report.
Having access to this information in one place makes it easy for employees using the front-end system to make informed decisions when serving members. Staff doesn’t have to log in to several different systems.
‘It’s all about making it fast and easy to do business with you.’
Members also connect with the credit union through one consistent user interface that uses the same APIs. This allows the member to interact with business lines such as consumer lending and mortgage lending, which can be prepopulated with the member’s information.
Members get one experience and don’t have to re-enter their information when switching to a different product or when they have a different inquiry.
“We're trying to make sure members can use all channels, and every channel knows what happened last, so we can predict what to do next,” Moseley says.
For example, if a member calls the contact center to report a lost credit card and the next day walks into a branch to conduct a transaction, the member service representative should be able to tell the member her new card is in the mail and she should have it within the next two days.
The infrastructure will employ artificial intelligence by the end of this year, which forms the basis for predictive analytics to initiate the “next best conversation with members,” Moseley says.
“Based on the member’s credit history, I may know he has a card with Bank of America with a rate of 12%,” she explains. “We might offer a card with rewards and a lower interest rate.”
In turn, the predictive analytics platform offers suggestions to the business intelligence system, which forwards offers to the front-end that connects with employees and members. That way, employees know what has last been offered to the member.
Kinecta is implementing a digital marketing engine that will allow it to communicate and track contacts with members through their preferred channels.
Moseley says Kinecta stays current on the types of features and services members want and expect, such as person-to-person payments and interactive personal financial management.
Through its investment (along with 11 other credit unions) in Constellation, an open and digital platform for credit unions, Kinecta will convert its online and mobile banking platforms to one digital platform where it can offer several digital services under one Kinecta brand and through one secure login and connection to the core banking system.
Every day presents an opportunity to grow, maintain relevance, and improve services and efficiencies, Moseley says.
“We’ve been around for 80 years, and besides competing with the big banks we’re also now competing with fintechs,” she says. “Today it’s all about making it fast and easy to do business with you.”