3. The consumerization of IT
Like members, employees generally are familiar with technology and are accustomed to having go-to apps, websites, and services that make their lives easier. They sometimes draw on these tools at work to help members and to improve their efficiency.
This has fueled the “consumerization” of IT, Reh says, wherein credit unions and other businesses embrace technologies initially developed for consumers.
“Smart credit union leaders will keep their ears open and let consumer technology preferences help drive their product and service strategies,” he says.
Social media and mobile devices are prime examples of consumerization. The former has changed how organizations talk, interact, sell, and build brands. Social media’s extensive reach can create new opportunities to serve current and prospective members quickly and effectively.
Mobile devices now affect every aspect of corporate and personal life. With millions of mobile devices sold each year, smartphones and tablets are inescapable.
Plus, mobile payments are increasing exponentially, fueled largely by members of Gen Y. Credit unions should consider two aspects of consumerization, Barker says: The impact of employees’ use of their own technology and the credit union’s expectations regarding what staff should or shouldn’t be able to do with their devices at work.
“Employees want our credit union systems to be as easy to use as their iPads or other devices they use at home,” he says. “It’s the same for members. They now expect to use a tablet or go online for formerly branchonly services.”
Mountain America recently gave members the ability to enroll in online mobile banking via mobile devices. Previously, members had to create accounts online before being able to use the credit union’s mobile apps.
“Some people have dropped their PCs altogether and want to run their lives from a tablet,” Barker says. “They don’t even want to go to our website—they want to use our apps for everything. We also want the ability for potential members to simply download our apps and open an account right there.”
Another innovation in the works at Mountain America is an iPad teller platform employees can use in branches when lines get long.
“Employees will be able to pull people out of line and use iPads to for certain transactions,” he explains. “It’s another example of consumerization pushing into the enterprise.”