Credit unions must rely on a "tool box" of analytics tools rather than a single instrument, PerformanceG2's Ben Zimmerman told the audience at the 2016 CUNA Data Analytics Roundtable. (CUNA Photo)

Experts: CU data analytics success will depend on collaboration

April 5, 2016

SALT LAKE CITY (4/5/16)--If credit unions are to position themselves as disruptors in the data analytics space, it will take a collaborative effort, two experts advised at Monday’s 2016 Credit Union National Association Data Analytics Roundtable in Salt Lake City.

“We’ve concluded that there’s going to have to be an industry-wide solution for credit unions,” said Steve Hodgson, principal of RedPort, a data analytics firm that works with credit unions. “There’s just not the scale and the data,” he said during the panel “Building the Analytics Base: Cultures, Concepts and Tools.”


Steve Hodgson

Hodgson said only the very biggest credit unions have the budget and the data to achieve their objectives with data analytics. Most credit union must make at least a $1 million investment in analytics with multiple levels of personnel.

“So many different skill sets are needed,” Hodgson added.

“Our great credit union installations are collaborative efforts. If the credit union relies on us for everything, it doesn’t work. If we just give the credit unions the software, it doesn’t work. If the credit union has a great analyst on their side, we get great results, but it’s a shared effort.”

Hodgson called for a “shared analytics competency” between analytics providers and credit unions.

He said to his knowledge there is “nothing in the works,” but it’s possible that a regional credit union service organization could enter the space at some point.

“I’m always bullish on credit unions,” said Hodgson, who previously worked for CUNA Mutual Group. “Once they start investing the effort and the time, they will find the money to make it happen.”

John Best, president/CEO of Best Innovation Group, facilitated the roundtable that included Ben Zimmerman of PerformanceG2.

Best said, “there are no other options” for credit unions, other than collaboration in the data analytics space.

“There’s opportunity like never before,” he said. “But credit unions have to get back to collaboration.”