Financial Coaching Leads to Financial Responsibility

CUs can boost members' financial health offering personalized financial management interventions.

September 1, 2014

Credit unions can positively affect the financial health of their members— particularly those with low to middle incomes—by offering personalized financial management interventions, according to a recent Filene Research Institute report.

The report illustrates the importance of this type of financial coaching by describing the results of a pilot program administered in a Portland-based credit union. The program compared individuals who received financial intervention with those who didn’t. Members who received help from a financial coach earned 21% more in savings.

“The pilot demonstrated that customized, one-on-one coaching sessions can help individuals remain accountable to their financial goals,” the report Filene says. “For credit unions, the key is to remain invested in these individuals as they leave your branches.”

An efficient financial advice product might feature guidance for members in setting specific goals, following through on intentions, setting up reminders, and monitoring progress.

The bottom line?

“The more involved credit unions are in the financial lives of their members, the more success they will have in helping their members sustain financial responsibility,” according to the report.

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