Technology

Envision the Possibilities For Member Biz

Time is money for the small-business owner.

February 01, 2012
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My husband has a small property-care business—and he has a tablet and a smartphone.

Several friends who operate businesses from their homes have similar devices.

For years, these credit union members have regularly made deposits but have never been asked in-depth about whether they need additional business services.

Credit unions wanting to build deeper member relationships need look no further than this group of small office/home office business owners standing in line every week with deposits.

And yes, it’s true: These members could take the initiative to meet with member service representatives to learn what their credit unions offer. But to the more than 27 million small businesses, including home businesses, time is money.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s that these business owners often don’t have a lot of extra time because they wear so many hats. They’re also the marketing departments, general accountants, technology specialists, and sales staff.

Remote deposit capture (RDC) via smartphones and tablets or at the desktop would go a long way to making their business lives more efficient. 

Jeff Mack believes credit unions can step in and help businesses envision the possibilities mobile technologies offer. Mack is CEO of Cachet Financial Solutions.

In our cover story on p. 20 (“Mobile solutions for small businesses”), he tells credit unions that by educating businesses about the value of easy-to-use RDC solutions they’ll be positioned to retain valued lending relationships and win over new members.

And Calvin Grimes, Fiserv’s product manager of mobile services, predicts microbusinesses will be among the groups showing a “staggering” demand for mobile RDC in the months and years ahead.

Adoption of corporate mobile banking solutions among the top U.S. banks has been slow, according to Celent. But it likely will pick up steam as more mobile solutions emerge.

As Celent’s research also points out, mobile is no longer a “nice to have” channel. It’s now a fundamental mainstream channel. And more small-business owners soon will expect to have the same banking experiences at the teller station, through the drive-up, or with their mobile device.

Is your credit union ready to deliver?

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Great article! Unfortunately, most employees don’t feel valued or appreciated by their supervisors or employers. In fact, research has shown that the predominant reason team members quit their jobs is because they don’t feel valued. This is in spite of the fact that employee recognition programs have proliferated in the workplace – over 90% of all organizations in the U.S. has some form of employee recognition activities in place. But most employee recognition programs are viewed with skepticism and cynicism – because they aren’t viewed as being genuine in their communication of appreciation. Getting the “employee of the month” award, receiving a certificate of recognition, or a “Way to go, team!” email just don’t get the job done. How do you communicate authentic appreciation? We have found people have different ways that they want to be shown appreciation, and if you don’t communicate in the language of appreciation important to them, you essentially “miss the mark”. Additionally, employees need to receive recognition more than once a year at their performance review. Otherwise, they view the praise as “going through the motions”. A third component of authentic appreciation is that the communication has to be about them personally – not the department, not their group, but something they did. Finally, they have to believe that you mean what you say. How you treat them has to match the words you use. If you are not sure how your team members want to be shown appreciation, the Motivating By Appreciation Inventory (www.appreciationatwork.com/assess) will identify the language of appreciation and specific actions preferred by each employee. You then can create a group profile for your team, so everyone knows how to encourage one another. Remember, employees want to know that they are valued for what they contribute to the success of the organization. And communicating authentic appreciation in the ways they desire it can make the difference between keeping your quality team members or having a negative work environment that everyone wants to leave. Paul White, Ph.D., is the co-author of The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace with Dr. Gary Chapman.

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