Technology

Tech Gap Between Members and CUs Is Widening

Younger members define convenience with smartphone apps, not branch offices and ATMs.

October 16, 2012
/ PRINT / ShareShare / Text Size +

“The gap between your members’ technology behavior and your credit union’s technology behavior is getting wider and becoming more apparent,” says Brett King, founder and chairman of Movenbank, and author of the book “Bank 2.0.”

King says the fact that the average age of credit union members isn’t coming down is indicative of this widening technology gap.

King spoke Monday morning to attendees of the CUNA Technology Council and the CUNA Operations, Sales & Service Council annual conferences, held concurrently this week in Las Vegas.

Many credit unions have an outdated mindset and believe members define convenience in terms of branch offices and ATMs, says King. Younger members, however, define convenience with smartphone apps. Branch transactions have declined from an average of 11,400 per month per branch in 2000 to 6,800 in 2011. And 18% of branches are unprofitable today, he says.

“Your credit union’s value proposition is defined by a younger generation in terms of mobile banking,” says King. “The average age of credit union members is in the 40s because young consumers don’t think credit unions have state-of-the-art mobile banking applications.

“You shouldn’t define your value proposition in terms of service or advice,” King continues. “Service today is defined primarily by the quality of your mobile banking application. It’s no longer defined by a smile and remembering a member’s name.

“More than 90% of consumers say they can’t remember getting good advice from their financial institutions,” King adds. “Good advice is largely a myth. The thinking that a financial institution is the sole provider of ‘good advice’ is outdated and came from the age of ‘information scarcity.’  Now, your members have access to tremendous amounts of information and often know more about financial products than your front-line staff.”

Other tips from King:

Post a comment to this story

heroes

What's Popular

Popular Stories

Recent Discussion

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.

Your Say: Who should be Credit Union Magazine's 2014 CU Hero of the Year?

View Results Poll Archive