The struggle is real when talking about modernizing and optimizing payments infrastructures, and many credit unions don’t know where to start. While a sea of solutions and recommendations exist for overcoming this challenge, the bottom line remains the same: delivering a secure, cross-channel payments ecosystem backed by data drives better engagement and streamlines back-office operations with scalability for the future.
But how does a credit union achieve the best mix for their institution? The right approach combines a flexible architecture, modern tech stack, and fraud mitigation tools that afford robust, feature-rich capabilities and payment experiences, while still enhancing the user journey and ultimately securing loyalty through improved member services.
Below are four ways to achieve success:
1. Establish a common infrastructure across all channels: Financial institutions have traditionally implemented different solutions across each of their channels – all delivering similar capabilities but tailored to a specific point of capture and often managed by separate internal teams. These disparate systems cause data inconsistencies, lack of transparency, and limited cross-channel member journeys. With a common infrastructure deployable across all full- and self-service solutions, credit unions deliver consistency with streamlined workflows and a uniform UX – treating every document or transaction the same, regardless of how or where it is captured. The credit union in turn benefits from inter-departmental data sharing, empowering new service offerings and better responsiveness with more robust and comprehensive levels of data intelligence – from member service to fraud prevention, marketing, and more. Overhead costs and time decrease as well, significantly decreasing maintenance costs and the need to train employees on the intricacies of varying platforms. And, with only one environment to maintain across the institution, credit unions expedite time-to-market for new offerings and are more readily able to dedicate employees towards member services and engagement programs.
2. Satisfy dynamic member expectations with an omni-channel strategy: In today’s high-tech, high-touch environment, members demand self-service tools to handle their banking needs 24X7X365, getting frustrated with multiple sets of credentials and UX’s for each channel. Whether banking online, from a smartphone, or at the teller, members expect to transact fluidly across all points of presentment. Built on a single, integrated platform, omni-channel banking transforms the user experience by providing continuous engagement across all points of presentment with real-time access to institutional, account holder, and transactional data. With the right strategy, credit unions deliver members the same level of service and personalization they’d receive in the branch, gathering valuable data intelligence for driving member services and marketing efforts, fraud prevention, and engagement.
3. Put your data in the driver’s seat: Unsurprisingly, the need to aggregate, analyze, and interpret massive volumes of transactional data has never been more urgent for a credit union’s sustainability. Leveraging the data associated with member behaviors and user journeys helps cultivate insights for decision making associated with product offerings or service messages, campaigns, and even solution improvements. Personalization helps differentiate your credit union as one that knows and understands its members on a deeper, granular, and meaningful level. Insights like login and enrollment data, feature trends adoptions, and solution drop-offs furthers your ability to meet user demands, grow user engagement and loyalty, and stand out by delivering exactly what members want and need, when they need it. Through streamlined and centralized visualizations, employees gain access to information critical to their roles, translating, again, into better member services.
4. Mitigate risk without compromising functionality or the user journey: Staying steps ahead of fraudsters protects your credit union’s reputation and maintains account holder confidence. Since fraudsters keep unfaltering pace with an evolving, digital-first payments landscape, credit unions must proactively secure every level of their transactional infrastructure. Mitigating risk means looking to real-time, proven techniques and technologies to stop fraud dead in its tracks before it enters workflows, without depreciating functionality and features needed for an optimal member experience. Advanced capabilities like AI and deep learning work in tandem at the point of presentment, pairing risk mitigation solutions with payment and transaction offerings, safeguarding operations and ultimately helping credit unions better understand threats on a more granular level.
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Wendi Klein is Vice President of Marketing & Communications for Alogent.