6 Factors for Measuring Member Service Usage

Credit unions with a high Member Service Usage score have a high number of core account relationships with their members.


Increasing member usage of credit union services is a direct result of how well products are promoted and provided. Member Service Usage is a component of Callahan & Associates’ Return of the Member score. The credit unions that are leaders in this category have a high number of core account relationships with their members.

The factors of Member Service Usage are:

Number of Share Draft Accounts / Members
This factor helps determine if members consider their credit union to be the primary financial institution (PFI). In 2006, 43% of members considered their credit union to be their PFI, a 3% increase from 2000, according to CUNA’s 2006 National Member Survey.

Number of Auto Loan Accounts / Members
Auto lending, which accounts for $89.5 billion of credit union loan balance and remains the industry's bread and butter, is a major component of the loan portfolio and shows whether members are using their credit union's services.

Number of Credit Card Accounts / Members
With an average outstanding balance of $2,118, members are taking advantage of credit union credit cards' low rates and fees. In the first quarter of 2007, credit card penetration stands at 17%, up from 16.5% a year ago.

Total Loan and Savings Accounts / Members
A variety of lending services conveys strong loan quality.

Three Year Member Growth
Strengthening existing member relationships is a key path to greater wallet share, but tracking new member growth is a key component of Member Service Usage. Monitoring member growth in turn measures member response to products and services.

Fee Income / Members
Does the credit union charge less than its peers in fees? Fees are not looked upon kindly by members, but credit unions continue to rely on fees less than banks and thrifts, therefore enhancing member value. Lower fees often result in higher member service usage.

Click the image to view the credit union industry's Member Service Usage leaders for 1Q 2007

Source: CUSP




July 2, 2007


  • I understand your focus on the larger CUs since that''s likely where you gain the most usage or attention, but every once in a while it''d be nice to see performance levels for smaller CU categories. On the one hand I hear you saying that small CUs are important, but on the other, you ignore their success in wholesale fashion.
    Elizabeth Lipke
  • Dane County CU in Wisconsin is not in the asset category listed.
  • Great article, I think it''s definitely important to measure these metrics, but also the metrics with one level of more detail. For the primary financial institution metric, measuring direct deposit and online bill pay adoption, since electronic payments solidify the credit union as the member''s primary financial institution.
    Phil Spradlin
  • Elizabeth (Comment #1), Very good points. Additional asset tables were not included for layout but we''ll get them added soon. Yes, we absolutely believe that credit unions of all sizes are important. In fact, some of our most interesting examples of success and innovation are from small and mid-sized credit unions. Thank you for helping to make this site relevant to all credit unions.
    CreditUnions.com Editor
  • Duh... we don''t know this? But it is a good reminder for those who don''t; of which, I hope there are none.
    Max Bendel
  • If we''re talking about member usage and share of wallet, wouldn''t it be more useful to look at balances per member rather than accounts?
  • Nice to see industry metrics on these factors.