Is your credit union an early adopter or a fast follower? If you are like the majority of credit unions who participated in Callahan’s Annual Technology Survey, you are a fast follower. More than half (52%) of the survey’s credit union respondents indicated they were “Fast Followers.” Another 16% said they were “Early Adopters,” while only 5% considered themselves “Innovators.”
Aside from the two ends of the spectrum, asset size is not a significant factor in how credit unions characterize their technology approach. When it comes to extremes, though, all of the survey’s Innovators held more than $500M in assets, while its Late Adopters primarily consisted of credit unions with less than $50M in assets.
Although some technologies are expensive to implement, many provide efficiency benefits that outweigh the initial investment. If possible, credit unions should adopt earlier those technologies that streamline operations and reduce reliance on costlier channels. Applications such as online account opening, email alerts, and online loan decisioning are cited for their impact on reducing costs and improving member service.
Innovators are most likely to have already implemented technologies such as online deposit entry, remote deposits, live chat, WAP-based mobile banking, and online new member account funding. Many Fast Followers expect to offer these technologies in the coming year. Some technologies move quicker along the adoption curve than others. For example, online loan decisioning is already being offered by many “early maturity” technology adopters.
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