The Business Breakdown

Mobile efficiency apps, consumer behavior, and the ramifications of high rent are all in the news this week.


The economy is driven by behavior. What people buy, how they pay for things and what investments they make all directly affect the short- and long-term health of the world’s markets. With that in mind, let’s take a look at behaviors that can improve the economy (on the small and large levels) and what credit unions can do to contribute in a positive way.

  • My Phone Is Efficient: Mobile app developers are churning out tools to help people maximize productivity.  HoursTracker helps you keep track of billable hours, and Invoice2go makes generating a bill and receiving payment through PayPal a snap. The Breakdown: Credit unions must remain efficient in order to pass along the residual benefits of operational efficiency to members. Look at these apps two ways: 1) Would any of these apps help your employees work smarter or make your cooperative run more efficiently? 2) How efficient is your mobile offering to members? Do you have a credit union app that lets your members check balances and transfer funds? Think about both angles and make positive progress.
  • The Good News?: Although the economy is hardly stable, there is good news in there somewhere. Because of the recession, folks are forced to pay down debt and stock up on savings to make their dreams come true. The Breakdown: Credit unions can capitalize on members' appetites for financial health. Offer a seminar on how to have a savings plan and stick to it. At the seminar, promote a second event about debt-management tactics. The classes get members in the credit union, serve as networking opportunities, and offer ways to help members and, in turn, the credit union.
  • Rent Keeps Going Up: People are less adamant about home ownership, and the lack of interest is kicking rents up a notch or two. That could become a problem given how much the average American spends on housing. The Breakdown: People are moving away from homeownership, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t benefits to purchasing a home. Maybe running a mortgage promotion would help reinvigorate both your loan portfolio and the member base’s interest in that kind of investment. If nothing else, the chance to save money should pique their interest.

May 31, 2011



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