Which Credit Union Concerns Deserve Your Attention in 2022?

 

Like many industries right now, it seems like the top credit union concerns are changing rapidly. But many of them boil down to accessibility, security, and improving member experience.

As we move through 2022 trending topics, it’s good to compare these new trends with the mission and vision of your organization, as well as the member demographics that your specific credit union(s) will be serving.

We are all being affected by change fatigue lately, so choosing the best credit union concerns to address in the last months of 2022 means taking a good look at the industry as a whole but remembering that you still have a job to do, and your credit union has a niche to fill in your communities.

By focusing on these areas and staying informed with insights from prominent CU news sources and the IMSI blog, you can quickly figure out which credit union concerns and 2022 trending topics deserve your attention.

Cashless & Contactless Are Kings

By 2030, Gen Z’s economic power is expected to increase fivefold, and when combined with millennials, they’ll make up 72% of the workforce just before that.

Catering to your younger members (and growing that base) is essential to the success of any business that hopes to continue serving clients in the next several decades.

Top-tier payment experience is a must-have for credit unions and businesses as a whole. Cashless and contactless payments are no longer considered a fresh, new luxury – they are a requirement for your member’s experience. In fact, more than half of global millennials are likely to avoid patronizing and partnering with businesses (and credit unions) that don’t offer cashless and contactless payments

The popularity of ACH payments and digital wallets will mark a heavy difference in the way the world’s economy operates in the coming years. Because of this, creating contactless payment options should be at the top of your list of credit union concerns for 2022.

Protect Data Privacy through Cybersecurity

Growing concerns for cybersecurity threats and best practices continue to be among the top 2022 trending topics, regardless of which industry you work in.

Recently, CUNA reported a strong show of support from credit unions on the subject of data privacy and cybersecurity.

Your credit union members are not satisfied with empty comments and promises that their data is safe if you can’t share what plans and protocols you have put in place recently to protect their data and financial privacy.

The credit union concerns that stem from extra data protection and cybersecurity are online and remote user experience. Your members want secure financial transactions and bank accounts through your credit union, but they also don’t want to struggle to access them.

As we navigate that fine line, it’s important to remember that user error is the most common cause of most global security breaches.

Credit vs. Debit Card Use

Credit unions are financial institutions that are built on the premise that banking should be done through a business that doesn’t just care about the financial health of its members, but also strives to promote financial education and community outreach.

Because of these roots, more and more banking experts are being called upon to help their members figure out whether a debit card or credit card is right for them. Because fraud and identity theft are on the rise, it’s wise to let members know that with a credit card, the card issuer will have to fight to get the money back, and with a debit card, the member is the one who will have to fight.

Your credit union is uniquely positioned to be able to solicit feedback from your members on what their payment preferences are, and what types of rewards or features they want their credit and debit cards to have.

For example, many Gen Z and millennial members across the US are more likely to use debit cards, having grown up in times of prolonged financial and economic crisis. These generations are also more concerned about debt mitigation – this should be an important focus area for addressing credit union concerns this year.

There has also been an uptick in credit card product creation – this includes how the cards work, what rewards or benefits certain cards can offer, and more. Catering to your members of all ages through credit card features is another 2022 trending topic that could gain you some members and increase current member satisfaction as well.

IMSI: Comprehensive Solutions for Credit Union Concerns

IMSI was built by credit union industry experts. We offer a host of Keystone solutions as well as credit union and customizable and professional services to ensure your credit union has the greatest chances of digital success.

You know your members best, and IMSI is here to help you continue to serve them with optimized processes and online solutions.

Are you interested in exploring IMSI’s offerings? Reach out to us today and request a consultation.


How Credit Union Membership Is Changing

 

Credit unions have made massive pivots throughout the pandemic. And now, more than two years later, it’s time to take stock. Credit union membership is evolving, just as credit union services and online offerings are also expanding into new territories.

In 2021, credit unions added 4.7 million new members, which is a 23.6% increase when compared to the corresponding period in 2020, according to a CUNA Mutual Group study reported by American Banker.

But the growth is not universal across all credit unions. Those that have seen growth in their membership numbers year over year, even during the pandemic, have maintained that growth through innovation. Adapting to virtual solutions and online banking services has been a huge differentiator. Credit union membership is changing, and here’s how it will affect your branches and operations.

Mortgage Lending and Increased Hiring Offer Promising Results

The pandemic created supply chain issues all over the world. And we are seeing those issues play out in several industries, at different paces. For example, there was recently a shortage of computer chips reserved for use in vehicles, which then affected credit unions and other financial institutions.

Auto loans were on the decline as the high prices, small incentives, and sparse showrooms were affecting the desire and ability of consumers to car shop and apply for auto loans. The chip shortages are decreasing in severity, but they are expected to last into 2023 and beyond.

But there are other credit union-related areas that are experiencing rebound and growth. The housing market is a hot topic, and that means mortgage lending is helping drive credit union membership increases.

The other factor positively impacting credit union membership is the increase in hiring. Businesses are continuing to rebound after the last few years of hardship.

When the excitement around the housing market slows down, auto loans are expected o bounce back. That coupled with the expected 3.6 million new jobs being created in 2022 will mean your credit union’s value proposition will continue to increase in the coming months.

Data-Driven & Cybersecurity-Focused Approaches Resonate with New Audiences

Another consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic is the increase in cybersecurity breaches. And increasing your cybersecurity approaches to create robust programs has actually been shown to resonate heavily with potential members of all ages. According to Flex, 30% or more of people studied in an Adobe Analytics report, regardless of generation, ranked security as their number one banking concern.

There are also big benefits in revamping how you store and use member data. Your credit union has a huge collection of member insights at your fingertips, but many technologies that store this data need to be updated or replaced in order to make the most of the information stored there.

And this use of targeted member data analytics also feeds into your credit union’s value proposition. Credit union membership thrives on personalization. There’s great power in tailoring your apps, customer service, and member access and transactions to fit everyone’s preferences or lifestyle.

Personalization is not so much a luxury for your credit union anymore – it’s a necessity that facilitates growth.

Increased Connectedness & Crypto Solutions are on the Horizon

The surge in the popularity of cryptocurrency also highlights opportunities for credit union membership growth.

Smaller institutions and credit unions will now have avenues built by NCUA regulations and guidance to help kickstart CU crypto services. Credit unions have an opportunity right now to build crypto programs before they become widespread amongst the small financial institutions.

Between COVID and a growing number of Gen Z members dominating the customer experience space, connectedness is also a priority. This means you need more than just online offerings; you need digital solutions that are available in your physical spaces.

Branch strategies had to be re-evaluated during COVID, and now it will be done again. This time, the goal will be to connect each member’s experience to create seamless solutions. By prioritizing connectedness, credit unions can also increase efficiency in workflows, both on the member side and the employee side.

Physical and digital touchpoints will continue to become more unified.

Credit Union Membership Growth is Rooted in Leveraging the Right Technology

Technology is the medium through which you can market to, communicate with, and ultimately, serve your current and future credit union members. And that’s what IMS Integration was built on.

We have everything from premier solutions for Keystone users (Infuzion, Web Loan Applications, Online Accounting Opening, and more) to professional services like custom web development and electronic forms.

Frequent regulation and compliance changes and the rapid-fire technology trends affecting how everyone does business, IMSI wants to help lighten your credit union’s load. Whether you need forms, notices, or letters, we have the expertise to be able to deliver. Or take advantage of our well-honed industry experience to create a member-forward website experience that both satisfies current members and also encourages member growth.

Check out our website for more information on these and other services, or contact us today if you have questions.