How sustainability initiatives help sustain your bottom line
Everybody is talking about “being green” these days, and more and more credit unions are striving to have a positive impact on the environment and the community. But in today’s challenging economic climate, sustainability initiatives can have a much broader implication than just the impact to the environment. Sustaining any business these days requires constant attention to improving operational efficiency and service. Indeed, credit unions that are truly committed to building a sustainable future must also commit to a ground level belief in business practices that will not only help save the environment but also save money as well.
Go Green, Save Green
One way credit unions can “go green and save green” is by reducing or eliminating paper-based member correspondence. Going paperless literally saves trees while saving money. A traditional member statement costs most credit unions about $0.75…or more…to print and mail. That is compared to only around 15 cents for an electronic statement. Do the math – a savings of at least $.60 for each statement, for each member, for each month. That savings compounds exponentially when you begin to include other member communications like notices, letters, invoices, and so forth.
Save Trees, Save Money
Making a positive impact to the environment takes more than just a day, or just a week; it takes a continual commitment to be green. One way credit unions fulfill the promise of being green is by eliminating the ongoing inefficiencies, waste and environmental impact associated with paper-based correspondence. According to PayItGreen.org, if only 20% of American households switched from paper to electronic bills, statements and payments each year, the collective impact would:
- Save 146.9 million pounds of paper and 542.7 million pounds of wood
- Avoid filling 7 million household garbage bags and 5 thousand garbage trucks with waste
- Avoid using 14.9 million gallons of gasoline to mail bills, statements and payments
By undertaking a thoughtful effort to transition members away from paper-based correspondence credit unions can make a meaningful and tangible contribution to environmental sustainability.
The benefits of adopting paperless member correspondence can come in many different shades of green. According to a report by D S Simon Productions, organizations that demonstrate social responsibility generate 35-50% more positive media coverage on television, radio, web and social media. As a result, there is a measurable improvement in market perception enjoyed by credit unions seen as being particularly environmentally-conscious. As more and more members become increasingly focused on issues of environmental impact, credit unions that champion the green cause will ultimately engage with members and the community in a more meaningful way.
It’s Easy Being Green
Now is the time to go green and position your credit union as an environmental leader. According to a 2011 study by MIT, 70% of business leaders today consider green practices to be a vital part of remaining competitive in the market. Where to start? The good news is that solutions are available, like our own Cloud-based TransXAction service, which can ease the transition to the paperless world. Now credit unions can literally save trees while saving money, and benefit from strategies that not only encourage environmental sustainability but also help to sustain the business as well.
Brad Banyas is CEO of OMI, a leading Managed Communication Service Provider that assists organizations in transitioning print communications to the paperless world. OMI products, Statement2web® and TransXAction, ™ provide a single point for creating, managing, and measuring customer communications of all kinds. OMI enables business-changing strategies that utilize daily, weekly and monthly customer communications as focal points to reduce cost, increase revenue, improve brand loyalty and boost customer satisfaction. Visit www.omi.co.