Payments, payments everywhere and new questions at every turn. Many credit unions fear fintech disruption, but aren’t sure how to set their payments strategy to best position them in the changing marketplace.
Fortunately, there are three concrete things your credit union can do to help make sense of it all, as described in the cover story of our soon-to-publish January Credit Union Management magazine. Resolve to make this your 2017 payments mantra: “read, heed and manage the speed.”
- Spend time every day keeping up to date on payments trends and announcements. Great sources of information about what’s up-and-coming in payments include PYMNTS.com, BI Intelligence, and Fintech Weekend. White papers from Mercator, Gartner and Forrester also can be worthy reading. Finally, talk with vendors and your peers. Keeping up with payments innovations is possible even for CUs with limited resources, but it takes work.
- Heed weak signals. CUES’ new Payments University, developed with CUES Supplier member CO-OP Financial Solutions, will talk about many tools for cutting through the payments jungle. A key tool will be how to heed “weak signals”—potential threats that are difficult to pick up on and sort out. The first step in heeding weak signals is tracking them in adjacent industries, in other parts of the world and in the experience of your member-facing employees. The second is discerning which signals are genuine—and applicable to your CU—in time to take action. All the reading you do will help you with this.
- Manage the speed. Payments transactions are happening faster and faster all the time. Cases in point include same-day ACH, loan decisioning and mobile payments of all kinds. Members’ desire for fast, easy transactions needs to be balanced with leaving enough time for appropriate underwriting and security to be implemented.
How will you know if your 2017 “read, heed and manage the speed” mantra is paying off? You’ll be abreast of what’s happening in the industry. You’ll have tools that use logic to sort the “wheat” payments possibilities from the chaff. And you’ll be successfully protecting your credit union’s reputation—and your members’ personal data—with effective security and underwriting, while also meeting members’ convenience needs.