In today’s challenging environment, the profitability and success of a credit union is due, in large part, to the expertise and skill of its employees
by. Charles Shanley, JMFA Executive Search Group
In today’s challenging environment, the profitability and success of a credit union is due, in large part, to the expertise and skill of its employees. It is imperative that they not only complete their responsibilities as accurately as possible, they also must be aware of the changing regulatory environment and be knowledgeable about what is happening in the industry in order to instill a sense of reliability and trust with members.
However, according to some estimates, the ability to maintain a high level of quality employees is becoming more challenging as much of the aging baby boomer workforce is set to retire, coupled with a shortage of qualified workers available to replace them. While some human resource projections question that prediction – saying that current economic conditions will keep older workers in the workforce longer – the fact remains that the long-term success of an institution can be greatly determined by the quality of the employees it hires and develops through training and education.
Getting the most return from your investment
Once you have the right people in place, it is important to invest in the development of their skills and give them what they need to contribute to the organization. In return, you can expect the following benefits:
- Increased productivity. To ensure high performance from employees, make sure they are properly trained. Quality training is not simply showing employees how to do a job, but helping them to acquire the necessary knowledge required to perform their duties accurately, understand how they are contributing to the overall operation and make responsible decisions.
Many times supervisors take the small details of a position for granted. They assume that an employee knows how to perform a specific task, so they skim over the explanations of “how” and “why” that task is essential. This sets the staff member up for errors that will later need to be corrected and could cause additional work for other employees. Or, even worse, if a problem is not discovered right away, it can lead to member service issues, which can become a much bigger problem for the organization.
- Reduced employee turnover. It’s a proven fact that employees want to contribute to an organization and be rewarded with recognition, pay increases and additional opportunities – including expanding their knowledge and expertise with training. When employees are not properly trained or challenged by their work, they lose motivation, become disgruntled and begin looking for other opportunities. This can lead to significant turnover costs.
Plus, while often overlooked, the extra costs associated with hiring and retraining a replacement can add up and affect the bottom line. A new hire may take several weeks to get up to speed, resulting in extra expenses and a less efficient use of time.
- Increased efficiency resulting in financial gains. Training costs are really a return on investment. When employees feel their employers are investing in their careers, they are less likely to look for another job or leave when other employment opportunities arise.
- Decreased need for supervision. Employees that are adequately trained and cross-trained need less supervision. Plus, an employee who is able to perform a number of functions can be called upon to fill in during vacations or when you do have open positions. Training also assists in the development of your employees, ensuring you have qualified internal talent ready to be promoted as the organizations grows.
- Increased innovation. Once employees thoroughly understand their job responsibilities and have been cross-trained on other positions, they begin to really understand the organization. Many times this knowledge leads to process improvement initiatives or new innovative product offerings that they would not have discovered without a clear understanding of their how their position functions within the entire organization.
The outcome of investing in your staff with a quality training and development program: more productivity, better service, new product ideas and ultimately better financial results which can mean a real competitive advantage for your credit union.
JMFA is a leading provider of profitability and performance-improvement consulting. For more than 30 years, JMFA has been recognized as one of the most trusted names in the industry, helping financial institutions enhance their bottom line with programs like JMFA Overdraft Privilege®. JMFA is also recognized for earnings enhancement and expense control programs, training, executive placement, account acquisition programs as well as product, service, pricing and technology-improvement consulting. Simply stated, JMFA’s programs and services are designed to increase income or reduce expenses. JMFA is proud to be a preferred provider among many industry groups. To learn more about JMFA, please visit www.JMFA.com or call (800) 809-2307.