Tech Time: The importance of a digital strategy

Features, vendor updates and overall value must shape your credit union’s online and mobile plans.

A new decade has begun. Although there has been a clear trend toward the use of digital tools in recent years, current events are highlighting the importance of a strong digital strategy. However, some credit unions may be struggling with how to improve their digital footprint and how much to invest in this time of turmoil.

Why Digital?

This may be stating the obvious, a robust digital strategy has become absolutely crucial for financial institutions in 2020. First and foremost, members like being able to access their accounts from anywhere and do basic financial tasks—pay bills, deposit checks, transfer funds, set alerts, etc. And today, with many members (and branch staff) hunkering down at home to avoid COVID-19 exposure, this growing member preference has become a universal need.

Digital banking is comprised of “mobile banking” and “online banking,” although the terms “digital”, “mobile” and “online” are often intermixed. Traditional “online banking” has been thought of as full access to the credit union’s entire website and self-service tools using a PC, tablet or a laptop.  “Mobile banking” is typically used to describe functionality that can be easily accessed through a smartphone app or mobile website. These digital offerings are quickly merging, but in general, mobile banking is the newer of the technologies, and due to such limitations as screen size, it is generally limited to a few services—viewing account activity, mobile deposit, transferring funds, etc.


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