In the last 18 months, credit unions have embodied the adage, “Necessity is the mother of invention.”
After the pandemic was declared and George Floyd was murdered in early 2020, credit unions responded by reinventing their processes—and, really, themselves.
- Many credit unions figured out new ways for staff to effectively and securely serve members while working in the safety of their own homes.
- Many deployed or leveraged existing remote teller machines—and at least one credit union closed mortgages at the drive-thru.
- Some completed large core conversion projects without ever having a vendor representative onsite.
- Significant numbers also stepped up to boost diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging by enrolling staff members in high-quality learning programs, hiring chief diversity officers to guide their efforts and striving to create climates where employees can bring their authentic selves to work.
Now that the economy is reopening in many places in North America, innovation is just as necessary as before. How will your credit union creatively respond to the key questions now at hand?
- Which innovations adopted in the last year and a half should be continued? Adapted? Dropped?
- What are the new best practices for your organization for having staff work in-person, remotely or in some hybrid fashion?
- What are ways to effectively support staff members who have been dealing with significant uncertainty and change for such a long time?
- How digital-first does your credit union need to go to effectively serve its current and future members? And how fast?
- What does your credit union need to do to start or continue its diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging efforts in response to changes in your workforce, your membership and the hiring marketplace?
Sometimes it helps to not go it alone, but rather to learn from innovation experts and to talk with peers facing similar questions. CUES is with you on this journey with an innovation of its own. Starting July 19, we’ll offer Strategic Innovation Institute online, in partnership with Stanford University. I’m excited to see what creative solutions you will implement. And I hope your efforts will not only foster success at this critical juncture but pave the way for a successful future.