Why fast integration is the new innovation

Partners FCU commits to implementing best-in-class technology twice as fast.

The financial services industry is shifting so quickly that it’s hard for credit unions to keep pace. Having built their reputations for superior member service in face-to-face encounters at the branch, credit unions now must meet evolving expectations for state-of-the-art mobile and online access as well. Members want all that delivered seamlessly—along with whatever the next big thing right around the bend may be.

Few credit unions have the IT talent on staff to develop their own solutions from scratch and, even if they did, it’s likely that one or more big technology providers or fintech startups have beat them to the punch. Rather than striving for in-house innovation, which is a high-priced gamble, credit unions may be better off finding really good technology partners and working with them on rapid integration.

Tech firms have invested billions to stockpile ready solutions and platforms for credit unions to implement. We talk about innovation as a gateway to keep our brands and offerings relevant to members. But moving quickly to implement new-to-the-market technology is so close to innovation that the difference may be indistinguishable to members.

That’s not to say reinventing our organizations as masters of rapid implementation and integration is easy or straightforward. In undertaking this challenge at Partners Federal Credit Union, we reengineered our organizational structure to embrace agile methodology and adopted a new approach to business partnerships.


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