Solving Your Members’ Four Problems

family who are credit union members saving coins in a piggy bank

In today’s pandemic world, credit unions think about the member in terms of PPP or PPE or DQ. While all of these are important, let’s take a moment to take a few steps back and give mindful thought as to why a member engages with a credit union in the first place.

Members have four problems that they want to partner with the credit union to get solved.

1. Transportation problem. The member needs transportation to accomplish basic needs. This should not be confused with an auto loan. The credit union should consider itself as the conduit to transportation.

2. Shelter problem. The member needs a place to call home as a basic need. This should not be confused with a mortgage. The credit union is the conduit to shelter.

3. Travel and play problem. The member desires either travel and/or play. They need a financial partner that will help them achieve these goals within their current financial condition.

4. Rainy day and retirement problem. The member needs a financial partner that will help them set up short-term and long-term deposits.

A member may find themselves with a combination of these needs. They may have shelter but are looking to downsize. They may want to travel but don’t know how to save. A member’s financial needs describe the member’s current financial journey. That journey is leading them to a financial destination that is the member’s true financial north. The member’s true financial north traditionally focuses on a variation of financial security. It may be retirement, it may be a first-time home purchase, or it may be a sixth car purchase. Members want to have the funds, when they need them, to make their financial dreams come true, to seek their financial true north. And wherever the financial destination is, there is data behind it.

Data comes from various sources, including but not limited to the core, MCIF, CRM loan origination system, payment system, and more. All this data reveals information about the member’s current financial condition and their next financial need. It is up to the credit union to fulfill it.

Here are a few quick questions to identify how your credit union is solving members’ problems.

  • What do we know about our members? That would be what can you pull right now to identify members problems.
  • How do you position products? Evaluate the messaging, is there Auto loan messaging or Auto?
  • Evaluate the member problem resolution process. How do you think about the member engagement journey? Does it focus on solving the problem, or is it focused inwardly toward the credit union goals?

About Anne Legg

THRIVE CEO and credit union expert Anne Legg

Anne Legg is a recognized, award-winning industry expert, author, educator, member-centric data strategist who holds an MBA thesis on the credit union business model. She is the author of Big Data/Big Climb: A Credit Union Playbook for Leveraging Data and Talent to Achieve Revolutionary Member Relationships.

Anne is the founder and CEO of THRIVE Strategic Services. She has guided over 600 credit union leaders on a mission to simplify their data transformation and identify new revenue sources, lessen member friction, and increase talent productivity to truly change member lives.