Vacuum cleaners used to just suck. Literally... they sucked up dirt off your floor. They had a filter and a bag to collect the dirt, a motor that determined just how well they sucked, and usually some attachments to suck in hard to reach places. Then came Dyson, who told us we shouldn't be content with just sucking, but rather, we need cyclonic separation. No filters, no bags, just really powerful suckage that also cleans the air around you. At first, other vacuum manufacturers laughed and sold their filters and their bags aftermarket, because that's the way it was always done and they thought that's what consumers were comfortable with. Now look up vacuums on Amazon and you will be hard-pressed to find a bagged vacuum! When it comes to credit union technology, it's easy to get comfortable with what you have and what works - why suck harder if you can suck less? Don't be lulled into complacency or a Dyson might come around and start picking off your membership.
Successful credit unions and their C-level decision makers need to be constantly on the lookout for what else is out there and be aware of industry trends. Advancements in credit union technology are on-going, impacting how business is conducted and changing the landscape. Sometimes these changes come in the form of new regulations, tech developments or marketing trends. These all impact current business, future growth and at times, provide the catalyst needed to initiate change. The smart Credit Union CEO has their finger on this pulse and is prepared - and willing - to make changes.
Typically as the year closes, credit union strategic planning for the upcoming year takes place, and a roadmap of the CU's future for the next year is constructed. This is the perfect time to consider working in technological upgrades or preparing your core system for upcoming regulatory changes. Plan to kick your technology tires a bit during your strategic planning session. Do some research to see what industry leaders are working on or what new and cutting-edge tools and technologies are out there. Don't laugh at the Dysons of the financial world... while you may not be ready to embrace the newest new thing, if a bank or credit union is offering a new product or service that may seem way too advanced, they are doing it because they most likely saw a need that perhaps you don't know exists yet. Who knew we didn't want bags in our vacuums? (Dyson did...) Investigate. Look for new opportunities and then reach out to your tech provider, and others, for additional information and don't be afraid to ask for a demonstration.
These changes might be regulatory in nature, advances in cyber security, marketing and mobile technologies, disaster recovery and other industry trends. This is a great time to perform a core system review and consider making changes. Complacency can be comfortable but remember not to take your clean floors for granted and don't be afraid to suck more.