Corelation 2019: All roads lead to a digital member experience

Another Corelation Client Conference in the books – and one to remember. It was, quite possibly, the largest attendance in the show’s history, spotlighting Corelation’s year-long “Decade of Success” theme and demonstrating just how important member experience is to continued progress and prosperity in the credit union industry.

Talk on the show floor, in booths and during network events focused on the same. While there was plenty of discussion about new technology and solution advancement, all conversations eventually led back to one topic: member experience.

Why is everyone so enamored with member experience?

There’s a reason for all the chatter, too. Experts believe customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator across industries.

By 2020, more than 40 percent of all data analytics projects will somehow relate to customer experience, Gartner estimates.

For good reason. Sixty-seven percent of consumers are content to pay more for an exceptional customer experience, according to Salesforce.

That makes every interaction with credit union members a chance to win or lose future business. Better communication and faster innovation to meet member needs is what it takes to be successful now and well into the future.

Experience and service are not the same

At the show, I overheard a conversation that equated member experience with member service. That’s unfortunate, because the two are not the same (though member service is an important component of experience).

Member experience – the differentiator Gartner talks about – is the feeling your members have about you and your credit union. It’s how they experience their relationship with you. And those relationships are built on member care, trust, comfort and joy.

The digital experience most members want – and nearly demand – is the ability to connect via the channel easiest for them. If you make it easy – and your employees can quickly and accurately access the information they need to help the member – then you’re giving them the experience they expect.

Innovation and integration lead the way

Credit unions can build the technology solution that will help them establish great member experience – and retain members who may be considering moving to a better digital experience – by focusing on innovation and integration.

“Digital consumers are conditioned to access what they want, when they want it, and from whatever device they want,” says Samantha Paxson, chief experience officer, CO-OP Financial Services, as reported in CUInsight.

Paxson further points out that a strong commitment to, and competency in, an integration strategy will set credit unions on the right digital path. Unifying disparate technologies, networks, tools and solutions in one seamless and secure experience will accelerate credit union innovation.

The right integration strategy, along with a robust content services platform, gives credit unions access to valuable customer data they already have – mobile banking, debit and credit cards and ACH, for example. This information helps credit unions better understand member needs and when to make the right product offer at the right time.

Remember, too, that your employees are your members. If they have easy access to information and a complete view of the member they’re assisting, their experiences rise, too. They feel more empowered to offer advice that both gives the member what he or she needs and, perhaps, provides the credit union with a member for life.

And that’s the kind of experience we’re all looking for.

Steve Comer

Steve Comer

Steve Comer is Hyland's director of sales for financial services.

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