I hear more and more talk about credit union relevance – specifically whether it can be maintained. Credit unions have long been the underdogs in a marketplace dominated by big banks. Now the Walmarts and Amazons and Facebooks of the world are poised to take their own cuts of the financial services action. Can credit unions maintain any semblance of relevance in this topsy-turvy marketplace?I believe the answer is yes, through the effective use of technology. Thus, I offer my three tech tips for maintaining – and even increasing – credit union relevance.Stop playing “technology me too”Many credit unions let big banks take the lead, then dutifully follow along. They look at what big banks are doing and then from that they develop a checklist of must-have technologies. Credit unions can no longer obsess over what the bank next door is doing. They need to think about technology in new and exciting ways. If you need an example of how to properly manage technology, look to the companies that are doing it exceedingly well – companies like Apple and Amazon. Chart your own technology course and stop trying to be Mini Me to the Dr. Evil Bank down the street.Explore new channelsHere’s just one example. Have you ever looked into getting your credit on LendingTree? If you have, I’m sure it wasn’t for long. You quickly realized that the amount of effort probably wasn’t worth the return. Does that mean credit unions shouldn’t be on LendingTree? Not necessarily.A new client of ours, a CUSO called CU Lending Cooperative (www.yourculc.com), has created a powerful, fast lending platform that essentially puts participating credit unions on LendingTree. (Note: LendingTree is CULC’s first venue, but definitely not its last.) The loan offer is initially presented as CULC. Then if a borrower accepts the offer, the CULC software instantly identifies which credit union the borrower is eligible for. CULC books the loan, funds the loan, and deposits the funds into a new share account at the credit union regardless of your core platform. That’s powerful stuff.Focus on member experienceUnless you just logged onto the internet for the first time yesterday, you’ve seen your user experience evolve over the years. That’s because the Googles, Apples, Facebooks and Amazons of the world are intent on constantly improving the user experience of their customers. It’s not a one and done proposition; it’s a never-ending quest. These giants have created an expectation in consumers that their user experience today will be just a little better than it was yesterday.Now think about the member experience at your credit union. Has it changed much over the past few years? More to the point, have you made any specific efforts to change it over the past few years? If your member experience isn’t intentionally evolving, your credit union is falling behind – behind the big banks and especially behind your new non-bank competitors.Technology has long been known as the great equalizer. Deploy the same technology as the big banks and you can compete with the big banks, right? Except today, there’s more to technology than just a checklist. It’s no longer about what pieces you own; it’s about the unique experiences you build around those pieces. 11SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,John San Filippo John is the co-founder of OmniChannel Communications, Inc., a company that specializes in B2B marketing to community financial institutions. He started out in the savings and loan industry, but wisely … Web: www.omnichannelcommunications.com Details
After an already illustrious career, Wisconsin Basketball star-forward Ethan Happ will play one final season with the Badgers. Happ announced his decision last night via Twitter with just six hours remaining before the withdrawal deadline for the 2018 NBA draft.Happ’s decision not to sign an agent prior to the draft allowed him the option to withdraw from consideration at any point before the May 31 deadline. While most did not think he would leave for the pros, Happ’s late withdrawal certainly left many Badger fans feeling anxious.The forward announced his intentions to declare for the NBA Draft following a season-ending loss to Michigan State in March. At the time, Happ was hoping to boost his stock with a potential NBA Combine invite that he ended up not receiving.Nigel Hayes discusses student athlete compensation, player boycottsNigel Hayes spoke at the “Future of College Sports: Reimagining Athlete Pay” panel The Aspen Institute hosted in Washington D.C. Tuesday. Here, Read…While Happ has undoubtedly been a stellar player for Wisconsin, many scouts feel his pro potential is questionable. The biggest knocks against him are his lack of a jump shot and poor lower body strength, both of which could hurt his ability to defend against more athletic NBA players.But Happ’s phenomenal footwork and attention to basketball fundamentals make his NBA prospect intriguing. If the rising senior can take a page from his predecessor Frank Kaminsky’s playbook and add a jump shot to his repertoire, Happ would almost certainly become a first-round pick and potentially a lottery selection to boot.For these reasons, Wisconsin will gladly welcome Happ back for his last year as the Badgers look to return to the NCAA Tournament.After a plethora of injuries, Wisconsin seems geared to compete with the Big Ten’s best next season. Last year’s starting point guard D’Mitrik Trice and freshman Kobe King will return after missing nearly all but the first 10 games of the 2017-18 season.A look back at this semester in sports: Performances, seasons, careers that defined spring 2018This semester is almost through — I know this because I saw the sun last week and haven’t been to Read…Additionally, star guard Brad Davison is expected to have recovered from a shoulder injury that hampered him for most of the 2017-18 season after undergoing surgery in March.With Happ rounding out the roster, and many of the younger players developing, this could be the best Wisconsin team we’ll see for a couple years as most of the team’s talent is focused in its second year players. Davison, Nate Reuvers and Aleem Ford highlight this class.Wisconsin and Happ will kickoff the season on Dec. 8 versus Marquette.
“The Benchwarmers,” about grown-up geeks taking on Little League baseball teams, did not screen in advance for critics, generally a sign the studio expects reviews would be bad. The handful of reviews that did make it out over opening weekend were generally poor, but “The Benchwarmers” managed a solid box office batting average among its teen and twenty-something target audience, a group unlikely to seek out reviews for a lowbrow comedy. TOP 10 MOVIES Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Exhibitor Relations Co. Inc. 1. “Ice Age: The Meltdown,” $34.5 million. 2. “The Benchwarmers,” $20.5 million. 3. “Take the Lead,” $12.8 million. 4. “Inside Man,” $9.2 million. 5. “Lucky Number Slevin,” $7.1 million. 6. “Failure to Launch,” $4.1 million. 7. “ATL,” $3.75 million. 8. “V for Vendetta,” $3.4 million. 9. “Phat Girlz,” $3.1 million. 10. “Thank You for Smoking,” $2.4 million.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREOregon Ducks football players get stuck on Disney ride during Rose Bowl eventThe Weinstein Co. crime romp “Lucky Number Slevin,” starring Josh Hartnett, Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman and Ben Kingsley, debuted at No. 5 with $7.1 million. Fox Searchlight’s comedy “Phat Girlz,” starring Mo’Nique as a designer of plus-size clothes, premiered at No. 9 with $3.1 million. “Ice Age: The Meltdown,” with Ray Romano, Denis Leary, John Leguizamo and Queen Latifah providing the voices of prehistoric creatures on the run from global warming, raised its 10-day domestic total to $116.4 million. It became the first movie released this year to cross the $100 million mark. While the first few months of the year are Hollywood’s slowest, the industry usually has produced a $100 million hit by February or March. “This is a late bloomer,” said Paul Dergarabedian, president of box office tracker Exhibitor Relations. Still, Hollywood had another big showing overall, with revenues soaring for a second straight weekend. The top 12 movies took in $105.1 million, up 33 percent from the same weekend in 2005. Score one for the prehistoric animals. The 20th Century Fox family tale “Ice Age: The Meltdown” took in $34.5 million to remain the No. 1 movie for a second straight weekend, according to studio estimates Sunday. The animated sequel fended off Sony’s Rob Schneider-David Spade baseball comedy “The Benchwarmers,” which debuted as runner-up with $20.5 million. Premiering in third place was New Line’s “Take the Lead,” a ballroom dance tale starring Antonio Banderas that took in $12.8 million.