CubicsPlus Seen As Way For Small CUs To Act Big

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Small credit unions can afford the advanced, in-house architecture used in larger CU core processing systems with the wider release of the CubicsPlus platform.

The CUBICS offspring will bring up to speed approximately 260 IntegraSys credit union clients, ranging from $1-million to $50-million in assets, according to Dave Campbell, IntegraSys senior vice president and general manager for CubicsPlus.

Developed using the Microsoft .NET framework and SQL 2000 database with an XML interface, CubicsPlus replaces the 30 year-old, DOS-based IntegraSys CUBICS system.

IntegraSys provides the CubicsPlus, Premier, CUBE and Charlotte core systems. Formerly known as the EDS Credit Union Industry Group before it was acquired and renamed last year by Fiserv, Inc., IntegraSys "supports the entire credit union market," said Campbell.

"The leading-edge technology of CubicsPlus levels the playing field," Campbell continued. "Smaller credit unions can add a la carte the same lending, homebanking, audio response and back-office solutions being run by the biggest institutions in the country."

CubicsPlus is priced for smaller credit unions, however, said Campbell. Competitors' in-house systems go for $80,000 to $200,000, he claimed. But IEC FCU in Springfield, Ill. paid $30,000 for CUBICS in 1994 and recently a "small" upgrade fee for CubicsPlus, according to Tootie Holmes, manager at the 2,200-member CU.

Pricing varies according to CU size and services, Campbell added.

A CUBICS user since 1994, IEC FCU started using CubicsPlus about two months ago and was one of the first credit unions to pilot the system.

"Having the system in-house gives us the opportunity to be in control," Holmes said. "And what we save by going in-house allows us to add-on hosted services such as homebanking and bill pay that we might not be able to add if we went with service-bureau. The service-bureau expense just isn't an option, especially for small CUs."

The CubicsPlus .NET, SQL and XML architecture will make it easier to integrate and customize new solutions for CUs, said Campbell.

"We'll be able to develop and add-on products for small-and mid-sized credit unions much faster than with CUBICS," he said. "We've owed these credit unions a system-rewrite for a couple years."

Both the IntegraSys lending platform, Loan Advantage, and back office management software, Wisdom, can already be directly integrated with CubicsPlus, said Campbell.

IEC, a $12.2-million-CU serving rural, electric and telephone cooperatives in Illinois, will soon be relieved of some manual data entry when it integrates Loan Advantage with CubicsPlus and begins to accept online consumer loan applications, Holmes said.

Holmes is particularly attracted to the CubicsPlus Ad Hoc reporting module. "We now have a lot more of our members' information at our fingertips," she said.

"We'll be able to do more marketing ourselves using the data we gather from custom reports and queries using Microsoft Access," she said. "For example, we've been able to track our new and closed accounts and our monthly loan volume."

Clients call a 24-hour toll free number for CubicsPlus technical support, Campbell continued.

"Anytime we call for support, we always get immediate action," said Holmes. "I know the people behind IntegraSys, and I know they will always be there for us."

CUJ Resources

For more info:

* IEC FCU at www.iecfcu.com

* IntegraSys at www.integrasys.fiserv.com

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