Why Humans Are The Key To Technology At PEFCU
The surge in electronic transactions at Purdue Employees' Federal Credit Union (PEFCU) can be attributed in part to the year-old, "McDonald's-like" branding of its technology and five "retail outlets," according to Amy Keith, special projects manager of systems technology at the credit union.
"When you're in PEFCU, there's no mistake about it," Keith told an audience of credit union IT managers the
Since its retail branch prototype opened in May 2001, the West Lafayette, Ind.-based CU has seen bill pay
And online banking transactions are up by 45%. All in all, lower-cost electronic transactions now make up 86% of
The secret is that while PEFCU's electronic channels take center stage at branches, member service representatives
"When you walk into one of our branches, the first thing you're going to see is our electronics," said Keith. "Then
Members perplexed by the online banking options or the biometric log-in kiosks at the front of all branches are
Showing members the tech ropes feeds the $350-million CU's electronic transaction volume, Keith said.
Finally, in the background are video stations with live, remote tellers dispensing cash.
"We didn't want our members to see our tellers running check tapes or night deposits, and we wanted to create a
At the same time, the remote video tellers balance out the extremes between electronic and human service.
Asked by a CU manager in attendance about the expense of transforming PEFCU's branches into retail outlets with
Though Keith wouldn't report expense figures, she said the project came out at "very over $1-million."
The increase in capital investment was partially accommodated by a decrease in head count, Keith added.
Goal: Raise Balances
PEFCU, with a tech groove well cut even before the branding effort, realized it needed to clean up its act in order to
"We wanted to raise our average share balance," Keith explained. "Many members aren't real credit union believers.
Though Keith did not report figures, she said PEFCU has seen an increase in average share balance since the retail
Standardizing and branding "was a bit of a change for us on the tech side," Keith continued. "In the past, we didn't
Last year, Gail Koehler, PEFCU's VP of technology and retail delivery, told The CU Journal that electronic
PEFCU is not alone in standardizing its retail space. Washington Mutual Bank branches, for example, can be
"You walk into Washington Mutual and they sell every darn product under the sun to you and get you to use the new
"When you're in Washington Mutual, you don't even know you're in a teller line," Weber added. "It's a tightly