The buzzword we have been hearing a lot of lately is ‘merger.’ Credit unions are merging left and right, particularly boutique credit unions. But is a merger the best option?
Some credit unions will stand firm and tell you that there will never come a day when they should consider it. Others are barely floating above water and may be exploring the advantage of joining forces. The good news is that there is a mountain of support and options available to these boutique credit unions. These include State Leagues, CUNA, NCUA’s Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives (OSCUI), and CUSOs just to name a few.
In a recent article posted by The Financial Brand, in 1969, the number of federally insured credit unions in the U.S. peaked at 23,000 and today, there are just over 5,100, even as the total number of members and assets continues to grow. It appears mergers aren’t such a new occurrence.
Some common areas that boutique credit unions may be struggling with are outdated technology, keeping Board leadership, increasing engagement, member growth, generating income, and dealing with increasing costs overall.
Boutique credit unions must collaborate with others to gain access to technology, best practices, and expertise that alone they might not either be able to afford or benefit from. One way to do this is to outsource some pieces of the business to true business partners, like a credit union website design company, instead of hiring someone in-house. Your website should be updated every 2 years, so why hire someone year-round when you only need this service every other year?
Outsourcing your website design frees up resources to devote elsewhere and can assist in driving member and loan growth. With this task off your team’s plate, the focus can be back on championing the credit union difference, where at the end of the day you are “people helping people.”
If you’re looking to avoid a merger, an innovative website that is easy to navigate, makes members’ financial needs effortlessly accessible, and reaches new potential members is a great place to start.
Uncommn is the preferred web development partner for innovative credit unions that seek control over their online presence. Let us help your boutique credit union showcase your tech-savvy, members first approach with confidence. We do this by creating a truly delightful, stress-free experience for everyone involved, building trust through respect.