Getting the Most Out of Your Decision Engine Technology

by Michael Cochrum
Getting the Most Out of Your Decision Engine Technology

May is an awkward month. It’s as if it is not sure exactly what it wants to be.  Some days in May are more like April; some are more like June.  Perhaps that is where we got the word “May”-be?  But, one thing that is certain about May is that it is the month of graduation ceremonies, and much like the month itself, graduates are at that awkward point in life, where the future is not quite certain.

Recently, I had the opportunity to attend a college commencement ceremony, and the air was filled with excitement and anticipation. As many millennials say today, it is time to “Adult”.  It dawned on me through the three-hour ceremony as I looked down on a couple of thousand graduates, sadly, not all of these individuals will become who they dreamt of being.  Some will find themselves sidetracked by many of life’s diversions, and end up taking an alternate course.  Some will discover who they thought they wanted to be is not who they want to be at all.  This is true for many, whether they receive a college degree or not.

So, what is the difference between those who “make it” and those that do not. It really boils down to one simple word, “execution.”  In other words, the only way to get to where we want to be is by taking that first step.  This is also true for credit unions.  Most every credit union’s history starts with the same storyline – two men with a box in their employer’s basement – but not all have reached what their founders believed they would be when they started out, or feel as if their best days are behind them.  The difference between those that do and those that don’t is not some sort of preferential treatment, because all credit unions operate in the same economic and regulatory environment.  No, the difference is in the way they execute on strategy.

Many credit unions have invested in technology in hopes that the tools they have acquired will help them be more efficient or improve the member experience. Some have spent considerable time and financial resources to implement these technologies, only to have under-utilized the features (and full benefits) of the technology that promises to get them where they want to be.  Much like the college graduate who views the degree as the pinnacle rather than the path, there are those credit unions that have fallen for the notion that acquiring the technology, in and of itself, is the goal to be met.

But, there are also rising stars. Over the last eighteen months, many credit unions nationwide have begun to look, once again, at their technology, and how to fully optimize it to increase efficiencies, lower costs and improve the member experience.   I have worked with over thirty of these credit unions, to help optimize their lending decision engines, which has resulted in increasing system decision applications from zero to over 40%.  Some have revamped their lending programs to better position themselves in a market that has changed since the credit union was founded, and others have put analytics in place to ensure that every member is treated fairly and that the products and services they provide are what the next generation of members is looking for.

Spring, and May in particular, is a time of transition and renewal. This may be a great time for your credit union to consider (or re-consider) what steps need to be taken to optimize the technology you are relying on to reach the goals you have set out for.  CU Direct’s Advisory Services can help your credit union determine those steps, and get the most out of its decision engine technology.

About the Author

Michael Cochrum
Michael Cochrum is the Executive Lending Advisor for CU Direct.