Archive Links

Consumer Archive
CU System Archive
Market Archive
Products Archive
Washington Archive

Products Archive

Products

Malauzai Software an indicator of mobile banking growth

 Permanent link
AUSTIN, Texas (1/30/13)--Malauzai Software Inc., a provider of mobile banking applications for community financial institutions, including credit unions, said it saw significant growth in consumer demand for mobile banking in 2012.

Malauzai increased its revenue 300% in 2012. The company attributed the growth to an expanding customer base, which rose to 106 in 2012 from 30 at the end of 2011.

"Our growth in 2012 is evidence that banks and credit unions are coming to realize the benefits of a stand-alone mobile banking channel," said Robb Gaynor, Malauzai chief product officer. "Having mobile banking serve as an extension of your online channel no longer qualifies as a mobile offering, and our clients have seen tremendous success and customer feedback by adopting that philosophy.

The stand-alone model allows for fast innovation and flexibility in a mobile program, which is essential with new functionalities introduced nearly daily, Gaynor added.

Due to its expansion of app functionalities, Malauzai saw 97,000 total downloads of its SmartApps by the end of 2012, as well as more than 70,000 registered users.

Among the functionalities the company added were Picture Pay, SmarText, multi-language and mobile remote deposit capture capability.

Newtek opens California office

 Permanent link
NEW YORK (1/29/12)--Newtek Business Services, The Small Business Authority will open a western region business development business development office in Orange County, Calif. during the first quarter.

Newtek Business Services is a CUNA Strategic Services provider.

The office will be run by Tom Stier, who will serve as vice president and western region manager. Stier most recently was vice president, sales, marketing, product development and investor relations at Aurora Bank FSB, and has experience in managing residential and commercial lending.

The new office will hire up to four additional employees. The office will promote and sell the total spectrum of Newtek products, including the Newtek Advantage operating platform to distribution partners and retail accounts.

The Newtek Advantage provides the ability to access real-time data and information on electronic payment processing, payroll, web traffic statistics and insurance products.

The office is anticipated to open during the first quarter of 2013 in the Orange County region of California.

Newtek provides services to small and medium-size businesses, primarily through alliance relationships. Newtek is a non-depository institution, which means it does not compete for members' accounts. It works to preserve the relationship between members and their credit unions.

First Carolina Corporate to deploy LT correspondent gateway

 Permanent link
GREENSBORO, N.C. (1/28/13)--First Carolina Corporate CU in Greensboro, N.C., has partnered with LendingTools.com, or LT, a technology provider to correspondent financial institutions, to deploy LT's Correspondent Gateway to member credit unions.

First Carolina chose LT to provide a user friendly solution to meet its member credit unions' automated clearing house (ACH) origination, management and processing needs. Gateway incorporates all ACH functions including transaction origination, reporting and settlement in a single sign-on environment. The solution will be secured by LT's biometric multi-factor authentication system.

"We were looking for a vendor who had an all-inclusive ACH solution that would make our members' operational experience more efficient and better all around," said Sharon Gerald, manager of ACH services at the corporate.

First Carolina's member credit unions also can provide their own branded cash-management services to business members. This allows member credit unions to deploy ACH services that will integrate into First Carolina's iCAPS system for end-to-end processing, said First Carolina.

VolCorp teams with Cachet for mobile RDC

 Permanent link
MINNEAPOLIS and NASHVILLE, Tenn. (1/28/13)--Volunteer Corporate FCU has partnered with Cachet Financial Solutions to provide mobile remote deposit capture (RDC) services to VolCorp's 325 member credit unions.

The application allows credit unions' account holders to initiate mobile-deposit sessions on their smartphone or tablet by snapping a photo of an endorsed check and submitting it for processing.

Before transmitting the images, the Minneapolis-based Cachet formats the images, corrects any distortions or skewing and confirms that the image meets industry Check 21 and mobile image-quality standards.  All transactions have multiple layers of security, said Cachet Financial Solutions.

"As consumers in general demand more convenience, VolCorp continually searches for solutions that will provide members with the latest technology to compete in the mobile world," said Sandy Swofford, senior vice president of marketing and business development at VolCorp. "Cachet not only offers a high quality RDC solution, but one that is affordable for credit unions of all sizes," Swofford added.

Kehrer Saltzman acquires SCS benchmarking studies

 Permanent link
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (1/25/13)--Kehrer Saltzman & Associates will acquire Snyder Consulting Solution, and its benchmarking studies, the companies announced Thursday.

SCS founder Pete Snyder has developed retail investment services benchmarking studies for credit unions since 2007. He recently returned to The Golden 1 CU, Sacramento, Calif., as its new vice president of financial services.

The Kehrer Saltzman 2012-2013 Credit Union Retail Investment Services Productivity and Performance study will be launched later this month. Credit union executives will have access to an expanded set of benchmarking and consulting resources, including regional workshops, webinars and additional consulting services to manage their business during a time of declining margins, Kehrer Saltzman said.

Youth Week 2013 campaign materials available

 Permanent link
MADISON, Wis. (1/25/13)--The Credit Union National Association is offering art, articles, celebration materials and promotional products for National Credit Union Youth Week.

The theme of this year's National Credit Union Youth Week, April 21-27, is "Savings Sleuth--Solve the Mystery." Credit unions will be challenged to help the nation's youth solve the mystery of how to save money for meaningful purchases.

The goal of Youth Week is to start children on the path to lifelong credit union membership by educating them about their money, setting up savings accounts and rewarding them with topical prizes--while putting in the effort that increases loyalty from their parents

The National Youth Saving Challenge, sponsored by CUNA, will be held throughout the month of April. The challenge jumpstarts smart savings habits in youth and rewards 10 participants for their hard work with cash prizes.

Campaign materials offered by CUNA include financial education content, items to reward young members and apparel for credit union staff.

Lending Solutions offers employee stock ownership plan

 Permanent link
ELGIN, Ill. (1/25/13)--Lending Solutions Inc. (LSI) has established an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP).

The plan effectively transfers 30% ownership to the employees of LSI through a defined contribution benefit plan was formally introduced to the employees on Jan. 11.

An ESOP functions similar to an employee 401k or profit sharing program, where funds will be deposited annually based on the profitability of the company.

"Transitioning to an ESOP model gives us the opportunity to reward many of our long-term employees for their commitment and hard work over the years, as well as attract new employees," said Mark Johnson, Lending Solutions chairman and principal stockholder.

LSI's ESOP will be administered by a committee working in conjunction with a third-party trustee and a third-party administrator. Lending Solutions hired Innovative Shareholder Strategies throughout the development and introduction of the ESOP.

Lending Solutions offers lending center solutions and consulting services to credit unions.

Newark, NJ Mayor Booker featured at THINK 13

 Permanent link
RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (1/24/13)--Newark, N.J. Mayor Cory Booker will be among the featured speakers at the THINK 13 conference in Chicago April 29-May 2, CO-OP Financial Services announced.

Booker, an advocate of urban transformation, will address the topic, "How to Change the World With Your Bare Hands."

Booker was elected mayor of New Jersey's largest city in July 2006 and reelected in 2010. Under his tenure, Newark has experienced a substantial reduction in crime, expansion and improvement of parks and playgrounds, and an increase in affordable housing.

ATM industry manual advises on preventing cash trapping

 Permanent link
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (1/23/13)--The ATM Industry Association has published a best practice manual for preventing cash trapping at ATMs.

Cash trapping, a type of ATM crime that goes back many years, has been reinvented and is currently on the rise again in some parts of the world, including Europe.

"Although cash trapping is a rudimentary kind of attack on ATMs, these incidents can cause inconvenience, disruption to ATM services and dent consumer confidence," said Mike Lee, ATMIA CEO. "This new manual will certainly reinforce the ATM's hard-earned trusted environment and reduce the opportunity for fraudsters."

The manual defines cash trapping as any method or device used to deliberately prevent a consumer from receiving cash requested at an ATM. It analyzes all types of known cash trapping devices, including electro-mechanical devices.

It discusses and outlines best practice recommendations.

In cash trapping, thieves typically install devices inside ATMs that physically stop the money being dispensed (The Guardian Nov. 27). Devices may also be used to trap ATM cards.

Trapping differs from ATM skimming, which uses a device attached to the mouth of an ATM that swipes credit and debit card information ATM when users slip their cards into the machines.

CUAnswers expands It's Me 247 Mobile carriers

 Permanent link
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (1/22/13)--CU*Answers has expanded the number of supported carriers for the It's Me 247 Mobile Text service to 34.

The Grand Rapids, Mich.-based credit union service organization's text banking product is part of its suite of self-service products available to credit unions on the core processing platform CU*BASE.

Other self-service products include It's Me 247 Online Banking, mobile Web and app, and EasyPay bill payment.

A new look for online banking will be released this month, CU*Answers said.

CO-OP teams with Alabama's EPL

 Permanent link
RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. 1/18/13)--CO-OP Financial Services announced a working relationship with core processor EPL Inc. of Birmingham, Ala. The two companies are endorsing each other's products to the credit union industry for processing solutions.

"In conjunction with EPL, we can facilitate electronic funds transfer and core processing connectivity cost-effectively and conveniently for our clients," said Stan Hollen CO-OP Financial Services president/CEO. "CO-OP and EPL share the same commitment to our movement, as we are both owned by credit unions and operate for the exclusive benefit and service of credit unions."

EPL's i-POWER provides core processing with back office and management functions, including an accounting suite, automated exception handling, integrated report writer tool, integrated marketing resources and campaign management, core imaging system and other features.

CO-OP's EFT payment processing program includes debit, ATM and credit processing, as well as analytics, fraud and risk management, and rewards programs.

CUNA's Pressing Economic Issues Series offered on Apple

 Permanent link
MADISON, Wis. (1/17/13)--The CUNA Pressing Economic Issues Series is now accessible on Apple products, including Mac computers and iPads.

The series features 30-minute economic updates provided by Bill Hampel, CUNA senior vice president of research and policy analysis and chief economist; Mike Schenk, CUNA vice president of economics and statistics; and Steve Rick, CUNA senior economist.

"These three economists provide invaluable insight to CUNA and credit unions, and improving access is a win," said Kevin Smith, CUNA director of volunteer education.

For iPad users, sessions can be accessed by downloading the free mobile player application, Articulate. Mac users can now follow the subscription link on the CUNA Pressing Economic Issues Series page.

Now offered on the 15th of each month, the CUNA Pressing Economic Issues Series helps subscribers stay informed about pressing issues that specifically impact credit unions and discover the trends to watch as they prepare themselves for challenges ahead.

CO-OP Financial Services reaches 25 billion transactions in 2012

 Permanent link
RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (1/17/13)--CO-OP Financial Services set new records in annual, monthly and daily transaction volume during 2012--including 2.5 billion transactions for the year.

"It was another good year for CO-OP Card Payment services, reflecting the slowly improving economy," said Stan Hollen, president/CEO of the processor of electronic payments by credit union members. "With the resolution of fiscal issues and continued economic improvement, we hope to see an even stronger year in 2013."

The 2.5 billion transaction figure for 2012 is a 13.6% increase over the 2.2 billion processed in 2011. It includes cardholder debit, credit, ATM and shared-branch payments. The company exceeded the two billion transaction mark for the first time in 2010, and reached the one billion milestone originally in 2004.

In addition to the new annual mark, CO-OP reached a new single month transaction record in December with 230 million transactions. On Dec. 22, the company established a new single day transaction record with nine million payments processed.

CO-OP has 3,500 credit unions as clients, which includes 30 million credit union cardholders.

CUNA Lending Compliance School dates set

 Permanent link
MADISON, Wis. (1/16/13)--Gaining a better understanding of credit union lending compliance is the appeal of the CUNA Lending Compliance School June 2-6 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

The school offers credit union professionals a comprehensive curriculum focused on in-depth compliance topics in all disciplines of lending. Attendees at this year's school will:

  • Participate in a compliance management system interactive project, walking through the regulatory change process from proposed rule to implementation;
  • Gain in-depth knowledge from the 12 new breakout sessions with topics such as consumer, residential real estate and member business lending;
  • Discover high-demand topics in smaller segments and dive into the details of loan modifications, mortgage rules, new consumer rules, fair lending, bankruptcy basics, pre-screening rules and more;
  • Learn about the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau through a general session that is followed by breakouts on individual rules; and
  • Network during more than five hours of team projects and lending challenge breakout sessions.

SHAZAM rolls out debit mobile app

 Permanent link
DES MOINES, Iowa (1/15/13)--The SHAZAM ATM network has launched a mobile application that provides debit cardholders with free access to their checking accounts.

SHAZAM BOLT$, available to smartphone and tablet users, allows debit cardholders to check balances and set parameters for e-mail alerts. Eventually, users will be able to make person-to-person transfers, the company said.

The application also alerts cardholders to potentially fraudulent activity on their accounts. The alerts are generated when a suspicious purchase is detected, based on:

  • Purchases above amounts specified by the cardholder;
  • Card-not-present transactions; and
  • Suspicious or high-risk transactions.
E-mail alerts will help halt fraud attempts more quickly, said Dan Kramer, SHAZAM senior vice president of marketing and merchant services. "By providing nearly real-time transaction alerts via email--a communication vehicle cardholders are using for everyday interaction--credit unions and community banks will have a more direct line to cardholders, not only limiting fraud losses but potentially improving customer service."

The application can be configured to match a financial institution's branding, including name and logo. A Web version also is available for cardholders who prefer to access the tool from a desktop computer or mobile browser.

SHAZAM is offering the mobile app free to its network participating financial institutions.

Fiserv acquires core processor Open Solutions

 Permanent link
BROOKFIELD, Wis. (1/15/13)--Financial services technology solution provider Fiserv Inc. announced Monday it has acquired core processor Open Solutions Inc. for $55 million.

Fiserv also assumed about $960 million of debt through the deal, which was completed Monday. It will receive an acquired tax asset with a net present value at the time of the purchase of roughly $165 million.

The Glastonbury, Conn.-based Open Solutions provides technology to credit unions and other financial institutions.

The acquisition means that Brookfield, Wis.-based Fiserv will add several new technologies to its offerings, including DNA, a real-time open technology account processing platform that will enable collaboration and technology sharing through DNAcreator and DNAappstore to deliver service.

Other technologies acquired include the CUnify and TotalPlus account processing platforms, Weiland Account Analysis for commercial accounts, tools that enable the creation and sharing of client-developed functionality, and Raddon Financial Group, a performance consulting service.

Founded in 1992, Open Solutions serves more than 3,300 clients worldwide, including more than 800 account processing clients. Fiserv will offer these clients add-on solutions such as its CheckFreeRXP electronic bill payment service, ACCEL/Exchange payments network, debit processing services, Popmoney social payments service, Corillian Online banking, Mobiliti mobile banking, and more.

"Open Solutions provides several growth opportunities, including a real-time account processing capability that serves multiple charter types, languages and currencies on a single platform," said Jeffery Yabuki, Fiserv president/CEO.

Louis Hernandez Jr., Open Solutions chairman and CEO,  noted that "joining Fiserv provides us with significant resources that will benefit our clients and increase market momentum."

Fiserv said it expects to add some of its Acumen account processing platform features to the DNA technology platform over time. During the next several years, it expects annualized revenues of at least $75 million and annualized costs of more than $50 million related to the purchase.

Agility hosts free flu webinar Wed

 Permanent link
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (1/15/13)--Agility Recovery will host a free webinar Wednesday on the current status of the flu affecting the U.S.

The webinar, "The 2013 Flu Outbreak: Risks and Ways to Prepare," will be held from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. ET.

Agility Recovery is a CUNA Strategic Services Provider.

With 47 states now reporting "widespread" flu activity, a Centers for Disease Control (CDC) report show that deaths from pneumonia and flu are "slightly above the epidemic threshold." 

In the webinar, Dr. Michael Jhung, lead medical officer in the CDC's Influenza Division, will outline steps credit unions can take to reduce the risk to staff, employees and members.

Topics on preparedness will include:

  • Maintaining a healthy work environment;
  • Staying informed;
  • Cross-training employees;
  • Preparing for telecommuting needs;
  • Diversifying the supply chain; and
  • Updating sick, family and medical leave policies.
To register for the meeting, use the link.

Connections Online upgraded from beta

 Permanent link
CLEVELAND (1/14/13)--Software developer and leadership consultant Cardwell has upgraded its work management tool, Connections Online 4.1, from beta.

Connections Online helps credit unions enhance productivity, streamline communication, decrease operation costs, complete more projects under budget and on time, and prioritize tasks.

Enhancements to Connections Online 4.1 include iPad compatibility, a Windows 7 interface look and feel, multiple-browser capability and one-click functionality.

Connections Online features include:

  • Excel templates for projects and metrics;
  • Scorecards for measuring personal goals;
  • Linking among lists;
  • Security; and
  • Metric tracking.

CUAnswers challenges CUs to post biz plans

 Permanent link
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (1/11/13)--CU*Answers is challenging credit unions to post their business plans online as a way to stress the value of cooperative financial institutions to members and consumers.

CU*Answers, a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based credit union service organization, released a video in cooperation with Fulvew Productions to promote a "Take Your Business Plan Viral" campaign. The video stresses the value proposition credit unions offer consumers, but explains how that value is often overlooked.

"It's not easy to translate all of the core philosophies and ethics of our industry into the way consumers think today, especially when it is just second nature to all of us," said Randy Karnes, CU*Answers CEO. "To the marketplace, when we say 'member' or 'belong' or even 'people helping people,' they're just words. But as cooperatives, we are relevant, we are timely, we are timeless."

To view the video, use the link.

VINtek helps lenders serve military borrowers

 Permanent link
PHILADELPHIA (1/10/13)--VINtek, a Philadelphia-based provider of automotive collateral management and electronic lien and title (ELT) services for automotive finance lenders, has secured a 50% market share among the country's military-focused credit unions.

"Lenders want to be there for their military borrowers, and as a valued supplier, VINtek wants to be there for the lender," said Larry Highbloom, VINtek president.

"By providing technology and service that can be leveraged to improve the interaction between lenders and their customers anytime, we act to enhance the consumer experience worldwide. We are honored to support our military-focused lenders in making life a little easier for our service men and women everywhere," he said.

VINtek uses VINtekTIME automotive collateral management system and its eSignature and eContracting to support military borrowers.   

VINtekTIME helps lenders operate 24-hour call centers to accommodate the needs of military members living overseas. VINtek's "Direct-to-Consumer" eSignature and eContracting services permit the electronic presentment of loan and Department of Motor Vehicle documents along with eSignature for lender loan documents. Military borrowers, even with spouses separated due to deployment, can access their auto-loan documents anytime and anywhere they have Internet access.

Diebold rolls out cardless ATM

 Permanent link
NORTH CANTON, Ohio (1/9/13)--Diebold has integrated the ATM with mobile devices through "the cloud," allowing consumers to complete secure, cardless transactions.

Diebold is a CUNA Strategic Services provider.

The new ATM also allows for "touch gestures," such as flick and drag, commonly used with smartphones and tablet devices.

Diebold said it designed the ATM to look and act like a mobile device. The ATM also is paperless, delivering transaction receipts via text message or e-mail, based on user preferences.

To complete a cardless withdrawal, card holders scan the ATM's quick response code using their smartphones. When the devices sync through the cloud, a transaction screen appears on the smartphone and the card holder selects the withdrawal amount. The cloud server then sends to the smartphone a one-time code, which the consumer enters on the ATM screen to authenticate the transaction and receive cash.

.

Because the ATM uses cloud-based services, it does not require computers, which means it requires significantly less power than traditional machines, Diebold said. The paperless environment also saves money on raw materials. With less hardware to maintain and no dispensable paper to replenish, financial institutions may realize greater uptime for ATMs, Diebold said.

Diebold plans to pilot the new ATM later this year.

CUNA Economics & Investment Conference registration opens

 Permanent link
MADISON, Wis. (1/9/13)--The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Economics & Investments Conference, to be held Aug. 4-7 in San Francisco, will provide a credit union-specific perspective of the U.S. economy, with an eye toward the future.

Featured speakers include Bill Hampel, CUNA senior vice president of research and policy analysis and chief economist; Mike Schenk, CUNA vice president of economics and statistics;  and Steve Rick, CUNA senior economist, who will provide facts and numbers on the U.S. economy and how they will impact credit unions in the coming fiscal year.

All three of CUNA economists are widely quoted in the national news media, providing a credit union perspective to national economic news.

"Every year our economists draw large crowds for their highly regarded insight into today's economic realities and tomorrow's economic future," said Kevin Smith, CUNA director of volunteer Education. The conference will provide "a wealth of information from these CUNA economists. Over the course of this three-day workshop credit union professionals will get an entire year's worth of credit union specific-economic information that they can then use to build their strategic plans and map out their future business initiatives."

They will address these topics:

  • Key players who shape the U.S. economy;
  • Practical tools for managing credit union finances;
  • Investment strategies that will keep credit unions competitive;
  • Asset-liability management techniques; and
  • Current regulatory issues affecting credit unions.

CUAnswers completes Dashboard Deep Dive

 Permanent link
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (1/8/13)--Grand Rapids, Mich.-based credit union service organization CU*Answers will hold its final Dashboard Deep Dive session today.

The company has held three sessions of its weekly initiative hosted by CU*Answers CEO Randy Karnes and other experts focused on helping credit union's use the company's flagship core data processing system, CU*BASE, more efficiently.

The Deep Dive session hosted on Dec. 12 focused on member retention by age group by year opened--allowing credit unions to grasp when individuals are opening memberships and tracking what the retention is over time.

On Dec. 19, Karnes explored account retention by age group and year opened--a similar function, but specifically for review of sub-accounts.

On Dec. 27, CU*Answers reviewed the relationship analysis tool--a way to segment the membership by age ranges and gender for use in analytics or member communications.

The company also held a Jan. 3 Deep Dive session.

Also, CU*Answers has published a new reference booklet for in-house processing credit unions. The Statement Processing & Verification Tasks handbook is a compilation of all the procedures, tips, and knowledge about what CU*Answers does each month to ensure member statements are issued efficiently.

CUNA announces new ERM Institute for directors

 Permanent link
MADISON, Wis. (1/7/13)--The Credit Union National Association, in collaboration with The Rochdale Group Inc., has announced a new risk management institute for directors.

The CUNA Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Institute for Directors will take place April 17-19 in Las Vegas.

The institute will provide credit union directors with tools to incorporate risk management into the culture of their credit unions. With expertise from ERM consultants of The Rochdale Group Inc., attendees will gain an understanding of their role in the ERM process and the ability to establish a risk culture in their credit unions.

"CUNA and The Rochdale Group are focused on delivering ERM solutions to credit unions," stated Tony Ferris, Partner at The Rochdale Group. "With the increasing importance of enhanced organizational risk management for credit unions, we believe that leveraging the strengths of our organizations will allow us to better assist credit union directors with their ERM needs and decision-making."

The institute is the second activity presented through the CUNA and The Rochdale Group collaboration. The collaboration also provides the CUNA Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Certification Institute.

MY CU Service launches group-buying program

 Permanent link
MIDDLETOWN, Pa. (1/7/13)--MY CU Services LLC has launched Workplace Essentials, a group-buying program to lower credit union supply costs.

"Workplace Essentials is the first offering in our new 'Cooperative Purchase' program," said Drew Kishbaugh, MY CU Services president/CEO. He noted that "the best path forward for credit unions is to take advantage of the group buy, where they can combine their resources to obtain better pricing for all."

MY CU Services has partnered with W.B. Mason to offer Workplace Essentials, which includes office supplies, furniture, break room and facility maintenance products, promotional products and a wide selection of environmentally friendly products, Kishbaugh said.

"We were able to negotiate exceptional terms with W.B. Mason that only credit unions purchasing under our umbrella account can access," Kishbaugh continued. The free program has next-day delivery with no minimum order size.

CO-OP opens registration for THINK

 Permanent link
RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (1/4/13)--Registration is open for CO-OP Financial Services' THINK 13 conference, to be held April 29-May 2 in Chicago.

"Disrupt Business as Usual" is the theme of the conference. 

Speakers include:

  • Scott Belsky, author of "Making Ideas Happen," and founder of the behance.net online portfolio platform for creative professionals.
  • John Costello, chief global marketing and innovation officer for Dunkin' Brands Group Inc., who has helped his company compete successfully against Starbucks.
  • Margaret Heffernan, a corporate CEO, entrepreneur and author of "Willful Blindness: Why We Ignore the Obvious at our Peril."
  • David Robertson, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania and author of "Brick by Brick," an examination of LEGO's corporate turnaround.
The early bird registration deadline is Jan. 31.

CUNA HR/TD Council white paper discusses changing benefits

 Permanent link
MADISON, Wis. (1/3/13)--Reduced benefits budgets and shifting costs, the result of increased costs and regulatory changes, have forced organizations to be more creative in offering competitive benefits, according to a new white paper from CUNA HR/TD Council.

Trends discussed in the white paper, "Credit Union Benefits Programs: Meet Employees' and Your CU's Financial Needs," include:

  •  Reviewing the benefits landscape;
  •  Assessing popular program components;
  •  Analyzing program competitiveness;
  •  Conducting a cost analysis; and
  •  Making and implementing benefits decisions.
The paper also includes three cases studies featuring credit unions that have successfully modified their benefits programs to meet employee needs and credit unions' financial needs.

In the paper, Kevin Pailet, senior vice president of Dallas-based Prescott Pailet Benefits, named his five top employee benefits tips. They include:

  • Quality retirement plans. Over 50% of Gen Y workers consider long-term financial security very important, after experiencing the recession. Providing a retirement plan with many cost-effective investment options and a matching contribution can help attract and retain these young people.
  • Short-term disability coverage with no pre-existing condition exclusion. Many employees would have difficulty covering basic living expenses in the event of a short-term loss of wages.
  • Long-term disability coverage. Employers can provide this valued benefit for a fraction of the cost of other types of insurance.
  • Voluntary benefits. Gen X and Y workers have proved willing to pay for certain voluntary benefits and many Baby Boomers appreciate critical-illness coverage.
  • Consumer education and advocacy. With today's complex consumer-driven, high deductible health plans, employees need education and access to a health care advocate to help obtain better pricing, appeal claims, and much more.
To download the paper, use the link.

DocuTech participates in CFPB initiative

 Permanent link
IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (1/2/13)--DocuTech Corp., an Idaho Falls, Idaho-based mortgage document compliance services provider, is leading a response from lenders to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB) recently announced Project Catalyst, which seeks to involve mortgage executives in testing new disclosure forms.

.

The CFPB has been working on new mortgage disclosure forms, which outline the expected closing costs and terms of the mortgage for consumers, for the past 18 months. As part of this initiative, the bureau's goal is to encourage credit unions, banks and other financial services companies to propose and conduct trial disclosure programs.

DocuTech is leading a group of lenders in testing different formats to provide feedback to the CFPB.

"The CFPB recognizes that what seems like a good idea in theory often hits unexpected obstacles when put into full production," said Scott K. Stucky, DocuTech chief operating officer. "We are in a unique position to help lenders not only evaluate the disclosures from a content perspective, but to also test ease of implementation and the impact to operations."