The next guest on CU Crossroads- 5 Question Series was Brian Lauer, Partner at Messick Lauer & Smith P.C. The topic of discussion with him was ‘Changes in Focus of Credit Unions and CUSOs’. Below are the takeaways from his interview:
- One of the key changes that many CUSOs are adjusting to during the pandemic is the lack in-person engagement with the credit union community that had been created through conferences and industry events. Though most CUSOs are still able to fully serve their clients in a remote work environment, they miss the personal interactions and opportunity to network with new contacts.
- Credit union members are spending a lot more time at home and as a result, are increasingly focused on home improvements. They are also purchasing fewer cars. Currently, some of the most pertinent CUSO services help credit unions pivot to where the member need is, identifying and delivering the most relevant solutions, such as home equity lines.
- Credit unions collaborating with CUSOs has always been instrumental to the success of both parties. During the pandemic, the emphasis on collaboration is even greater. Credit unions are looking to CUSOs – and also working with each other more – to increase their ability to deliver digital and mobile solutions and offer “best in breed” solutions to their members.
- Credit unions are adjusting to and preparing for ongoing financial strain on their members caused by the pandemic. At the same time, members that can are saving more, and credit unions are looking for strategic uses of increased deposits.
- The pandemic has caused many credit unions to re-evaluate their branch and office footprint to determine which commercial real estate assets are truly necessary.