When Requesting Vendor Proposals, Do It the Right Way
Repeated regulatory assessments, increased credit risk, drops in key revenue sources and increasing compliance burdens are all making it harder than ever for credit unions to stay healthy and continue to serve members. To meet these challenges and protect their long-term prospects, many credit unions are focusing like never before on expense management.
In addition, the NCUA is increasingly stressing the need for stronger levels of third-party vendor due diligence and we are seeing credit unions reexamining some of their most central vendor relationships. As an organization serving more than 3,000 member credit unions, CSCU is well attuned to the importance of these needs and we hope that each and every credit union embraces them. Such reviews should be a part of regular management discipline and board direction.
Make Sure They Are Experienced in CU Operations and Platform Functionality
Just as many credit unions are stressed, many consultants are struggling to find new sources of revenue as their past business models struggle. This is particularly true as related to card processing requests for proposal. For example, someone who used to sell other services (e.g. credit card portfolio sales) might reposition themselves as an expert in operational consulting and processing RFPs. This can lead to many problems, foremost among them that the personnel working on the project do not have day-to-day operational experience running card businesses but are instead repositioned salespeople. This would not make them bad people, only the wrong pick for your needs. For RFPs of this sort, your adviser needs to understand not just expense invoices, but the nuts-and-bolts operations of the separate technical systems and related platform capability and functionality across the organization.