<p>PHOENIX, Ariz. – As credit unions continue to invest in sales and service technologies, they might find interesting what a well-known consulting firm’s latest study has found out about ROI in that area. Basically, technology spending hasn’t necessarily been translating to bolstering the bottom line, according to the “Mid-Sized Bank Study 2002″ just released by Cornerstone Advisors. The consulting firm, which also includes a number of large credit unions on its client list, studied banks of $1 billion to $20 billion in assets for this report, and says that it found that these firms overall “have not improved productivity in key sales and delivery processes, despite significant investments in technology” since a similar study in 1999. Cornerstone Advisors found back-office functions in general showed productivity improvements in the past three years, but that only marginal improvements or declines could be found in front-office processes, including teller processing, loan origination and call center operations. Many financial institutions have “invested heavily in their PC and network infrastructures, as well as Windows-based applications that surround back-end legacy systems, but we’ve found that these applications have not relieved the administrative load on the front line,” said Scott Sommer, Cornerstone Advisors president and CEO. He also said the study shows the need “to better integrate technology investments with accompanying process improvements, measurement systems and cultural changes.”</p>

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