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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – With its banking roots, it’s no surprise that Fidelity National’s MISER system is popular with credit unions looking to get deeper into serving business accounts. But Fidelity says that perception is not indicative of the overall retail power of the MISER system. MISER was the flagship system of Aurum Technology, which was formerly the community banking processing arm of EDS. Fidelity acquired Aurum in 2004. “Some in the credit union industry believe MISER is a play for those that want to be into business banking. This is a credit union that is a retail institution,” said Santo Cannone, senior vice president of Fidelity’s Integrated Solutions division. Cannone oversees the company’s credit union business. Wings Financial isn’t the type of credit union that would be going after business accounts. It is the former NWA FCU (originally chartered to serve employees of Northwest Airlines) that was one of the first to get a Trade, Industry and Profession charter from NCUA, allowing it to serve groups like the Federal Aviation Administration and others tied to the air transportation industry. Wings has happily been on the USERS system since 1991. David Mason, VP and CIO for Wings, described USERS as a great business partner, but the time was right for Wings to take a look at its processing and where it wants to be a few years down the line. Mason said price played a major factor in its decision to convert. He said the CU could have done a lot of custom programming with the USERS system, but decided it wasn’t worth it. “You spend more time retro-fitting custom code every time there’s a release. Your efficiency ratio goes down hill in a hurry,” he said. As always when a big CU is in play, the Request for Proposal process is intense. Mason said the CU came up with a list of 11 processors it wanted to evaluate. Right off the bat two of them indicated they weren’t comfortable with being the converting processor for Wings. Based on the proposals, Wings narrowed the list down to three candidates. The processors then came in and gave Wings in-depth overviews of their solutions, with the visits lasting as long as three days. Wings personnel also did site visits with the processors and some credit unions. “I learned that the industry was in a little bit of flux in my mind. A number of processors out there are reinventing themselves. Summit and XP were in the middle of major overhauls. In some ways our timing appeared to be a little off,” said Mason. The CU’s evaluation process actually started back in 2003, and it didn’t finalize the contracts until just recently. Mason said Wings knew what it wanted going in- a flexible system that would allow seamless integration of CRM. “We were looking to gain efficiency through the use of integrated CRM, the workflow aspects of teller member service platform,” said Mason. Wings was attracted to MISER’s tight integration of CRM workflow through the system’s new ViewPoint front end. He said the CU plans to use it to enhance sales and service through campaign tracking, cross selling, sales referral tracking, and other techniques. Cannone believes CUs that want more from CRM can do it in steps. “What we’ve tried to say is you don’t have to go front to back, you can implement the technology in chunks, and the culture in chunks,” said Cannone. Wings is also purchasing MISER’s business intelligence suite, including datawarehousing and data analytics functionality. Mason said the USERS’ system is ODBC compliant, but “it’s kind of like drinking from a fire hose. There’s so much data and so little structure around the data. It can become a process to get that information out of the data base,” said Mason. Cannone said MISER’s business intelligence suite comes with 200 reports already defined. He said instead of handing CUs an open database and telling them to use Microsoft or Crystal reports to start pulling data, MISER gives CUs starting reports that they can customize. “We have a transaction processing database that is optimized for high-speed transaction processing. That’s what it does. Then we have a database for reporting, with a different layout and different strategy,” said Cannone. Mason and some other Wings personnel also attended the MISER users group meeting. Talk about a test run. The CU was there with all the CU users, but it itself was just a prospective user. “We were able to get some really candid feedback there,” said Mason. What else went into the decision? Mason said he was impressed with the proven track record of MISER and he’s a fan of its use of UNISYS Clear Path. “That’s absolutely bulletproof.” He noted that the MISER system was only one of the two systems the CU found that doesn’t have a subshare architecture. “I like the flexibility that will come along when we get away from that whole subshare structure,” said Mason. Conversions are always tough, especially for large CUs. In order to make things easier on employees, Wings decided to also convert its loan origination system. It is moving to an APPRO Systems product. It plans on doing that right away, so employees don’t have to learn a new core processing system and loan origination system at the same time. The DP conversion is still about a year off (scheduled for February of 2006), though the work is already underway. The conversion and all that goes with it will cost the CU a couple of million dollars. Mason said Wings is a frugal CU, so it doesn’t plan on doing a lot of custom programming or purchasing components it won’t use. The CU is trying to figure out how to handle its home banking going forward. Currently it is using USERS’ PCU home banking system, and Mason is extremely happy with it. There is no interface with the MISER system, so the CU is weighing its options. Though it’s a stressful event for all involved, Mason believes system conversions are something CUs should look at every once in a while. “These conversions are a good thing for organizations to do periodically. You’re forced to examine your organization in minute detail, kick over every rock and say. `why do we do it this way’.” [email protected]

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