Technology changes at an exponential, and rapid, speed that causes many decision makers to overlook its possibilities.
Yet mobile and online advances are becoming the “new normal,” so the concern now is that a credit union which lets these banking options pass may be rendered as obsolete quicker than one would think.
Credit unions must first be aware, however, that mobile options extend beyond mobile banking on members’ iPhones.
The term “mobile” is broader and has different meaning to everyone. It’s more widespread than just the use of cellular phones; one common misperception is that mobile and online means strictly a smartphone. To add, it has implications far more reaching than that of native mobile banking applications.
The truth is that laptop PCs and the iPad as well as other tablet devices provide credit unions additional and viable channels through which they can serve their members with a variety of services.
And while expanding service delivery options has its obvious implied benefits, carefully choosing your mobile alternatives can open up an entire new opportunity in maintaining and acquiring members with convenience and efficiency.
Mobile convenience and immediacy is expected now more than ever before, and that trend is continuing to gain momentum in a true sense of the term snowball effect.
Aite Group LLC reported in April that 59 of consumers already use online and mobile banking channels. While this study was only limited to mobile banking use, it certainly justifies an interest and the thought that we will see an expanded use of mobile forthcoming.
What is concerning is that financial institutions in general are not even considering how to use remote technology to complete lending and other documents via mobile or online channels.
Home banking and shared branching are already well accepted. There is real value in extending document fulfillment through Web-based applications available on different mobile devices. Tablet devices are not just toys; they have definite and real business benefits – tangible and intangible – when incorporated into credit unions’ operations and member relation strategies.
Take for instance the flexibility and mobility enabled by tablet devices for onsite account enrollment – taking the process directly to members. The same is true for the ability to view, sign and electronically archive loan documents off site or between multiple parties at different locations.
Nielsen recently reported that 77% of tablet owners use the device for actions in which they would have previously used a laptop or desktop, and 31% responded that its ease of transport was the primary reason. The same convenience can be translated to financial transactions.
Mobile devices have an in-branch advantage too. Have you ever witnessed a loan officer trying to turn around his or her desktop to have the member view a document in its entirety or being tied to a desk because that is where the signature pad is housed, accompanied by a cumbersome cable?
With mobile devices in the branch, credit union staff can provide members an untethered, more personable experience to complete membership and lending documents virtually anywhere within a branch.
Regardless of how they are used, document presentment and fulfillment on mobile devices supports significant cost savings by eliminating paper processes and the organizational efficiencies they deliver.
Approximately 20 million iPads have been sold to date, not to mention the solid sales of other tablet devices that have followed. Consumers have become comfortable with the technology and are willing to incorporate it into their lives wherever possible.
As remote digital signature capture and document delivery via the Web become more mainstream, there are obvious synergies here upon which financial institutions must capitalize.
Evaluate the possibilities and seize the moment to compete in your very competitive financial arena!
Chuck Klein is CEO of Integrated Media Management in Linden, N.J.