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Credit union operations are continually evolving. Twenty years ago we helped members balance their checkbook registers as they sat across the desk from us; today we provide them with mobile apps that deliver real-time information and account warnings to their mobile devices. We are at a critical and important juncture as credit unions determine how they will best serve their members in the future.

In the United States, there are two groups of people who will shape our future economy, and they have very different needs. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are 92 million millennials about to enter their prime spending years and 77 million baby boomers who are moving into retirement. As financial institutions designed to serve our members’ needs through the “people helping people” philosophy, how can credit union operations bridge the gap between these diverse member groups?

Millennials grew up in a time of advanced technology, instant information and rapid change. They expect cutting edge technological services that provide convenience, flexibility and speed. With 62% of millennials connecting to the internet when away from home or work, they are adept at communicating using social media sources. Brick and mortar branch experiences are evolving to provide virtual tellers to meet this generation’s banking needs; however, virtual branch experiences are a far cry from the Internet-only connection these younger members enjoy.

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