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Core technology Source: Shutterstock

Editor’s note: Direct Federal Credit Union is a one-branch, $750 million credit union located in Needham, Mass. It is undergoing its first core conversion since 1984 and has partnered with CU Times to document its journey until the new core is anticipated go live in 2021. Contributing authors will be members of the project team and each article will tell a story from a different point of view. Read previous articles and continue to follow along at cutimes.com/instantinsights.

A few years ago, I was at an industry event listening to the CEO of a fairly large credit union discuss the ups and downs inherent in the CEO role. He offered that the most stressful experience he had endured over a long and successful career was his credit union’s recent core conversion. He described it as rebuilding your car’s engine, transmission, suspension, brakes, electronics and fuel-injection systems . . . while driving down the highway at 75 miles an hour.  He added one more thing: Not one of the passengers in the car can experience any disruption throughout the trip. I took his words to heart, and successfully whistled by the graveyard of a 36-year-old core until we could whistle no more. The time had come.

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