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Cedar Point Federal Credit Union (CPFCU) was organized in August 1945, in Lexington Park, MD. Throughout its history, the credit union has remained focused on providing sound financial advice, and competitively priced products and services to the communities it serves. To help members overcome unexpected financial emergencies and possible errors in reconciling their checking account, CPFCU implemented JMFA OVERDRAFT PRIVILEGE®, based on the program’s reputation as a fully compliant overdraft strategy and JMFA’s industry expertise. At the end of the initial program contract, credit union management was very satisfied with the program’s results and made the decision to manage it on their own going forward.
Over time status quo turns to decline
Over the next several years, the program performed well for the credit union and provided a valuable, compliant service for its members. However, Charles Roach, CPFCU chief executive officer, and his team continued to have strong concerns over the steady decline in revenue.
“From a non-interest income standpoint, the program was very important to us,” he stated. “So, we thought it would be a good idea to bring JMFA back in to take a look at what was going on with our results. We had been very happy with the company’s recommendations when we worked with them originally and were confident they could help us get back on track."
Roach added that he appreciated the fact that JMFA had always been very focused on providing a fully disclosed, compliant overdraft solution. “We looked at programs offered by other providers and were not as comfortable with some of their suggestions,” he said.
“Maintaining compliance and protecting our member relationships are of the utmost importance to us. When considering an update to our program, we were confident that JMFA OVERDRAFT PRIVILEGE® would provide the tools and advice necessary to protect the credit union from any examiner criticism and help us maintain a fully disclosed option that our members can use if they choose. One that not only provides them with a financial safety net, but one that can save them some money if they use it responsibly.”
After initial discussions with credit union leadership, JMFA recommended updates designed to improve overall program management, facilitate more informed member usage and protect income that helped the credit union maintain a high level of service quality. The company also provided helpful compliance advice after the new contract was signed, which reinforced for Roach that he had made the right choice in renewing the relationship with JMFA.
Training simplifies implementation of program changes and boosts employee confidence
To ensure that members have a good understanding of the overdraft program benefits—and how to use it wisely—JMFA provided on-site training and support tools for employees to enable everyone involved in presenting the program to members to do so in a fully compliant way.
“JMFA’s experts did a very thorough job of training the program management and member-facing staff—from a product knowledge and compliance standpoint,” said Roach. “And the materials they provided have helped tremendously in giving everyone more confidence when talking to members about the program. All employees now know if they follow what JMFA trained them to do, they will be in full compliance. We have been very happy with the training.”
As a result of JMFA’s recommendations, the credit union is placing more emphasis on training for all of the products it offers to members.
Improved overall program management
JMFA’s analytical tools have enabled CPFCU to experience additional improvement in its program management. “I like the reports provided by Privilege Manager CRM® and FastTrack software,” commented Roach. “The detailed information is easy to read and provides all the tracking and reporting capabilities necessary to help us measure results, identify potential account holder needs and quickly determine of anything may require a closer look.”
He explained that when the credit union was managing the program on its own, the staff didn’t have the ability to access important key metrics like penetration rates, extended coverage opt-in rates, charge offs and NSF income. “Now, whenever there is an anomaly in program activity, the system identifies the issue so we can see it and address it quickly. This is very helpful in the current regulatory environment,” he said.
Long-term stability on the horizon
With the program improvements in place, Roach has been happy to see income reach and exceed prior levels that he considered successful. “We are very pleased with the ability to protect the revenue we have and potentially see it increase as our membership grows,” he said. “The fact that we are experiencing these results with a program that is guaranteed compliant, that matches our culture and reflects our mission to treat members fairly, is a real plus.”
Roach is comfortable with the way the program is designed and believes it fits in well with the other programs the credit union offers. “There is virtually no risk on our part for offering JMFA OVERDRAFT PRIVILEGE®,” he said. “We have increased revenue with this product, without exploiting our membership.
“Plus, JMFA has done a great job of providing our member service reps with the tools they need to effectively and confidently educate our members about the service; it’s not a hard sell and there is no fee if members don’t use it.”
Roach concluded, “There are no drawbacks to engaging JMFA, none. If an institution is running an overdraft program that isn’t performing the way they would like, JMFA will provide reasonable recommendations that will make a positive difference in the program results. We have been very pleased with our experience since we re-engaged with the company.”