When I tell people I work at a credit union, most of the time they have kind of a blank look on their face. I recognize the uncertainty because when I started in 1988, I really didn’t know what a credit union was either. I always tell them, credit unions are like banks in that we have all of the financial products and services like checking accounts, car loans and home loans, but we are unlike a bank in that we are owned by our members. Since we don’t have outside investors to earn a profit for, our members save money through lower fees or lower rates on loans, or make money from better rates on deposits. In short, we work for the people who do business with the credit union.
Since we work for you, I want to make you aware of a major change that’s occurring at Metro later this year. In November, Metro will be converting to a brand new core computer system, and you will notice it in several ways. For one thing, the Credit Union will be closed on Saturday, November 1st, and Monday, November 3rd, when we change over. There won’t be any lobby or drive-thru services, but your credit and debit cards will work. Also, home banking users will need to change their passwords. Some will need new user names. Mobile banking users will need a new app for their smartphones. And, everyone’s statements will look different. You will see more information, but some descriptions will be new. While most of the changes will impact the employees, members will see some differences and be affected in different ways.
This change is needed because Metro has outgrown our current software. Over the past five years, consumers have become a lot more conscious of value. Metro consistently ranks among market leaders paying the highest deposit rates, offering the lowest loan rates, and having significantly lower fees. Saving money matters more to people, and as a result, Metro has grown by more than four times the pace of growth in the industry.
Our current system was originally purchased when Reagan was President, and gas was $.89 per gallon. While we’ve had major upgrades over the years, this system won’t accommodate the kind of growth Metro is experiencing, and the new products we want to be able to offer members. The system we’re moving to is one of the strongest, most reliable and most versatile banking software products on the market.
Most of the changes members see will be cosmetic or one-time events like new user names or passwords, but it will be different, and few people like change. However, because we work for our members, you have my assurance that one of our priorities will be to impact you as little as possible, and we’ll make whatever investments are necessary to ensure that we’re trained to help you as well as possible.
In the end, the new software will represent a giant leap forward for Metro. The new system will be faster and more reliable. It will enable us to automate many processes that are currently manual, and that will result in a more efficient and cost effective organization. Online users will have access to more and better information, and we’ll be able to add new products more easily like Remote Deposit Capture and business accounts. There will be numerous other benefits as well, and once installed, the end result of the new system will be more and better service for members.
Look for future communications directly to members who are affected in different ways, like user name changes or password changes. We know you have choices in where you bank, and we appreciate your business. And, we look forward to serving you even better with the new system.