Articles and Press Releases
eDOC Innovations Launches Service Mobile App
The eDOC Mobile app offers information and resources to clients and credit unions who are interested in learning more about eDOC Innovation’s core image processing solutions. Within the app, users can view recent press releases, software releases, videos, product alerts, and more!
Bret Weekes, President & CEO of eDOC Innovations comments, “The purpose of the mobile app is to bring information and resources to our clients in real time. Offering a mobile platform to stay up-to-date with our company is just another facet of joining the credit union industry’s mobile revolution.”
CU*Answers Announces New Management Dashboard Options
West Michigan-based data processor, CU*Answers, recently announced its plans to invigorate programs specifically designed for the credit union’s management staff. Management Dashboard Tools on the core platform CU*BASE® include a new series of dashboard reports which credit union management teams will be able to use for forecasting and data analytics. A CU*Answers spokesperson stated, “The dashboard tools are meant to extract data from the core in a manner that doesn’t require custom reporting and can be run on-demand.”
Some of the new dashboard tools that CU*Answers will be adding include the EFT portfolio dashboard, loan risk score analysis, credit report data mining dashboard, and many more.
“With over 50 leadership dashboards to allow management teams to create board ready reports which include full color graphs and charts from the click of a mouse over all areas of the credit union business, we are proud that credit unions are asking for more,” said Scott Page, EVP of CU*Answers. “Our goal is to provide fingertip tools that management can utilize, providing data that they can not only see, but act upon to make meaningful business decisions. Between our leadership dashboards, our Learn from a Peer functionality and our Know Your Members tools, our credit unions are in a position to maximize their ROI.” CU*Answers went on to say it is delighted to offer these exciting new software enhancements at no additional cost to its clients.
CU*Answers Consolidates Online Requests Screens
CU*Answers, the 100% credit union-owned, cooperative CUSO headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan, announced that in the 13.0 release of its CU*BASE® core data processing software, it has consolidated four previous online member request screens into a single, searchable screen. Previously, staff would have to work through online banking contact requests, email changes, personal information changes, requested security changes and membership requests separately.
“As an example of our credit union owners driving development of our technology platform, we have consolidated everything to one screen to help staff not to miss a request,” said Scott Page, EVP of CU*Answers. “Our new Online Banking Requests screen includes sort and search capabilities to give credit unions the ability to view everything or divide work between multiple employees and see only specific request types. With over 85% of system enhancements coming from direct requests from our clients we are pleased to have the opportunity to have carried forward their vision for the already robust toolset,” says Page. More information about the 13.0 CU*BASE software upgrade can be found by visiting the CU*Answers website or by phoning a talented member of the CU*Answers Client Services team.
CU*Answers Goes 20 Months with 100% Scheduled Uptime
CU*Answers, the 100% credit union-owned CUSO, is extremely proud to announce it has gone over twenty months with 100% scheduled uptime for its iSeries server as well as server-based systems such as It’s Me 247 online banking and CU*Talk audio banking.
Does 24 by 7 really mean 24 hours every day and 7 days a week every week? It might, depending on who you ask, but the one thing on which everyone agrees is that computers cannot run without occasional maintenance, upgrades, or even replacement. So what does 24×7 mean to CU*Answers? In their case, it means CU*Answers puts into place many different controls to allow its system to be running as many hours of the day, week by week, as they possibly can, while still allowing time for routine maintenance and necessary upgrades to hardware, communications and software systems.
CU*Answers has made system availability an extremely high priority for its credit unions, and has implemented a multi-site High Availability solution to maintain its high standard for Disaster Recovery.
It’s Me 247 Online Banking Adds PFM Options
CU*Answers, the West Michigan-based core data processor, recently announced that it has teamed up with MoneyDesktop to offer members Personal Financial Management (PFM)Tools directly within It’s Me 247. Using these tools, members can aggregate and track their finances across all of their financial institutions to better manage their money.
“CU*Answers provides credit unions the opportunity to remain relevant in the social environment,” says Julie Gessner, Sales Administrator of CU*Answers. “The relationship with MoneyDesktop provides a solution for our credit unions to maintain member loyalty and create interest and demand for cooperative services at price points they can afford.” CU*Answers adds the MoneyDesktop personal financial management relationship to its already robust offerings that promote the exceptional experiences including Mobile Web, Mobile App, Mobile Text, and CU*Talk. To find out more visit the MoneyDesktop Brochure found on the CU*Answers website or by contacting Keegan Daniel at 800-327-347 ext. 209.
CU*Answers Prepared for NCUA June Call Report Changes
In October 2012 when the NCUA announced the loan delinquency reporting change from months to days, CU*Answers, the 100% credit union-owned cooperative CUSO, started planning and preparing for the necessary updates to our software tool CU*BASE®. Implemented with the April 2013 software release, our system now calculates the actual number of days delinquent and reports the loans in the appropriate 30-59 days, 60-179 days, 180-359 days, or >=360 days categories.
In addition to the loan delinquency reporting change for the June Call Report, CU*Answers is also prepared for these NCUA updates:
Account Codes are added for reporting delinquency and charge offs for new and used vehicle loans.
Account codes are added for unfunded commitments, credit impaired loans and investments.
CU*Answers has a dedicated resource on staff who monitors the NCUA changes, updates the software, procedures and documentation accordingly. Jim Vilker, Manager of the Audit Link Department states “Since the CU*BASE software tool was introduced four years ago, we have consistently made Call Report changes in a timely manner and met NCUA deadlines”.
CU*Northwest and CU*South Partner to Innovate Client Service Delivery
CU*NorthWest and CU*South announced a unique new partnership model focused on collaboration in the delivery of Client Services to over 50 credit unions using the CU*BASE® core software platform.
“This is an exciting adventure for our firms,” said Greg Smith, President and CEO of CU*NorthWest. “We both started out building a new kind of business and today we are coming together to do it smarter, faster and better. This is the first step in a collaboration that we hope yields innovation and improvement to the sales, delivery and support of CU*BASE for our customers.”
“We’re practicing what we preach to our credit unions,” added Leo Vaulin, President and CEO of CU*South. “Our CU*BASE software makes it easy for credit unions to work together to leverage core competencies. One CU may have a great marketing expert; another may be focused on compliance. The peer-to-peer collaboration tools native to our shared CU*BASE core make it easy for CU’s to form operating agreements to barter these resources.”
“Now, we’re applying the same collaborative model to our own business,” continued Mr. Vaulin. “The CU*BASE solution really appeals to credit unions looking to upgrade their core to a full-featured, fully-integrated solution at a very attractive price. We looked at our conversion calendar and our new employee onboarding solution, and asked ourselves – ‘how can we be smarter about this?’ – and turned to our CUSO partners.”
“CU*NorthWest had developed an industry-leading client interaction methodology,” said Mr. Smith. “We were happy to share our training, procedures, best practices – and the experience of our employees – with our partners in the South.”
“When you start a partnership like this, there’s a natural tendency to say, ‘my way is better’ – and then you waste a lot of dickering over details,” added Mr. Vaulin. “When we first met, I told my partners – ‘I want you in the driver’s seat. I want to learn from you. ’ “
The partners agreed on a shared client delivery model, including a common service delivery and knowledge base system bundled with the CU*BASE core software. The CUSO partners use AnswerBook to manage client support requests. Once the questions are answered, many are promoted to a knowledge base that’s shared by all CU*BASE credit unions and support staff across the entire cuasterisk.com CUSO network.
“We’re delighted with the results so far,” noted Mr. Vaulin. “More important, we’re seeing the results in the quality and speed of our responses to our credit union clients.”
“Now, we’re looking to extend this model to a collaborative core conversion project that both firms are studying,” concluded Mr. Smith.
CU*NorthWest promotes Trout
CU*NorthWest, a credit union-owned CUSO, has promoted Kylie Trout to Manager of Service and Delivery.
Trout has been a client service representative at the data processing company for three years and takes on the new role as the company grows and takes on new projects. She will manage a pool of resources both local and remote to which customer service and delivery assignments will be made.
Trout is from Post Falls, Idaho.
CU*NorthWest Announced New Grand Opening Kit
CU*NorthWest, a cooperative data processing CUSO, announced it has shipped a new Grand Opening Kit to all CU*NorthWest data processing clients at no cost. The kits provide inexpensive, high quality materials to drive the marketing of features within the CU*BASE® core processing platform and It’s Me 247 online banking.
The new Grand Opening Kit will focus on Debit Card Round Up programs and how to easily promote this service to members. CU*NorthWest has released three Grand Opening Kits since July 2012 to promote various services to credit union membership.
The free Grand Opening Kit include a banner, posters, balloons, brochures, buck slips, stickers, window clings, member give away items and more. The kits have been produced to allow credit unions to add marketing campaigns and not have to go through the hassle or cost of product design and development.
CU*NorthWest to Hold 2013 Leadership Conference
CU*NorthWest, a core data processing CUSO, is expecting 75% turnout at its upcoming annual Leadership Conference scheduled for June 25th-27th at the Northern Quest Resort in Spokane, Washington.
CEO’s and executive team members from credit unions who process with CU*NorthWest are invited to the annual event which showcases software upgrades from the past year and lays the foundation for next year’s development and national network initiatives of cuasterisk.com. Greg Smith, CEO and President of CU*NorthWest, as well as Randy Karnes, CEO and President of CU*Answers, will talk about the strategic direction both companies are taking to help credit unions meet the needs of their members.
Cuasterisk.com network partners will also be in attendance to educate CU*BASE® GOLD users on the latest news and updates from each respective CUSO. In addition, the annual Stockholder’s Meeting will take place with two board seats to be voted upon.
CU*Answers Completes Automation Project for Horizon Federal Credit Union
CU*Answers, the West Michigan-based core data processor, announced that it has completed implementation of CU*BASE® GOLD Automated Operations Toolkit for Horizon Federal Credit Union (Farmington, UT).
Horizon Federal Credit Union is the third self-processing partner to adopt the automation toolkit since its recent release in late 2012.
“The Automated Operations Toolkit is the first product offering from the CU*Answers Production Center”, said Jeff Miller, the Production Center Business Development Manager. “We anticipate additional offerings in the near future aimed to increasing business effectiveness.”
Harris County FCU Automates Nightly Processing
Harris County Federal Credit Union, located in Houston, Texas, which services over 14,000 members, recently announced that they have streamlined their operations through the automation of their nightly processing using the CU*BASE® GOLD Automated Operations Toolkit.
Harris County Federal Credit Union has additionally been able to leverage this powerful new suite of tools to monitor system resources and to initiate the use of nightly stand-in processing, a great advantage for their membership.
CU*Answers Heightens Focus on Strategic Development for Production Center
CU*Answers, a CUSO headquartered in West Michigan, has promoted Jeff Miller, former Manager of Operations, to lead the CU*Answers Production Center as the new Manager of Production Center Business Development. Mr. Miller served as the Operations Manager for seven years and came to CU*Answers in 2000 with experience in the Credit Union and Financial Services industries.
“CU*Answers has set a high bar for operational excellence,” says Miller. “I am looking forward to advancing the products and services available to our in-house processors and group providers and providing strategic direction for and develop of our Production Center business.”
CU*Answers Promotes New Operations Manager
CU*Answers, a CUSO headquartered out of West Michigan, has promoted Todd Underhill from Assistant Manager of Operations to the Manager of Operations. Mr. Underhill has been with CU*Answers since 1999 where he began as an operating technician. Since that time he has worked in Networking and as a member of the Programming Team before accepting the Assistant Manager position in 2006. He looks forward to improving process efficiencies while assisting in the development of products and services being offered to our business partners.
CU*Answers Performs Disaster Recovery Test
On May 7, 2013, CU*Answers’ recovery teams operating from multiple locations convened to restore systems and networks hosting CU*BASE/GOLD® core processing during a recovery exercise hosted at an IBM BCRS (Business Continuity and Resiliency Services) facility.
At CU*Answers, the continuity and recovery strategies for maintaining a high level of system and application uptime require multiple recovery paths. In addition to real-time data replication between the state-of-the-art primary (production) and secondary (high-availability) datacenters, the CUSO maintains a fully equipped and monitored hot-site recovery location at an IBM BCRS facility. In the rare event both the primary and secondary datacenters were not available, activation of the hot-site recovery plan would engage recovery teams to perform the procedures necessary to restore systems and bring operations back online. To measure the level of preparedness for such events, CU*Answers performs similar off-site disaster tests on an annual basis.
Additional information about the CU*Answers Business Continuity Program including results and analysis reports from previous recovery tests and exercises is available on the corporate web site at http://www.cuanswers.com/bcp.