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The Next Step in Consumer Empowerment

TECHNICALLY SPEAKING : BY VINCE PASSIONE

Is it time for your credit union to take the next step when it comes to online lending? One lending expert thinks so. Learn why it may be in your CU’s best interest to ride the lending wave and discover why online lending platforms may be the vehicle to keep you there.

Many of us are old enough to remember when a trip to the gas station meant that attendants pumped our gas, cleaned our windshields and checked our oil, all in the time it took to fill our tanks. Those days, of course, have passed. Today, we fill our own tanks at self-serve pumps, clean our own windows, check our own oil and pay with a debit card that interacts directly with its issuing financial institution before
we’re allowed to pump even a drop. The attendant is only there to answer questions (maybe) and sell newspapers, snack foods and other consumables.

At the time this transformation was taking place, gas stations were the vanguard of a rapidly expanding self-service movement. When the migration first began decades ago, consumers saw it as a way for companies to maximize profits while minimizing labor expense. But over time those views have changed.

Today, busy consumers know it’s faster to fill their own tanks, slide their debit cards through the mag stripe readers and be on their way. It takes only a fraction of the time it would have taken to interact with an attendant.

Lately, we’ve also learned how to check out our own groceries, call in our own medical prescriptions to automated systems that use our touchtone input to fill our orders and book our own airline tickets online, in all cases with little or no human interaction.

Financial service providers, including credit unions, have been part of the self-service evolution for some time. When it comes to online lending, it’s time for many of those credit unions to take the next step.


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