Credit Union Continuity Webinar: April 1, 2020

Financial Inclusion
April 16, 2020
minutes read

In light of the recent challenges presented by COVID 19, many within the Credit Union sector are facing difficulties in managing Credit Union continuity strategies. In this webinar, panelists discussed the challenges of working from home and providing uninterrupted service for members. Listen to learn more about their advice for the Credit Union community.

The panel: 1) Kathryn Fogg - CEO of Pennine Community Credit Union2) Natalie McQuade - Head of Policy, Risk and Compliance at ABCUL3) Dawn Vear - CEO and Company Secretary of UKCU and Director of First Choice Credit Union4) Matthew Elliott - Co-Founder of Nivo

Key themes from the event

1. On using technology to help with the crisis

Kathryn: Pennine Community Credit Union has put the majority of their transactions on Nivo as staff can access it from their home computers. Only one of their members doesn't have another bank account, so they have made special circumstances for him to receive cash withdrawals. For the rest, Nivo allows its members to have access to the credit union's services, including managing share withdrawals and loan applications.

Matthew: There has been an increase in demand for Nivo in order to enable staff to work from home and easily reach and communicate with members on a secure channel. With physical restrictions in place, many will be looking to exploit the situation and fraud will rise. The use of email should be avoided by credit unions in order to protect members.

2. Changes in lending

Kathryn: Pennine Community Credit Union has experienced a drop in large loan applications and they expect it will be another year before these come back again. Small loans seem to be continuing as normal, especially family loans. One thing they have noticed was that people wanted more top-up loans because of panic-buying food and even freezers - this will likely flatten soon.

Dawn: First Choice Credit Union experiencing an 80% decrease in applications in the past 10 days. In a week, there has been one top-up loan. There has also been a 50% increase in share withdrawals.

3. The long-lasting impact of Covid-19 on the Credit Union Sector


"In the long term, we definitely have to change the way we operate. While in the short term, this will go on longer than people think and credit unions will have to adjust accordingly. We have to have plans in place to move forward with tech and look for a way to fund it for small credit unions."


"These disruptions made us realise how digital we can be if necessary. It will be interesting to see whether members will still come into the office or not. One thing that is certain is that we still want to be a part of the community and maintain retail branches. This definitely changes how credit unions will operate. There will be a lot of changes this year. People may be worried about taking loans out for holidays; they might not travel as much, or will not want to take out large loans. It will take a long time for people to recover."

4. Advice

  1. Seek help and support from fellow Credit Unions to share strategies
  2. Trade Bodies are there for support, even if the Credit Union is not affiliated
  3. ABCUL has created a COVID 19 Credit Union Continuity Guide with updated material on government advice, grants, and tech service providers, which is publically available.
  4. Natalie has been hosting daily webinars with useful support for Credit Unions.

Nivo removes the need for paper and post by providing Credit Unions with flexible, mobile-first messaging, protected with bank standard security. Within it, Credit Unions can deploy a range of FinTech features like biometric identity verification, E-signing, open banking, and automation, giving members convenient access to all the services a Credit Union has to offer, without leaving their homes. Click here to demo Nivo.

Full Audio

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Written by

Stephanie Dymott
Nivo, Marketing