Providence Federal Credit Union Signs with Strategic Link Partner, POPio, to Implement Video Banking Software

The digital landscape is changing every day, which means credit union members are always looking for better, more efficient ways to handle their finances. Strategic Link partner, POPio, is changing the name of the credit union game with video banking.

As the old saying goes, “Time is money,” and many members don’t have a lot of time in their day to physically visit their credit union branch. POPio’s video banking delivers when mobile banking falls short, combining face-to-face video chat with real-time collaboration so members can perform banking transactions, request personal consultations, and get expert advice from wherever they are.

Providence Federal Credit Union recently partnered with POPio. The video chat feature has allowed the credit union to better connect with its wide-reaching membership. Anthem sat down with Brett Wooden, Providence COO, to hear how video banking made an impact for credit union members.

Q. Why video banking? Why POPio?

A. Our credit union just got approved for an expanded field of membership to serve all of Providence Hospital. When developing this strategy to serve all of Providence employees across the country, we came to the realization that building traditional branches would not be the best way to serve a community of employees that work, at times, 36-hour shifts. POPio fit into this by developing a way for our members to meet with us face-to-face from the palms of their hands. [Video banking] allows us to have those conversations that traditionally have to be done in-person at a branch.

Q. What helped you make the decision that Providence was ready to implement this product?

A. Two factors played into this strategy: One was that the hospital is already used to this technology. They rolled out the ability to meet with a doctor remotely via an app, which helps to piggy-back with their messaging. The second was the expanded field of membership. This [new system] allows us to reach members nationwide and provide the same service they’d receive in a traditional branch setting.

Q. How did the implementation process go? Did you run into any hurdles?

A. With all new technology, especially cutting-edge technology, you’ll run into hurdles. We even discussed this in our strategy plan. We had to adjust our procedures, staffing, and technology. For example, in our service center, we first had it on an iMac, then a Surface tablet, and finally an iPad. Why? We wanted to have the ability to control the user experience so that when the member sat down in the chair, [the service] would automatically pop up. We are lucky that we have a team at the credit union that can adapt and cope with the new technology. My recommendation to anyone rolling out POPio is to create procedures, workflows, and practice interactions. POPio has a great test environment that allows you to do that.

Q. How have your members responded to and adapted the tool?

A. It was a slow adoption, but every member interaction we’ve had has been very positive. The credit union did plan a soft rollout to ensure each interaction was a successful one. We’ve done home equity lines of credit; auto loans; new accounts; financial wellness appointments; and even other services, such as reversing overdraft fees.

Q. What improvements has video banking made at Providence?

A. It’s given our members in Alaska and California the ability to meet with us face-to-face. Another part of our strategy was to eliminate shared branching because of the increase in cost. POPio will be rolling out a face-to-face deposit feature this year. This will help with members that like [in-person] interactions with tellers.

Q. Do you have any advice for other credit unions who want to implement video banking?

A. Who you hire for the video banking member services is important. They need to be strong on video but, most importantly, innovate and be empowered to think and do things on the fly. In this environment, members ask for creative solutions, and that individual needs to think that way. An example would be if a member wants to open a checking account and add their spouse, who is a different location. POPio has the ability to add multiple individuals to the face-to-face chat. But having an individual that can walk through that process without expressing technology stress is imperative. We stress that when working with technology solutions, it’s important to not show confusion or stress or blame the technology; this will impact the members overall view of the solution.

To learn more about POPio, visit its Strategic Link partner page or contact Jason Smith, Vice President of Strategic Resources, at 208.288.6794.