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Improving Operational Efficiency via the ITM-ATM Channel

It has been said again and again that our job economy remains strong. Companies are reportedly hiring new employees, whether it is to fill a vacancy or expand on operations. However, this is not what I am experiencing as I go about my professional and personal life.

I repeatedly run into “longer than normal” call wait times when dealing with a customer service issue over the phone. One such situation with a cable company that promised to “wow” me, caused me to spend over 45 minutes on hold on three separate occasions just to speak to a representative. Online help chats are even taking far too long to switch from the AI bot over to a human interaction. And I still see many lobbies and restaurants that have closed their in-store service indefinitely.

It is clear to me that numbers are askew when it comes to “official” claims regarding employment figures but what are we as credit unions to do? Where is the slew of quality, dependable people wanting to earn a decent living. How do we adjust our operating procedures to accommodate a smaller staff at our branches and administrative offices?

Human Resources will continue to search for reliable new employees to hire but this takes time. Even the right hire from HR doesn’t always translate into a solid, long-term employee. So, how do we operate short-staffed?

What if we turn our attention to the operational tasks we burden our staff with that can be better placed in the hands of a trusted partner? Have you considered outsourcing your ATMs (or ITMs)? 99% of the industry has outsourced the operation of its core operating system and credit and debit card services. ATMs should be next on your list to outsource for several reasons.

Your staff time is critical. Enabling your staff to focus on your members is of the utmost importance. Anything operational that pulls your staff away from this focus should be put on the list for outsourcing consideration.

ATMs are a very cost-effective means for members to access their cash & make deposits. However, they can be a drain on your staff’s schedule. Some credit unions have indicated they spend 40+ hours of staff time on just 10-20 ATMs. What would the impact be for your sales and retention efforts if you could redirect 40 hours of existing, quality staff time back to a member focus?

Another reason to consider ATM outsourcing is the cost associated with hiring employees to manage your ATMs. We like to call it a soft cost, but a mid-level FTE salary and benefits package has a direct impact on the bottom line. Even a reasonable compensation package of $55,000 adds over $4,500 to your monthly ATM bill.

You can eliminate the time spent as well as the costs associated when you outsource your ATM & ITM fleet. Put experts in charge of your program now so you can sell your existing ATM assets to your outsourcing partner and eliminate the hassle right away.

Joe Woods, CUDE, SVP, Marketing & Partnerships for Dolphin Debit Access

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