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Innovation Matters

Creating Competitive Growth in Credit Unions

To remain competitive and grow market share, credit unions must find solutions through reassessing their business innovation models. This report demonstrates an approach to thinking and rethinking the credit union business model building blocks in order to drive future growth.

Executive Summary

Over the last decade, the financial services industry experienced disruption. Consumers face greater financial uncertainty at the same time and competition for their attention from banks, neobanks, fintechs, and other disruptive firms offering new types of financial services. Trends that accelerated during the pandemic continue to advance, and consumers want their financial services provider to keep pace and adapt in ways that solve new challenges. This dynamic environment requires creative approaches to serve consumers, utilize technology, and reconfigure the traditional business model to expand market reach and create social impact. 

This report will help guide credit unions in their efforts to reassess their business innovation models by exploring the following questions:

  • How do you manage the demands of today's environment to take advantage of emerging opportunities?
  • How do you cultivate talent as well as create and maintain the systems and processes to surface new ideas, experiment, and scale innovative solutions?
  • How do you spot and sort through the many opportunities to know which hold the greatest potential for credit unions with limited resources?
It is imperative that credit unions invest in innovation in order to remain relevant to their members' changing needs. How members interact with the credit union has changed drastically in the past few years and will continue to do so. We should be the members' first choice for all things financial because we provide the relevant tools and resources they need and desire.
April Clobes
Michigan State University FCU

Credit Union Implications

Understanding these business and social innovation models gives credit union leaders and executives an approach to analyze and reconfigure existing offerings so that new growth opportunities are revealed. Each credit union has an opportunity to rethink and expand the way it does business. Using these building blocks can lead to innovations for finding new members, providing services that will keep members, or developing new ways to make positive impacts on the communities that you serve. 

This report marks the final piece in our new innovation series focused on providing credit unions with the latest insights on how to leverage innovation to achieve scalable growth. We hope you've enjoyed this journey, if you missed the first two reports from this series we have them all available for download below.

Research Series: Innovation

How can innovation lead to growth?

Filene's latest research series on innovation was developed to help give credit unions a step-by-step guide for implementing a flywheel of innovation strategy to achieve scalable growth. Check out the first two reports from this series!

Filene's Center for Innovation & Incubation is generously funded by:

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