Return on Experience

“We give big, to get back, to give bigger, to grow ideal members faster than any in Michigan.” Equal parts tongue twister and mission statement; this is Community Choice’s rally cry. We just say “give big” and the rest is implied, because we truly believe that maximizing value for our members, team members and communities is the key to our long term success. It has driven our team to donate thousands of hours and dollars to charities, inspired our board to give back millions in member rewards, and motivated our organization to improve countless products, services and delivery channels. Done well, this formula should lead to ideal member growth…so what’s missing?

Today’s consumers, and our members, want more than the best value in price and the nicest brand to do business with. They want things to be simple, and if you can make them smile along the way, that’s even better. Simplicity and delight are a powerful combination that should lead to increased product adoption and word-of-mouth marketing.  We’ll call it ROE – return on experience. So how will we deliver this one-two service knock-out? That’s where I come in.

I have long been passionate about member service. As the credit union fairy tale oft goes, I started my career serving members. As a call center specialist, I heard the voice of the member firsthand and worked to inform and educate each individual that called me. This spun off into a successful stint in marketing communications where I used my member perspective to inform and educate en masse. Flash forward a decade, after a series of increasingly complex roles, and the call center specialist in me is still alive and well; still hearing the voice of the member and still wanting to create a better experience. It’s like this Member Experience Manager role was designed for me and lucky enough my leaders thought the same thing.

The project? Well, it’s not that simple. We are essentially building a new program that puts the member at the center of service design. Whether we are building a new member center, implementing a new mobile app or just changing a process, the member’s needs will come first. Never fear, this lofty goal still walks and talks like a project with deadlines, milestones and a task list from here to Estonia. As my CEO , Rob Bava, told me in a pep talk, “You’ll find three years worth of work in three weeks, I’d be disappointed if you didn’t” he quickly quelled my anxiety by adding “...but there are no crises, things are going well, you are just here to make them better.” Phew – good thing, because this blog is only long enough to talk about the first three months.

We like our metaphors at Community Choice just as much as the next credit union. So, we have decided to boil this ocean the only way you can – one cup at a time. We already wrote our vision: “Create a branded experience across all channels that is both simple and delightful.” Next up:

  1. Build the toolkit:
    We are going to need data, lots of it, and a strategy to use it. I am quickly researching the implementation of a member effort score, journey mapping software, and various improvements to all of our ‘voice of the member’ programs.
  2. Get the buy-in:
    It’s no surprise that member service is still a big component of the member experience. I am working with my team to create an unforgettable event for our Team Enrichment Day that will unite our team behind this mission to create amazing experiences.
  3. Do the work:
    Defining a new role is equally exciting and intimidating. We know what we are doing and why we are doing it – I get to figure out how. I am quickly getting up to speed on usability testing, journey mapping and the exciting profession of customer experience.

No long-term project is sustainable without quick-wins. In my first month as Member Experience Manager, I have simplified the member process to use our lobby tracking system and completed usability testing to drive improvement to our e-Statement service. My eyes and ears are always open, scanning social channels and team member feedback for the next easy fix. After all, building a long-term program gets more traction when you demonstrate short-term value.

Not too shabby for a girl from the call center. I look forward to the rest of the journey – and to keeping you informed.

Karen Myers
Member Experience Manager
Community Choice Credit Union
877.243.2528 x1157