NASHVILLE-Outlining a rapidly evolving payments landscape, with EMV and mobile at the forefront, one expert shared 10 important steps credit unions should consider to maintain, grow and protect their payments business.
Dean Seifert, SVP of product development and innovation at Cincinnati-based Vantiv, shared the 10 strategies during NAFCU's Annual Conference he hopes will help CUs avoid being "Netflixed. Where the whole business model changes under your feet and you are looking back and wondering where all your customers went."
Before sharing what credit unions should do, Seifert described a marketplace in which the two big payments networks are applying pressure on merchants and issuers to fully implement EMV within the next three years-a deadline he emphasized that if the CU is to meet, it needs to begin planning now.
Yet Seifert noted that the rapid advancement of technology is bringing new payment solutions, such as mobile and contactless, making it difficult to predict the future of payments. He said it is possible for mobile payments to skip right over EMV. Seifert also noted the emergence of P2P players, such as Google Wallet, Facebook and PayPal.
Given this environment, Seifert outlined the following 10 steps an issuer should consider:
1. Assign an expert in your organization to stay on top of and manage payments. The space is changing too fast.
2. Get to know your processing partners. They can be a great resource.
3. Don't be afraid to ask for help. That means consultants or trade groups.
4. Know your company's limits. If you don't feel you have the skill sets, ask for help. No one has the time to make mistakes.
5. Upgrade your cards "naturally." Cards are generally issued on a three-year cycle. To implement EMV, the CU must begin planning for implementation now. It is expensive to convert to EMV, do it once.
6. Build a traveler program (for EMV). EMV is the accepted payment type overseas and mag stripe is not. Work first with a segment of your membership that travels, as they tend to be the most affluent.
7. Ask the hard question. What is the business model and how will this drive consumer adoption?
8. Place more than one bet. If there are 100 payment solutions today, in five years there will be three or four. You can't make one bet and hope for the best.
9. Be consistent with your brand. If the payments solution is not consistent with the CU's business philosophy, don't push the envelope.
10. Remember your members. You have to give them solutions that make sense for them.