Enterprise risk management (ERM) is a hot topic among credit unions today, as all institutions strive to improve efficiency and financial performance. By establishing an effective ERM program, a credit union can perform a comprehensive risk assessment that is aligned with its strategic plan, while also developing a standard assessment process.
Ensuring that credit union boards understand their role is also important in ERM programs, and requires board oversight, awareness, or action.
Recognizing the need for enhanced ERM programs, the Minnesota Credit Union Network (MnCUN) recently formed a strategic alliance with Sequoia Vantage. Using a principles-based framework to assess and strengthen board governance and enterprise risk management capabilities, Sequoia Vantage can help credit unions quickly achieve their goals.
"The biggest hurdle with ERM is that so many credit unions don't know where to begin,” said John Ferstl, Vice President – Network Service Corporation. "Sequoia Vantage can take the mystery out of the process and help you establish or improve your credit union's enterprise risk management, while also ensuring that the board of directors can effectively handle all of its related responsibilities.”
David Seibert, President and Principal Consultant at Sequoia Vantage, has developed the ERM program at Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union for more than three years. Seibert has extensive experience in risk and governance, and through Sequoia Vantage, is partnering with credit unions to help them become successful and self-sufficient in these areas.
Sequoia Vantage has several core offerings, facilitated on a secure cloud-based platform. These include:
- Free, principles-based diagnostics for credit unions
- Benchmark studies
- Guided assessments
- Facilitated analysis and prioritization studies
- Implementation assistance
- Equipping tools and templates
"We at Sequoia Vantage believe that the present-day world is facing systemic challenges in the relationship among management, boards, monitoring systems and stakeholders,” Seibert said. "There is a better way to govern and manage, and we are committed to addressing this issue through our comprehensive service offerings specifically designed for credit unions.”
For additional information, visit Sequoia Vantage or contact MnCUN Vice President – Network Service Corporation John Ferstl by email or call (651) 288-5505.
Shared Branching helps credit unions provide reliability in severe weather
With the recent tornadoes in Oklahoma and other severe weather cropping up around the country, credit unions nationwide understand the need to be prepared. In Minnesota, the National Weather Service begins gearing up for severe weather season in April. But floods, fires, power outages, tornadoes and blizzards can happen year round.
With more than 7,000 locations in all 50 states, CO-OP Shared Branching provides reliable access for your members when the unexpected occurs. Credit unions can harness the power of this robust infrastructure to ensure member service and business continuity.
The CO-OP Shared Branching network continues to grow in size and convenience. Consider these factors:
- Nationwide, nearly 1,000 new Shared Branching outlets were added in the past two years
- There are 31 Shared Branching locations in Minnesota through the offerings of 20 credit unions
- CO-OP Shared Branching exists in all 50 states (plus four countries and two U.S. territories)
- Bank of America is only in 40 states, and Wells Fargo is in 35
Credit unions can participate in Shared Branching in two ways:
- by allowing your members to use other shared branches
- by opening up your credit union to serve members from other shared branching credit unions
While disasters are unpredictable, advanced planning and participation in Shared Branching can provide the business continuity your credit union needs to best serve its members. Additional information on Shared Branching can be found on the MnCUN website or through CO-OP Shared Branching. With questions, please contact John Ferstl by email or at (651) 288-5505.