Credit Unions And Employee Impact

Three ways credit unions are connecting institutional mission and employee engagement.

As credit unions compete in the ever-growing field of financial services, they mustn’t lose sight of what sets them apart, and it’s not rates, fees, or mobile banking. Credit unions are cooperatives that, by definition, represent the interests of members united to serve a common purpose. In the case of credit unions, this purpose involves improving the lives of members, communities, and employees. Purpose is what sets credit unions apart.

Research from Harvard Business school and PR and marketing firm Edelman shows purpose-driven organizations attract employees as well as consumers. Credit unions across the country are leading with purpose to positively impact the lives of their members, communities, and employees here are three stories to serve as inspiration for all.

This is one of three spotlights on credit union impact. Read more about member impact and community impact.

The Whole Package

United Federal Credit Union ($3.8B, St. Joseph, MI) has created a new position director of total rewards to attract and retain the talent the cooperative needs to serve its 178,000 members across a network of 37 branches in six states.

The first person to hold that position is Kellie Dolezan. Dolezan joined the Michigan-based credit union in March 2018 as compensation and benefits manager; as of January, she’s now responsible for providing strategic and operational leadership to an HR team that is adding a holistic approach to its traditional roles.

Read more in What’s In A Name: Director Of Total Rewards.

Up To The Task

Teachers Credit Union ($4.3B, South Bend, IN) has worked to raise awareness around diversity and create an inclusive work environment for more than a decade.

In 2008, the Hoosier State cooperative created a Diversity Council that provided diversity training and sponsored community events. It also created programs and blueprints the credit union follows to this day, says assistant vice president of district retail Catrina Tate, who was one of the first members of the council and served as a chair.

After fulfilling its mission, the council dissolved itself in 2016, leaving the credit union with no formal group dedicated to DEI. Calls for racial justice in early 2020, however, spurred Teachers to create a new group.

Now, a 12-person group at Teachers Credit Union focuses on action and deliverables in its efforts to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion at the Indiana cooperative. Early data suggests the task force is moving the needle on several balance sheet metrics, including wallet share.

Read more in A Force Of Change For Diversity, Equity, And Inclusion.

Eye On Employee Engagement

Businesses today are struggling to attract and retain top talent. Diversity, equity, and inclusion has never been more important, and programs addressing DEI are becoming more prevalent. In this environment, voluntary, employee-led resource groups are gaining in popularity.

Although typically formed to support groups of employees with shared characteristics or life experiences, employee resource groups also benefit the organizations that encourage their creation. Here, three credit unions BCU ($5.0B, Vernon Hills, IL), Suncoast Credit Union ($14.3B, Tampa, FL), and Verity Credit Union ($763.1M, Seattle, WA) share takeaways, tips, and lessons learned from launching and supporting employee resource groups (ERGs). The groups featured here encompass multi-year programs as well as brand-new initiatives, and the credit unions insights are valuable.

Read more in Insider Tips For Effective Employee Resource Groups.

Want more stories of credit union impact? has them! Click here to see a selection of stories that highlight strategies, initiatives, products, and services of credit unions making a positive impact for the members and communities they serve.

January 10, 2022

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