Meet The Finalists For The 2023 Innovation Series: Member Experience

This year’s MX solutions provide inventive ways for credit unions to serve members.

Think of it as Shark Tank with a credit union spin, and it’s just been renewed for another season.

The 2023 Innovation Series from and Callahan & Associates is underway. Every year since 2018, this series has offered a select group of suppliers 10 minutes each to impress an audience of credit union decision-makers. It’s simple: Each vendor pitches its offerings and attendees vote on their favorites.

The Innovation Series was a hit from the get-go and continues to grow in popularity. This year’s focus areas include digital, member experience, and lending.

Read on for more from this year’s member experience finalists NCR Terafina, Quinte Financial Technologies Inc., SundaySky, Vertice AI. 



NCR Terafina

Describe your innovation.

Karthik Vaidyanthan, Chief Technology Officer, NCR Terafina

Karthik Vaidyanthan: NCR Terafina’s omnichannel sales platform unifies the onboarding and sales experience for business and retail credit union members – across channels (digital, branch, and call center) and across a multisuite of products that include consumer deposits and lending, real estate, small business deposits and lending, commercial deposits, crypto, and merchant services.

What opportunity or challenge does it address?

KV: Most credit unions recognize the need to create an easy, secure, and reliable account opening experience. And most companies today have created flashy software that attempts to help with merely this distinct issue. At NCR Terafina, we focus on not just addressing account openings but creating a guided member experience that goes beyond onboarding and leveling up the sales process to think about how you build 30-60-90+ day lifecycle relationships with your members. Our solution is simple, secure and seamless and helps credit unions turn their online and mobile engines into strong conversion tools. We drive growth by strategically leveraging and positioning your product offerings while building a collaborative and seamless experience across all your channels – online, branches, and call centers.
While others choose to focus on emphasizing account openings, we believe in taking a much more proactive and targeted approach. We enable the credit unions to utilize the platform to deliver a comprehensive set of financial products and services via a unified storefront. The sales platform enables the institution to continuously evolve their offerings and compliance posture through deep insights and comprehensive champion challenger models.

How does it increase member value?

KV:  This innovation allows members to open any type of account with their credit union in a frictionless way. Members can start onboarding digitally and seamlessly pick up where they left off via call center or in branch if desired without having to start the process over. This enables members to start or expand their relationship with a credit union more quickly than if the credit union did not have an innovative omnichannel, omniproduct onboarding solution in place. A number of Terafina’s client partners continue to leverage the platform in unique and innovative ways. For example, Patelco Credit Union based in Pleasanton, CA has successfully utilized the Terafina platform themselves to build out a seamless extension to their digital onboarding process called Check My Rate. The innovative offering extends the Terafina platform enabling members to pre-qualify into a Patelco loan product without impacting their credit score. Once selected, the member experience seamlessly transitions into the full application process with data pre-filled. Members benefit from the ability to research products that best suit their financial needs and additionally to easily refer friends and family to their trusted credit union.

What differentiates this innovation from competitors?

KV:  NCR Terafina has been innovating in the digital and omnichannel account opening space for over 8 years and we continue to leap ahead of the competition. Our core and unique innovation from the start has been to underpin a digital account solution with a sales platform. This combination enables credit unions to bring branches and call centers into the digital account opening process whereby digital leads get converted through other channels or their members can initiate applications in one channel and seamlessly continue or complete them in another channel. Further, cross-sell is inbuilt into our core member experience such that a credit union’s members can apply for multiple products in a single buying experience without any form of data re-entry. To support that multi-product application experience, we have uniquely built over 80+ connectors to core banking systems, lending origination systems, KYC solutions, CRM systems, document management systems, account funding, data aggregation, data pre-fill providers and many more. Terafina provides comprehensive tools for financial needs analysis and sales coaching to ensure the right products are delivered to the customers across channels. The platform enables the institution to perform A/B tests over a wide variety of elements like UI flows, colors and themes and even KYC policies, allowing them to continuously improve their products and services.



Quinte Financial Technologies Inc.

Describe your innovation.

Ankit Maharaj Singh, Vice President, Quinte Financial Technologies Inc.

Ankit Maharaj Singh: Quinte Financial Technologies (Quinte) provides credit unions with cloud-based technologies and process automation to enable cloud-hosted frameworks that increase process efficiency. Credit unions can seamlessly embrace digital transformation with Quinte’s augmented intelligence of technology and expert services. This results in a process that can manage dynamic workflows to improve member security, interactions, and serviceability. Credit unions continue to adopt these solutions for operational excellence, allowing them to streamline their processes, achieve faster resolutions, reduce costs, and increase member value. Quinte’s Cloud solutions provide credit unions with access to a pool of data scientists who create automation models that help accelerate business growth.

What opportunity or challenge does it address?

AMS: Credit unions continue to experience increased demands from members, with a need to constantly evolve and provide timely resolutions. Quinte helps address operational challenges such as the lack of support to members during non-banking hours and holidays and the increased costs of operations. Their problems are amplified by the changing digital and regulatory landscape. Quinte has been supporting credit unions with a host of solutions which include 24/7 contact center support with live chat features and email automation to handle members’ queries efficiently while significantly shortening the resolution time. Process automation improves the way a credit union functions on nearly every level enabling superior member experiences at lower costs.

How does it increase member value?

AMS: With Quinte, credit unions are shaping the entire banking experience for their members by providing them with the ultimate solution to operational excellence. Today’s digitally savvy members demand digital transformation, and we leverage technology to automate processes, modernize existing systems and offer expert services for a seamless digital member experience. This, in turn, also helps credit unions rapidly drive growth and significantly improve in all metrics across processes to achieve a higher ROI.

What differentiates this innovation from competitors?

AMS: Quinte’s collaborative intelligence of cloud-based technology, process automation and expert services increases operational efficiency and reduces costs while maintaining unmatched standards of service and quality.




Describe your innovation.

Jim Dicso, Chief Executive Officer, SundaySky

Jim Dicso: SundaySky helps credit unions drive better member engagement through the combined power of video and personalization. Our easy- to-use platform provides the video expertise needed to quickly and efficiently create, personalize, and deliver videos at an unmatched scale across any member moment, channel, and audience. Engaged members deposit more, expand into other product lines, are less costly to service, and are more likely to tell a friend.

What opportunity or challenge does it address?

JD: Credit unions find challenges keeping members engaged when they have less time, more options, and higher-than-ever expectations. Many credit unions with limited resources and budgets struggle to maintain a steady stream of new, relevant content that doesn’t fall flat. As members are increasingly uninspired and disengaged, two things remain true — it’s a video first world, and the brands prioritizing video are winning.

There is a real opportunity to enhance the member experience with video, but the reality is that video can be hard to create, optimize, and scale. Compelling video content requires expertise, big budgets, resources, and time. And once a video is complete, the content becomes outdated with just one change to a promotion, offer, or branding. Personalizing a video to the viewer is nearly impossible.

The SundaySky Video Platform helps credit unions save time and cost on video creation, drive better relevance for the viewer through personalization, and scale video by creating more for different audiences and moments in the member journey. The opportunity is not only for members; credit unions also see tremendous value in using the platform for internal employee communications.

How does it increase member value?

JD: Applying for a loan or trying to understand account benefits can be confusing. Personalized videos help achieve a better understanding of critical messages by providing information and next steps that are most relevant to a member. SundaySky video viewers often cite a better understanding of a credit union’s offerings or services after watching a video, are less likely to contact a call center, and are more likely to adopt digital tools.

What differentiates this innovation from competitors?

JD: The SundaySky Platform is designed so any user, regardless of their experience, can create, personalize, and distribute video. To deliver that promise, the platform stands out in three key ways: the depth of personalization in a video powered by real-time rendering, modular scene architecture that enables content velocity and optimization at scale, and embedded expertise in the templates and pre-built stories within the platform.



Vertice AI

Describe your innovation.

Mitch Rutledge, CEO & Co-Founder, Vertice AI

Mitch Rutledge: Our solution is a cloud-based, interactive application that empowers credit unions to know, grow, and measure their existing memberships in a way that has not been done at scale or using this level of advanced analytics before. Vertice leverages a series of predictive algorithms to quantify each member’s economic participation with the credit union and then provides recommendations to credit union leaders and marketing teams on where members can grow.

Vertice does the hard work of normalizing member data, quantifying member participation, calculating propensity to grow or churn, and measuring marketing effectiveness. Vertice provides credit unions with an easy-to-use web interface to interact with the results and investigate the member participation. This means credit unions have the power of advanced analytics without the need to hire teams of data scientists. Vertice is putting the power of AI for member growth in the hands of credit union marketing and member growth teams.

What opportunity or challenge does it address?

MR: Vertice AI was founded to close the knowledge and skill gap credit unions face as large banks and fintechs (i.e., Venmo, PayPal, Robinhood, etc.) promise more nuanced offerings to the same segments of the population. The large banks have the people and financial resources to focus on targeting their customers using analytics and AI, but credit unions have been laggards in adopting this type of strategy and the technologies due to lack of resources.

Credit unions must embrace advanced analytics and AI to serve the demands of their members who expect an Amazon, Netflix, or Spotify-like experience. Knowing each member’s financial journey and predicting the next step enables credit unions to serve their members better and remain their trusted financial partner. Vertice AI empowers credit unions to know, grow, and measure each member’s economic participation with actionable AI. Leveraging modern, cloud-based advanced analytics and the member data that credit unions already have, we provide actionable, member-focused growth recommendations for each member.

How does it increase member value?

MR: We quantify the value of our solutions in three ways.

First, we provide a quantitative understanding of the economic participation of each member of a credit union. Knowing their unique membership is the first step to growing it. This is much more than just the average number of products per member.

Second, we provide recommendations on the best products and services journeys for each member as well as churn risks. These recommendations can be used to grow products and services in more efficient and effective ways than the traditional methods of segmentation or the “send an offer to everyone” strategy. A more targeted and tailored approach to member engagement will have a higher participation rate and create a more trusted relationship with members. Peoples’ expectations for product and services recommendations are much higher in the age of Netflix and Amazon, and Vertice can help credit unions meet those expectations in their financial lives. Vertice provides not only recommendations for products and services for each member but also the potential best tactic and offer for each member.

Third, Vertice measures the impact of credit unions’ marketing and member engagement. Are they growing the economic participation of their members? Are certain products and services growing or shrinking? Are the marketing programs and offers converting.

What differentiates this innovation from competitors?

MR: In the age of Netflix, Amazon, and Spotify, members’ expectations have changed. They expect and demand hyper-personalization in every interaction. Credit unions must embrace the same techniques and technologies of these tech titans. Vertice AI provides a solution that makes these advanced, modern personalization techniques and technologies approachable and actionable and does not require a team of advanced PhDs to make it work.

No other provider in the industry has created a credit union-specific solution to predict lifetime member economic participation journeys using modern advanced analytics, while also making it easily actionable for marketing and growth teams. We believe our offering can boost the credit union movement in a new way to truly serve each member.

This article is sponsored by a recognized solutions provider in the credit union industry. Callahan & Associates does not endorse vendors or the solutions they offer, and the views and opinions offered here might not reflect those of Callahan. If you are interested in contributing an article on, please contact the Callahan team at or 1-800-446-7453.
February 13, 2023

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