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  • Ian McCain

Looking Beyond the Core: Rethinking the Relationship With Your Banking Core

Updated: Jun 28


binoculars looking out at the horizon in the distance

We are at this strange inflection point in traditional business operations, where new tools and technology have the potential to fundamentally transform how we operate. In the financial services space, specifically for banks and credit unions, thriving and remaining vital to your members and customers requires revisiting some long-standing operational concepts. 

Specifically, it's time to rethink the traditional relationship with the banking core.

For nearly a generation, the banking core has been the heart of operations for credit unions and treated as the primary application around which all other technologies revolve. While this approach has served its purpose, the new digital-first era demands that credit unions expand their horizons and look beyond the core to create the efficiencies and processes necessary to compete in the future economy.


The Future Is Fast Approaching

And, I don't mean "the future" as some sort of abstract concept, we are quite literally existing in a bizarre digital renaissance where rapid advancements in technology are creating both opportunities and disruptions. 

Embracing comprehensive technology solutions like OnBase can position credit unions for effective adoption of future technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Robotic Process Automation (RPA), and Predictive Analytics.

I know this is a big statement and you are likely wondering, "But why does that matter?" Well, let me explain.


The Limitation of a Core-Centric Approach

The increasing trends in generative AI, media delivery, and consumer consumption highlight the demand for greater access, speed, thoroughness, and personalization. Focusing primarily on the banking core often means other critical applications and processes take a back seat, limiting an institution's ability to meet these changing consumer expectations. This can lead to inefficiencies, overlooked opportunities for process improvement, and a slower response to technological advancements. For instance, document management, workflow automation, and customer relationship management are all areas that can significantly benefit from modern solutions but are often neglected due to the dominance of the core system.


The Need for Holistic Integration

As consumers become more exposed to systems that facilitate speed, accessibility and personalization, their baseline expectations for how their financial institutions serve them will also increase. And you can be certain that larger institutions will quickly adopt and implement tools to meet these needs, further accelerating the shift in consumer expectations 


To truly thrive, credit unions must adopt a holistic approach that integrates all aspects of their operations, establishing the process visibility and awareness needed to adapt and setting the foundational prerequisites necessary for their organization to more effectively embrace change. OnBase, for example is a powerful content services platform that centralizes document and data storage, integrates seamlessly with the core system, and automates workflows. This not only enhances efficiency, but also provides a 360-degree view of operations, crucial for informed decision-making. It consolidates vital information from various departmental and process-specific systems into one unified system, allowing for seamless integration with future-facing systems and tools, irrespective of the banking core application in use.


In essence, by consolidating the vital information from all your applications into a unified system of truth which is itself designed to integrate with current and future applications, you create a sort of integration "skeleton key" that allows you to leverage all your data from all your systems 


Preparing for the Future

With all information centralized from all platforms, OnBase can leverage this encompassing data set with AI (Artificial Intelligence) and ML to automate routine tasks, improve accuracy in data processing, and provide insights through advanced analytics. For instance, AI-driven data extraction with intelligent document processing can reduce manual entry errors, while ML algorithms can predict customer behavior, helping credit unions tailor their services more effectively. In addition, Robotic Process Automation (RPA) can automate repetitive tasks, freeing up staff to focus on more strategic activities. 

OnBase’s integration capabilities ensure seamless implementation of these tools, allowing processes to run smoothly without disrupting the core system and other line-of-business applications. Rather than maintaining multiple integration points for various tools and systems, OnBase acts as both a central data repository and a grand connector, enabling data to feed and drive other systems and tools.


With centralized data in OnBase, credit unions can harness predictive analytics to forecast trends, identify potential risks, and uncover opportunities. This proactive approach enables better strategic planning and a more agile response to market changes.


Embracing Digital Transformation

Digital transformation may seem like a buzzword, but in reality it is a necessary evolution for credit unions aiming to stay competitive. By looking beyond the core, credit unions can unlock the full potential of their technology investments, and systems like OnBase provide the foundation for this transformation, offering the flexibility to adapt to market changes and scale to accommodate future innovations.

As credit union leaders, it’s crucial to recognize that the core system, while essential, is just one piece of the puzzle. Sure, the core is a very big piece of the puzzle, but by embracing solutions like OnBase, you prepare your organization for the future, ensuring that you’re not only keeping pace with technological advancements but also setting the stage for long-term success. Now is the time to look beyond the core, explore deeper future-facing considerations, and lead your credit union into a new era of efficiency and innovation.


Datum Evolve is here to guide you on this journey, offering expert insights and tailored solutions to help your credit union thrive in the digital age and redefine what’s possible.

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