Excellence in Technology Awards
Credit union technology professionals know that finding the right solution to a challenge is often determined by understanding the bigger picture and developing innovative new approaches to solving complex problems. While there may be no right way or wrong way to face a technology challenge, there is most certainly a BEST way!
Identifying these new approaches and recognizing their universal application to credit unions nationwide is the purpose of the CUNA Technology Council's Excellence Awards.
Awards will be presented to credit unions achieving technology excellence in two asset groups:
- Assets less than $500 Million
- • Assets $500 Million or greater
We invite you to submit your innovative and/or excellent use of technology for award consideration. We have included a list of examples for a strategic activity below:
- Innovation: Describe a technology innovation effort that introduced new services, features, or a platform to the environment and involved changes to architecture, process/procedures, user acceptance, and added value for both technology and business teams. Share details on the circumstances that led to the initiation of the effort, evaluation of the solution, challenges / successes of the implementation, and overall outcomes/achievements.
- Member Service/Convenience: Describe the technical environment and system integration technologies that allow new/existing members to open accounts/loans or receive information on existing accounts/loans across all delivery channels. Operational improvements such as the implementation of online chat using text or video to improve member service may be considered. Place emphasis on how these technologies benefit both members externally and employees internally using the system.
- Sales Management/Marketing Automation: Describe the automated system environment that manages member information and creates personalized product offers based upon member data and the use of business development software for sales lead planning and tracking, software to measure and monitor marketing return on investment, customer / member relationship strategies and accomplishments, and promotion via the use of electronic methods such as search engine optimization, email marketing, and ads via mobile banking. Document how the system manages the member information database and creates, delivers, and fulfills the offers. Place emphasis on how these systems benefit both members externally and employees internally using the system.
- Leadership: Describe excellence in leading, mentoring, or other aspects of leadership of an individual IT within the credit union; or using technology to provide leadership in another department within the credit union or the entire credit union toward some positive change and benefit; or providing leadership to other credit unions or the entire credit union industry. The entry can be for an individual or a group within the credit union.
- Information Security/Privacy: Describe the technical and procedural environment that minimizes the possibility of unauthorized access to member information from both internal and external sources. Place emphasis upon the authentication, regulatory compliance, security, and privacy technologies employed.
- Technology Infrastructure: Describe the technical and procedural environment that allows the infrastructure to be safely accessed by authorized parties, how the system is monitoring this access, and the current/future storage management capabilities of the system.
Describe modernization initiatives undertaken to increase business value and offload manual efforts. Can include cloud migrations, usage of APIs, microservices, automation, RPA, multiple system integrations, or any other techniques to solve challenges and improve experiences for employees and/or members.
- Miscellaneous: Any technology success story you have that does not fit the other examples. It could involve an application, service to members or users, unique technology solutions, cost savings or anything else you feel qualifies as a best practice.
- Entrant’s credit union must have a current member of the CUNA Technology Council.
- Project must have occurred prior to the entry deadline of the current calendar year and have at least substantially, if not completely, occurred within the last 12 months and not in years prior to that 12-month period.
- Entrant may submit multiple entries. Each entry for consideration must be submitted separately.
- Entry(s) must be received no later than July 25 of the current calendar year.
The Selection Process
A panel of Technology Council Executive Committee members and industry professionals will select the Excellence in Technology Award winners in the two asset categories above. Selection will be based on candidates’ strategy, process, application, and results.
Award winners will be recognized at the CUNA Technology Council Conference. Each winning credit union will receive a complimentary conference registration. Winning entries will be featured in a press release and in CUNA News in addition to being showcased on the CUNA Technology Council site.
How to Enter
Complete the online entry form that includes the following. Limit your entry to no more than 2-3 pages including supporting documents.
- An Executive Summary that explains in detail a specific (or series of related) project/activity that provided extraordinary results for your credit union. List the specific goals and results of the project/activity. Include three specific examples of how this practice contributed to the success of your credit union.
- Supporting documents (optional) – should help demonstrate the value or benefits described in your Executive Summary so that the submission can be thoroughly reviewed and understood. Supporting documents can include photographs, presentations, charts, and videos.
The entry form must be completed and submitted online. The steps below outline exactly how to enter.
- Register an Account
- Create Your Entry
- Upload Digital Files
- Submit Entry
Entries must be received no later than 11:59 pm CST on July 25, 2022.
Entrants will be notified of the status of their entry by August 5, 2022.
If you have questions about the entry procedures or criteria for the award, please contact CUNA Council Administration at 800-356-9655, ext. 4018 or firstname.lastname@example.org.