The Best Way to Get Familiar With Your Products? Use Them!


During my career, I’ve worked many different jobs, including food service, customer service, a credit union, a bank, and currently at a CUSO. No matter what position I held, or what position I aspired to have, experience was the key. One of the most common interview questions is: “What is your experience and how will it apply to this position?”

No matter if you are a new employee or a veteran, we can all learn new things. Training and learning are genuine keys to success. Most people really benefit from hands on training or learning, and what I have noticed while working as an Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) Account Executive is that many clients are missing the easiest hands-on training available: using the services that the credit union offers and promotes! My experience has shown that many clients are not familiar with the products and services that they are trying to assist their members with every day.

Get to know your services

Bill pay is a service that I frequently help credit union clients work with, and I have benefited so much by using this service personally. Using the same technology as members allows me see things from their perspective. When I enrolled for bill pay, I set up a couple of payees and then connected a couple of eBills. I make payments from time to time and have used the Pay Anyone (person to person) service as well. This experience has helped me answer questions more quickly and explain this service to others more clearly. Best of all, it took me very little time. Are you enrolled in bill pay? It will help you instruct your members, and as a bonus, you might find it useful to help you centralize your personal finances.

I daresay there are many missed opportunities in hands-on training. Using a product or service can give us so much more knowledge than reading a reference booklet. Now, I’m not saying that every employee should have to use every single product, but for instance, if your position involves helping members find a loan that suits their needs, then knowing all of the products, rates, terms, and where to point that member for resources is incredibly important. The same is true for credit union staff that help members with electronic services like ATMs, online banking, and mobile apps –  they should know how the screens look, what features are available, and how to enroll.

Walk in your members’ shoes

Set up your smart phone with Apple Pay or Samsung Pay and try it out at the coffee shop on your way to work. Browse your credit union website, and know what interactive services you have, your rates, and your loan applications. Use an ATM to make a deposit and see how the holds work and when the funds show in your account. Sign up for bill pay and add a couple of payees.

Does your credit union have credit cards with rewards? Is there an employee that utilizes them? Ask them about it and how the rewards work! Send money to a coworker and have them send it back to you. The action of sending money person to person has exploded with services like Venmo, Zelle, Cash App, and many others. Be proactive, check with your debit card vendor and see what services your credit union is currently accepting and how to activate more! Your members are looking for and learning new ways to stay organized in an ever-busy world, so I challenge you to do the same!

There are many, many more things you can do. It doesn’t take much time and it will help you better serve your members. You never know, it might inspire you with new ideas for progress, personally or professionally. And we know that your mission is to serve your members better every day. If you’ve found something new or interesting from using your products and services, tell us in the comments below!


  • Ron Daly#1

    November 1, 2019

    You’re right on Linda. Virtual StrongBox is a FinTech Partner for secure storage of documents and receipts for CU*A credit unions. Understanding products offered by the CU and their use cases are the key to great member service. It’s very easy to talk about something you know and how it would help a member. When we compare adoption rates across clients we see a big separation between CUs where employees use and understand the product and those CUs that don’t encourage employees to use the products offered. The top tier CUs always say “we train our employees on all products and encourage them to use them.”


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