States and businesses continue searching for safe ways to reopen while the Covid-19 virus spreads across the country. It’s a stressful endeavor, and one that must be done strategically. If not done well and thoughtfully, businesses like credit unions risk frustrating and alienating people.
So, with that in mind, we’re looking at what different organizations might need in order to successfully reopen to the public. These tips come by way of our friends at PaymentVision, a company with experience in keeping business payment solutions running smoothly.
Here are three Covid-19 business tips for reopening during the pandemic.
1. Avoid pointless rules
Some rules are fine and make perfect sense. For example, wearing masks has been shown (repeatedly) to minimize the spread of the virus. Frankly, it’s a wonder they aren’t required in more places.
However, other rules seem more arbitrary and even harmful. For example, cutting store hours forces more people to crowd branches in a shorter time span. Extending branch hours may be a better bet.
Similarly, managing lines is another challenge. One-way lines can impede traffic, and limiting the number of people allowed in the building can create long lines outside. Keeping six feet of distance can be helpful too, but it may be difficult to maintain during peak hours. Ultimately, it’s best to weigh your options according to your expected traffic and the layout of your branch.
2. Prepare ahead for on-premise visits
Especially for bigger banking concerns, people who visit the branch might best be prepared ahead of time.
If someone is applying for a loan, send them all the necessary paperwork to fill out at home. Then, when they reach the branch, they can minimize their time spent in it because they don’t need to work through any forms.
Similarly, it might make sense to space out appointments. That is, more than usual. Nobody should be kept waiting on premises. Give yourself a slightly bigger buffer.
3. Go digital
At CU 2.0, we may often sound like a broken record:
Digital transformation… digital transformation… digital transformation…
But during the pandemic, it’s even more important than usual. After all, though computers can get viruses, they can’t contract or transmit Covid-19.
Some things you might consider putting on your digital roadmap to improve the member experience include:
Clinging to the brick-and-mortar model of banking will be increasingly difficult as the rest of the world goes digital. The in-branch experience in great, but sometimes people would rather open a new account while wearing pajamas on their couch. Failing to offer such a convenience (luxury?) will hurt the member experience in the long run.
These are interesting times, and many businesses are counting on agility and innovation to survive. While some credit unions may feel confident in their approach, the willingness and ability to change could be the difference between growth… and failure.
To read more about Covid-19 business tips for reopening during the pandemic, see PaymentVision’s post. To read more about credit unions, fintechs, and the role of finance in technology, subscribe to our blog!