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Financial Check-Up

Credit Union :Cutting Edge
Assets :$34,300,000
Address :Po Box 22192 | Milwaukie, OR 97269
Start Date :February 2009

Rates, Fees, and Terms :

User Qualifications :

Program is open to any member.

Program Details :

The credit union refers to its member service representatives as “Financial Doctors.” Members are encouraged to sign up for a FREE annual check-up with a doctor who, together with the member, review the member’s account and product usage to ensure the member understands how products work and is receiving full advantage of all credit union offerings. The discussions are member-driven and are apt to include information about financial goals, current product usage, account packages, limits on debit cards, and credit report information. The goal is to increase members’ financial literacy by sharing financial information to help them achieve their goals.

Marketing Strategy :

  • Website
  • Brochures in lobby
  • Postcard reminders are mailed each month to 1/12 of the CU members, so each member receives a reminder once a year
  • Patients who see a financial doctor receive a lollipop and a compact first aid kit
  • All patients seen for the month are entered into a drawing to win a deluxe 299-piece first aid kit

Program Results/Statistics :

Approximately 120 members have received financial check-ups. Each check-up lasts about one hour and on average, the credit union gains two new products per check-up.

Member Benefits :

  • Members receive an annual check-up and set financial goals
  • Financial doctors help ensure members are aware of credit union products and are using them effectively
  • Members with credit blemishes learn how to improve their credit scores
  • Members are given a prescription pad that includes goals set, a “to do list,” and facts about using their debit cards

Additional Information :

Since the financial check up is member-driven, it can result in a different discussion with each member, says Ginger Baehr, director of marketing & business development. “Often members are unfamiliar with things such as daily limits at an ATM or point-of-sale transactions,” she says. “Or perhaps they don’t understand what affects their credit score or why they have been turned down for a loan. The financial doctor can help with any of these questions or help the member set goals for retirement. The check-up is designed to be a conversation with the member.”

The doctors wear white lab coats and stethoscopes. “We have fun while providing useful information to our members,” notes Baehr. “When members come in and see the white coats, they say, ‘Oh, you’re playing doctor today.’” The check ups have received lots of positive feedback from members, such as:

  • We appreciated the financial check-up. It allowed us to make some changes in our services and to consider future changes. This is something we should do periodically.
  • It was great – a great idea! Very helpful to be able to review it all.

A copy of Cutting Edge FCU’s lobby flier and prescription form are included under the “Resource” Section.