U.S. Central Closure Provides Credit Unions The Opportunity To Leapfrog Into 21st Century Technology

Cloud Computing Reduces the Burden of Compliance, Cost and Helps Attract New Members with Advancements in Electronic Payment Solutions
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Jan. 31, 2012 - PRLog -- Recently the NCUA announced that it plans to end the U.S. Central Bridge ACH operations by December 31st of this year.  Currently 18 corporate credit unions along with their natural-person credit unions must transition to a new ACH vendor. In order to expedite the process, on July 1, 2012 the NCUA will raise the ACH fees by 80% for credit unions that still utilize the U.S. Central Bridge.

“The fate of U.S. Central is unfortunate as well as the disruption it may cause, however this is a great opportunity for credit unions to update their electronic payment offerings and add modern member-centric solutions” says Donald Latson former Vice President of Product Development for U.S. Central Federal Credit Union. “The U.S. Central Bridge was based on antiquated technology and this is a perfect time for credit unions to upgrade their systems and streamline operations and compliance while reducing cost” he adds.  

The advent of cloud computing and software as a service (SaaS) delivery models allow smaller organizations to adopt the latest technologies without the capital investment, infrastructure or maintenance requirements. Michael Labella, CEO of Cpay360, a company that specializes in electronic payment solutions and software for financial institutions agrees. He compares U.S. Central’s ACH platform to a dial-up Internet connection. “Sure dial-up will connect you to the Web, but you won’t be able to enjoy all the benefits that the Internet has to offer.” He continues, “companies like Cpay360 that offer electronic payment solutions and technology delivered through a SaaS model allow credit unions to automate many back office and regulatory reporting without the cost of owning, maintaining and continuously upgrading those systems.”

Cloud computing or hosted solutions have become popular with small and medium sized organizations because of their versatility and affordability. “In a hosted environment the cost of upgrading and maintaining the system and keeping it secure is shared across the various users, such as in the case of condominiums or gated communities” says Marcie Haitema, Managing Partner at JBD Consulting and former Executive Vice President at U.S. Central Credit Union. “Sharing resources makes it possible for community financial institutions to afford better technology and security while reducing cost at the same time.” Haitema continues, “cloud computing is just a new flavor of outsourcing, something credit unions were doing with U.S. Central to begin with.”

Hosted solutions provide many benefits over traditional systems such as the avoidance of large capital expenditures, easy accessibility, automatic redundancy, and lower operating costs. Credit union officers should explore all their options when choosing a new ACH vendor and think of their future needs. They should also thoroughly understand potential system limitations and features.

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Cpay360, an innovator in banking and payment technology offers a comprehensive suite of payment products and services through a SaaS delivery model. Cpay360 provides online banking platforms, mobile banking apps, remote deposit capture and IVR systems.
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Tags:Software As A Service, Saas, Cloud Computing, Ach, Credit Unions
Industry:Banking, Software
Location:Florida - United States
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