With roots as an IBM-sponsored credit union, New England Federal Credit Union (NEFCU) has a very technical membership base that demands high quality electronic services. Even back in the 1990s, the Vermont-based credit union recognized the importance of having a state-of-the-art website in place to satisfy the needs of their busy members. NEFCU also knew that they wanted a highly competent partner for the long run, not just your average website developer. After extensive due diligence that included a nationwide vendor search and an in-depth interview process, the senior management team chose a firm with over ten years of experience and one that specializes in Credit Union website development: Level 9.
Sharon Mueller, NEFCU’s Remote Delivery Manager, was a key player in the vendor selection process and an ongoing liaison with Level 9. She describes their relationship: “Level 9 brings an incredible openness and exchange of ideas to the table, so it was a great choice for us to work with them.” Since the credit union’s initial relationship with Level 9 over five years ago, the firm has helped NEFCU design, re-design and update their website. Sharon emphasizes that “Level 9 is very innovative and energetic. We really like their commitment to leading edge technology and the strong retail angle that their designers bring to the table.”
While some website developers have a “we know what is best for you” attitude, Sharon appreciates Level 9’s “back and forth approach that allows us to build off of each other.” This “lead and listen” outlook facilitates open communications and is a hallmark of Level 9’s award winning work with not only NEFCU, but dozens of other progressive credit unions across the country. Level 9’s eBranch solutions are designed to cross channels (ATMs, kiosks, marketing materials, etc.) with powerful brand integrations. Sharon confirms this from experience: “Level 9 has a deep understanding of our brand and has been a real presence in effectively delivering our branding.”
Even though Level 9 is in constant contact with NEFCU and performs updates on a regular basis, Sharon and her team need to be able to perform daily maintenance on their heavily trafficked website. That is where Level 9’s suite of eBranch Enhancements - eBranch Marketer, eBranch Monitor, and eBranch Advisor - come into play. These powerful but easy to use tools allow the credit union’s staff to quickly make changes to their website. For example, product rates are always changing so it would not be convenient or cost effective to have an outside firm handle this ongoing task. With Level 9’s system in place, a non-technical employee at the credit union can make the changes in one place and they are automatically replicated to all of the affected pages on NEFCU’s website.
NEFCU has also found new uses for Level 9’s solutions; according to Sharon “Level 9’s tools have been such a good fit for us, and so open and flexible, that we have deployed them internally on our heavily used intranet.” Level 9’s talented designers and experienced developers were also called upon to assist with the transactional side NEFCU’s operations with both online banking and bill payment re-designs and integration initiatives.
These successful projects have finally cumulated in the ultimate partnership between Level 9 and NEFCU – the formation of a CUSO called L9.com. One of L9.com’s first and most important projects is the development of Safe2Login which is a solution that acts as a third-party trust authority that meets NCUA Internet banking mutual authentication mandates. Sharon confirms that “we have an excellent relationship with Level 9 – they are fantastic to work with. Together, we keep learning, trying new things and working hard to deliver a better and safer online experience for our members.”