Onboarding Solution Helps Build Stronger Member Relationships

When a multi-branch credit union recently began offering members the ability to open accounts online, creating a centralized, automated mechanism for communicating with new online members became challenging.

The credit union asked Strategic Link business partner Harland Clarke for a solution to help decrease overall new account attrition. However, the request came with stipulations, as the solution also needed to improve existing communication with new online members and facilitate the procurement of necessary print documentation for internet-based accounts.

Harland Clarke’s onboarding solution is an ongoing integrated process that builds long-term relationships by connecting credit unions with their members through multiple channels, delivering the right message at the right time.

Harland Clarke met the credit union’s needs by targeting both internet- and branch-based members with deposit-related accounts, such as checking, money market and savings. The next step was to devise a communication strategy based on the accounts each member opened. The goals were to thank members for their business, educate them about using their new accounts and suggest complementary products.

The onboarding program launched with three separate direct mail communications. A welcome packet thanking new members was mailed within seven days of account opening and included a signature card for online customers. This package was followed by two more mailings, one after 30 days and another at 60-days. The content of each was relevant and engaging and was tied directly to the type of account opened.

The welcome letter came with a tear-off side coupon that offered products to complement the account. At 30 days and again at 60 days, a letter arrived in a standard business-sized envelope with a tear-off coupon offering services to further engage members.

Harland Clarke’s onboarding program produced a statistically significant account retention lift of 6.7 percent and household retention lift of 2.5 percent compared with a control group, as well as an average of 95 percent account retention for new members. In addition, the program generated considerable increases in incremental balances and delivered a statistically significant balance retention lift of 6.4 percent.

Learn more about Harland Clarke’s onboarding solution on the company’s website, where users can also download a free white paper, entitled, “10 Strategies for an Award-Wnning Onboarding Process.”


Strategic Link is the NWCUAs wholly-owned service corporation, providing the Associations member credit unions with exclusive high-quality, competitively-priced products and discounted services. Questions? Contact Sales & Marketing Associate Craig Reed: 206.340.4789, creed@nwcua.org.

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