Jul 08 2016

Jump-Starting Performance Improvement: A Case Study from Elevations Credit Union

A sustainable credit union seals operational gaps and streamlines service to members. After all, members are the most important factor in this equation. A consistent process improvement program helps achieve this ideal state of exemplary member loyalty, financial growth, and operational efficiency that so many organizations long for.

This report explores the performance improvement tactics of Elevations Credit Union (ECU), based in Boulder, Colorado. In 2014, ECU became the first credit union to receive the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA). The MBNQA was established by the US Congress in 1987 to recognize organizations for excellence in innovation, improvement, and performance. A commitment to quality and consistency is the ideal recipe for delivering exceptional member service.

ECU’s focus on Baldrige has driven tremendous growth. Between 2010 and 2015, ECU achieved the following results:

  • Mortgage market production tripled between 2011 and 2015. ECU became #1 in mortgage market share in Boulder County, originating two to three times the value of Wells Fargo and Chase.
  • Membership grew by 35%.
  • Deposit balances increased by 64%.
  • Was the #1 credit union mortgage originator in Colorado, with over $1 billion (B) in new mortgage loans written in 2015.

The Baldrige criteria for performance improvement aren’t suitable for every credit union. But this report will serve as a guide on the fundamental principles credit unions should take into account when pursuing performance improvement initiatives.

Report Number 402