Credit Union Australia (CUA) has outsourced the development and hosting of its new web site to open source specialists Squiz in the first of a series of initiatives aimed at achieving a more agile approach to IT.
Under the multi-year deal, Squiz will host the credit union's online banking web site and provide 24x7 monitoring and support.
Newly-appointed credit union CIO, David Gee, told iTnews that the hosting deal with Squiz is the organisation's first step into appealing to a new customer segment and lowering IT costs.
Next year, the bank will launch online banking apps for Android and iOS devices and go live with a packaged core banking system.
"We want to focus on providing our core [financial] services," he said. "Traditionally the organisation has been fairly conservative, but we will now be using external providers in a bigger fashion.
"There has obviously been a great deal of due diligence on the processes at Squiz, which has some major clients in business and government. We found [Squiz] could offer a different level of support and monitoring, and the ROI stacks up well."
CUA will decommission its legacy online banking site within the month, which had been hosted on an IBM mainframe behind the company's firewall. But the credit union will continue to invest in mainframe technology for supporting its core banking refresh.
Better by design
The new CUA web site was developed to appeal to a younger demographic than the credit union's traditional customer base.
"The design is very clean, which is in line with the aspirations of customers we were trying to attract," Gee said. "These customers are in their thirties, about to get married and have kids or take out mortgages."
Between the web site and the new apps he felt CUA could appeal to this demographic "without alienating our current customer base", many of which still prefer retail customer service.
The site devotes a lot of real estate to advertising CUA's value-added banking products such as mortgages.
The web site also features a re-designed login screen for CUA's online banking service which reassures users they are at the correct page.
The service warns customers to remain vigilant in only using the CUA site to access online banking and to never trust an email that attempts to link directly to an online banking session.
The credit union has, in addition to the major four banks, been the target of several phishing attempts for customer information in the recent past.
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