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Expense reduction leads to silver-lining results

first_img 17SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Kelly Flynn Kelly has over 15 years of sales and management experience helping financial institutions of all sizes. She leads a team whose charter is to optimize the value of every contract … Web: www.JMFA.com Details By all accounts, the impact of the coronavirus has created more of a shift in business operations, economic certainty and consumer behavior than any other challenges faced by the credit union industry since the turn of the century. Since the beginning of the pandemic, earnings have taken a hit, interest rates have remained low and non-interest income is on the decline. On the other side of the coin, expenses have increased—due in part to the additional costs required to allow employees to work effectively from home and to maintain the proper PPE, cleaning supplies and social distancing materials to keep staff and members safe in facilities that have remained open. And while the outlook for how long an economic recovery will take remains uncertain, you can make a positive impact on your credit union’s immediate and long-term performance by trimming the costs of the services you use every day.Proactive contract review can net significant savings Even during normal circumstances, negotiating service contracts can be time-consuming and intimidating if you don’t have expertise in that area. Now, given the increased demands on your time and added concerns about how to safely provide the services your members desperately need, it can be easy to let contracts auto-renew, thinking that next time one comes due you will have more of an opportunity to deal with it appropriately. But by accepting a vendor’s initial renewal offering, without reviewing the contents and fine print, you could be missing out on substantial savings and improved contract terms. What’s more, possible signing incentives could provide the extra funds you need to help offset the added expenses caused by the pandemic and fund initiatives that will improve your service delivery for years to come.What you should know about your current vendor contract detailsWhile you may have become comfortable with the services or products you have purchased to maintain your operations and service delivery, how certain are you about whether they offer the most value for your credit union? Have you ever wondered how they compare to other providers in the marketplace? A professional review of your service contracts can uncover the smallest details in the vendor agreements and provide you with critical information on things such as:Are you getting the best rates available?Are there additional savings opportunities beyond the vendor’s standard pricing package?Are you paying for services you don’t use or need, or unknowingly duplicating services?How much could you be saving by bundling services?Are your vendors innovating their products to provide consistent service in the future?Do your providers have your institution’s best interests at heart?How much could you save or improve your agreement terms by negotiating the contract instead of simply accepting a vendor’s initial offer?Expert advice adds insight and leverage to your contract negotiationsGoing through your current contracts line item by line item to determine areas where you can negotiate better terms can be overwhelming. And if you aren’t familiar with all of the options that are available, how do you even know what to ask for or how to state your case for renegotiating contract costs or terms?When you partner with a contract negotiations expert, you gain the advantage of having someone on your side who has specialized experience and knowledge about what other institutions are paying for specific services, what types of signing bonuses are currently being offered on contract agreements, as well as which providers will likely meet your specific needs and service expectations—both now and in the future. Just make sure you chose a contract professional who knows what to ask for on your behalf and who has a track record of negotiating five, six and even seven-figure savings for the types of contracts that are being reviewed. This will allow you to take advantage of effective negotiations skills that can significantly reduce your costs without adding to your workload or taking you out of your comfort zone.Now is a great time to renegotiateIf you have contracts that will expire in the next 18-24 months, now is the time to begin the review process. And while it may seem like trying to negotiate contract terms during a pandemic might not be successful, the truth is vendors are especially focused on maintaining business relationships right now. So, it’s really a great time to let your vendors prove their commitment to keeping you as a satisfied customer. If you’re not quite convinced, learn how Greenwood Credit Union was able to uncover its silver lining with significant savings from essential service contracts—that will benefit current and future improvements—as the pandemic impacted business operations across the country.last_img read more

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Wisconsin looking to avenge offseason debut

first_imgThe Badger softball team plays host to Loyola-Chicago tonight in a doubleheader, the team’s second twinbill in two days. The Badgers (15-19, 3-7 Big Ten), fresh off a pair of wins against North Dakota State Monday, are ready for a Loyola (12-23, 5-5 Horizon) team that dropped two of three against Illinois-Chicago last weekend.Wisconsin has had Loyola’s number in past years. The Badgers are 15-1-1 lifetime against the Ramblers, who last came to Madison for a doubleheader last season, losing the first game 8-0 in a six-inning affair and dropping the second 2-1. The last time Loyola won against the Badgers was during the 2000 season, and Wisconsin has taken the last five meetings between the teams.The Loyola matchup will be another in a long stretch of home games for the Badgers, who have played all of April in the friendly confines of Goodman Diamond, with the exception of two games at Illinois-Chicago and Valparaiso.The home stretch hasn’t been as kind to Wisconsin as expected, though. The Badgers have gone 3-7 so far at home, including a stretch of seven straight home losses that ended last night against NDSU.The Ramblers have a new look this season, with a new coach at the helm. First year coach Yvette Healy has brought an optimism to a club that has been in the middle of the pack over the years, and although their struggles have continued this season, a reversal of fortune might be in the future for Loyola.The Ramblers returned 10 letterwinners from last year’s squad, including seven starters. That turnaround might have been evident in the meeting between the Badgers and the Ramblers in fall, a game that Wisconsin lost.“They beat us in the fall, and we want to get them back for that,” pitcher Eden Brock said of their offseason loss.Loyola brings with them some talent on offense. They are led by senior Keilah Williams and freshman Kristen Cefalu, who are both hitting above .300. Williams leads the team with a .320 batting average, and she has also hit two homers this season. Cefalu is hitting .317, but she has only 3 RBI and no home runs. Allison Scanlin’s bat has come alive of late, having been named Co-Horizon League Softball Player of the Week April 12. She leads the team with 21 RBI and four home runs.The Ramblers have struggled on the mound this season, however. Their most worked pitcher Katie Shupback holds just a 3-9 record with a 4.66 ERA — unhealthy statistics at the Division I level. The overall team ERA of 5.92 poses a big problem for a squad looking to get outs against a red-hot Badger offense.The Wisconsin bats have had some pop this season. They continue to build on their team record of 32 home runs, already passing the previous record of 23 set in 2003. They have also averaged 0.93 home runs per game, which is 22nd in the country.The offense is led by Kris Zacher who is hitting .400 and has recently seen time at the leadoff spot in the lineup. She is not only a deep threat, where she has hit five homers already this season, just missing out on number six yesterday, but she is a threat on the base paths as well. Zacher has stolen nine bases in nine attempts this season.“I think we can score early with Kris [Zacher] leading off for us at this point because she’s going to steal a base for us; she’s so quick,” explained head coach Karen Gallagher.There are others in the lineup who are equally formidable. Catcher Boo Gillette has been the slugger for the team, hitting seven dingers and 22 RBI, but she can also hit for average, as her .347 mark bears out. Anastasia Miller, after her amazing performance in yesterday’s first game, is hitting .326 with eight home runs and 21 RBI.The Badgers have seen the pitching they need this season as well. Katie Layne and Eden Brock got the job done yesterday with both pitchers going the distance in their games without giving up an earned run. In games against conference powerhouses Michigan and Northwestern, it was the pitching that kept the Badgers within striking distance in three out of those four contests.But the thorn in Wisconsin’s side continues to be their fielding. Although the Badgers lead the Big Ten with 15 double plays, they haven’t made the routine plays that have been the hallmark of this club in years past.“It’s mental,” Gallagher said of the team’s defense. “Kids do this every day, and they can throw and catch in their sleep, and when it comes down to it, we’re making throwing and catching errors.”Wisconsin will have to put it together soon, though, as the Ramblers have shown they can beat the Badgers.“We really just want to win. We’ve had some losses lately, and we’re not too happy about it,” Anastasia Miller said. “We want to get those back and get our record in a better place and just feel better as a team.”last_img read more

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