1st community federal credit union redboard case study

1st Community Federal Credit Union (1CFCU) is an $385 million credit union headquartered in San Angelo, Texas.

Like other credit unions across the country, 1CFCU became aware of inefficiencies and accountability issues in their audit process that—at least in the area of findings remediation—were problematic, on a couple of fronts.


Overly Manual Processes = Inefficiencies and Inconsistent Accountability

“Our audits were typically paper-based,” said Callie Baker, the compliance officer at 1CFCU. “I would physically have to print everything and make sure that I kept all of my files in order to make sure that they coincided with my audit steps to make sure that I had everything documented correctly.”

Equally problematic was that Baker had to constantly email business unit staff to ensure that everything was collected and submitted on a timely basis. This tedious process was time-consuming. Worse, it didn’t always work very well.

Once items were addressed, Baker said, it was up to each person to be sure that the corrections were being made. “And a lot of the corrections kind of fell through because there wasn’t a way for us to get reminded. They were just on a list.” She added that with several audits happening at the same time, “it was hard to be sure that items were being corrected as the manager said that they would be.”

Executive Vice President Drew Schmid made a similar observation: “Sometimes items slipped through the cracks.” They would discover findings, he said, as an audit or exam approached, that were “supposed to have been remediated but were never addressed.” With their tedious manual processes in place, they simply did not have the bandwidth to follow up on everything with excellence.

Schmid and Baker also reported that, with their old process, there was no effective way to surface—nor to report to the Supervisory Committee—whether items had been properly remediated or not. This was an accountability problem.

A Seismic Increase in Efficiency

When 1CFCU implemented Redboard, improvements in efficiency were immediate and dramatic. Baker said simply, “Our efficiency just went through the roof.”

Schmid said, “Once we’ve set up these request lists for various audits, Redboard tracks it all. And when it comes time to assemble the information for our external auditor, it’s great because we can punch out the entire list. It is all appropriately labeled in the schema that they’re requesting. It's super easy and has been a huge time savings for us.”

Baker appreciates that she can see, at a glance, where she is in each step and that she no longer has to manually send a stream of important email reminders. The system handles that automatically. She says she saves hours on every audit.

In the 2.5 months since 1CFCU began using Redboard, Baker said, “We’ve been able to work on 17 audits.” She added that she is “at least 60% more efficient” than she was using 1CFCU’s previous system. Schmid estimated that the credit union’s business units have realized at least 40%-50% increases in efficiency as well.

An Equally Significant Jump in Accountability

One of the things Schmid said 1CFCU appreciates about Redboard is that “all of our findings have a deadline, and people are held accountable for those deadlines.” Schmid called this a “huge lift” for the credit union because “things are not going to slip through the cracks anymore.”

Perhaps equally importantly, Schmid noted, Redboard has “brought us a whole new level of transparency for the Board and the Supervisory Committee.” He said the NCUA has even noticed and expressed its appreciation, from a governance perspective, for the improved reporting and transparency.

It has, Baker said, “brought a standardized process to our organization.”

Improvement… Within a Few Days

Baker said that the credit union began seeing positive results “within a few days” after Redboard was set up. She said, “It didn’t take us very long to get acclimated to the system. And once we figured it out, we immediately started to use it and began putting audits in.”

In fact, Baker said, 1CFCU began to use the system before they had even gone through Redboard’s standard onboarding training. Though that does not reflect Redboard’s recommended process, it does speak to the system’s ease of use.

“I can’t stress enough how easy Redboard is to use,” Baker said. “Our business staff,” she continued, “all say the same thing: that it is super easy to use and that they’ve had no issues.”

To learn more, please visit Redboard.com.

Posted in: