Unlocking the power of consumer-permissioned data for credit unions: A conversation with Credit Union National Association

Credit unions, like many other businesses, rely on consumer data to make informed decisions and drive growth. However, in an era where automation is just as important as customer experience to drive competition, credit unions must rely on new technologies to enable proactive service for their members. Consumer-permissioned data provides a solution that allows credit unions to automatically verify income and employment (VOIE) of their members without interrupting the significant customer experience. By leveraging this type of data, credit unions can gain a better understanding of their members' needs and preferences, which can ultimately drive growth and improve overall member experiences. 

Industry-leading CPD platform speaks with CUNA

MeasureOne’s Chief Revenue Officer, Yaron Oren, sat down with Credit Union National Assocation (CUNA) News Specialist, Yeekeng Yang, to talk about how credit unions can leverage consumer-permissioned data and why using CPD is a win-win for credit unions and their customers

Yeekeng: What is consumer permission data (CPD) and why is it important?

Yaron: Consumer permission data, or CPD for short, is essentially a new model for data sharing.  Traditionally, the exchange of data between consumers and businesses is done in one of two ways. The first way is that the consumer would manually share data, and that data, whether in the form of a document or otherwise, would be processed manually by a business. This process is full of friction—it's slow and costly for everyone.

The other approach is you have data brokers that collect and sell data. A credit bureau is a good example in the context of lending. These organizations tend to be monopolistic, expensive, with limitations around coverage and quality of data. CPD aims to solve all these problems by enabling businesses to access higher quality, faster and cheaper, and without compromising consumer privacy.

Yeekeng: How does CPD work? Can you describe the business and applicant experiences?

Yaron: The basic premise is rather than a business collecting, using, and selling consumer data as they please, those consumers are brought into the middle of a transaction where their data is shared and exchanged, and they are explicitly permissioning the sharing of that data. Plaid is the most familiar example of how CPD works. I'll use that one:

About 100 million consumers (that they report) have used Plaid to share banking data, whether they realize it or not. If you've ever been asked to log into your bank account to connect to a digital payment app like PayPal or Venmo, that's CPD. Plaid is the tech infrastructure company making that connection between your bank, PayPal, Venmo, or the third party application.

MeasureOne takes this approach and extends it to any data in any online consumer account. The consumer is securely providing login credentials to an account they have access to online along with their consent, and in turn, measure one or any other CPD provider is automatically pulling that data from their account and sharing it with the business requesting the data.

Yeekeng: What are some of the general challenges CPD addresses?

Yaron:  [There are] three main challenges that CPD addresses: Number one is friction due to manual document based processes. A second big challenge is fraud. Most data is self reported, whereas CPD is pulling data directly from primary sources so that the provenance of that data is ensured. Number three is that the market wants alternatives to monopolistic data aggregators. Those are really, at a high level, the three general challenges we see that CPD addresses.

Yeekeng: What are some of the challenges credit unions face today that CPD can address?

Yaron: When we talk to credit unions…at a high level the biggest challenges they're tackling is how to streamline lending experiences to grow their business and deepen relationships with customers. More specifically, we see these challenges playing out in the context of verification of income and employment, which is central to most lending workflows.

The credit unions that we speak to and work with tend to fall into two buckets:  The first group is doing VOIE manually and looking for automation. The second group is at the mercy of a traditional data warehouse or broker such as TheWorkNumber and  wants an alternative.

Yeekeng: How is CPD better than legacy data solutions like data warehouses?

Yaron: There are a few benefits over legacy solutions, including data warehouses like The Work Number, especially if we're talking about income and employment verification specifically:

Number one is better coverage. As long as the data exists online, CPD can be used to access it. [Number two is] the quality of the data. Sometimes data within a data warehouse is a little bit out of date, whereas the CPD workflow is pulling data directly in real time, every time from an online account. That means it's always up-to-date. For example, if somebody's employment status has changed from the time they began a loan application to the time it's being funded, then that's something that CPD is uniquely positioned to catch. Finally, number three is simply cost-savings and removing the middle-man so-to-speak.

Yeekeng: How does CPD help credit unions serve more customers and expand their product offerings?

Yaron: One of the common challenges we hear about is verifying income for gig economy or non-W2, non-traditional income earners. As a result, a lot of these consumers are being denied access to credit.  CPD addresses this challenge and enables credit unions to offer their products to these non-traditional income earners. As long as these consumers have some online record showing their earnings, whether it's a payroll account, a bank account—for an Uber driver it’s their online driver dashboard—CPD can make that data more readily available in an authoritative fraud-proof way. 

At MeasureOne, in particular, we're providing connectivity into all the major gig economy systems such as Uber, Lyft, Airbnb, DoorDash, and so forth. So again, these folks who earn their income in this way are able to show proof of income and as a result get access to more products from credit unions.

Yeekeng: I think that's really awesome because more than ever, the gig economy is the biggest it has ever been. And personally, I'm in the gig economy—I'm a musician so I play gigs and do some freelance stuff.  I think more than ever, [income verification for gig workers] is important. 

How does CPD enable cost savings for credit unions?

Yaron: If you're doing manual verifications today, CPD is a time saver and a cost saver. It's about automation and the cost benefits that come with that. You can think of CPD as a tool for loan ops folks to be much more efficient in their job. If you are using somebody like TheWorkNumber, it's more straightforward. We offer a lower price solution, and in cases it's up to 90 % cost savings for our customers.

Yeekeng: What sets Measure One apart from other CPD solutions?

Yaron: Our technology is really what sets us apart. We're the only true scalable CPD platform. There are other companies that provide more consumer-permission data solutions for one particular domain such as payroll or obviously banking. There's few very large companies, like Plaid that I mentioned earlier.

We go broader and deeper in any particular area. MeasureOne today has over 10,000 unique connections to data sources, over 5,000 unique payroll system connections. That's multiples more than our closest competitor. We're providing connectivity into any data domain.

Today, we support insurance data, education data, employment data, income data, brokerage data. We can support any geography. We support UK, Canada, US, and India today, and we can process any document type. Plus we're expanding these capabilities every day. We really truly are the only one stop shop for CPD. You can think of us as Plaid for everything else.

Yeekeng: How can a credit union get started with Measure One?

Yaron: It’s super simple and actually has just in the past week has been made even more simple. For a long time, we’ve had a hosted solution, and we just rolled out a self-serve sign up flow. Anybody can come to our website, Measureone.com, sign up for a 30-day free trial with a credit card and start sending data requests such as verification of income and employment right away.

We also have an embedded API solution. If a credit union has their own platform, we have integrations into Loan Origination Systems (LOSs) like MeridianLink. In those cases, they can either reach out to me directly at yaron@measureone.com or sales@measureone.com. That integration is pretty straightforward to get up and running as well.

Take the next steps with MeasureOne for your credit union

With automated workflows and data directly from the consumer (and at a lower cost all around), the decision to take advantage of consumer-permissioned data is simple. So why not use the industry-leading CPD platform, MeasureOne?

For credit unions, MeasureOne offers:

  • One-month, no risk free trial (and 90%+ cost-savings after the trial ends)
  • Low cost, automated verification of income, employment, insurance, and more
  • Data straight from primary sources (e.g. Payroll systems) ensuring fraud protection and up-to-the-minute accuracy
  • 100% market coverage (over 5,000 supported payroll systems) driving industry leading conversion rates

From income to employment to insurance verification, MeasureOne brings secure, transparent data to the table for the benefit of credit unions and their consumers.

Let MeasureOne help streamline your credit union’s lending operations and continue driving consumer confidence.