APL FCU Cuts Costs and Clicks with WyTeller21, WyReceipts

Over 18 years of experience using Wycom solutions made one thing clear to APL Federal Credit Union: Wycom products work efficiently and effectively. So when the $270 million credit union sought new ways to streamline operations and reduce costs, it naturally turned to Wycom.

“We started with WyChecks and found the product to be incredibly reliable and indestructible,” says Michael Gough, Operations Manager. “And the service is so strong, I always feel like I’m the only customer Wycom has!”  That successful track record prompted APL to add WyTeller21 and WyReceipts in early 2009.

Scanning to Save
APL recognized the significant savings to be gained by leveraging Check 21. As Gough notes, “It’s much cheaper to process checks electronically and the funds are credited faster, which reduces NSF costs.” APL tellers initially scanned checks in batch mode in the back office periodically throughout the day – a process that created service issues.

“It took our tellers off the line and away from serving members,” he says. “Lines would build and members would be left waiting. When your members see three teller stations but only two are staffed, it creates a bad perception.”

APL saw WyTeller21 as the ideal solution. Using quiet, small-footprint scanners located right at their stations, tellers scan checks in seconds during the transaction.  “Because it happens so fast, it doesn’t add time and doesn’t hold up the member,” Gough explains. Tellers now have more time to provide superior service and cross-sell new products.

WyTeller21 can streamline credit union operations in many ways – by automatically confirming check totals, creating an electronic cash letter at day’s end, and forwarding check images to the Fed daily. It also eliminates the high costs of transporting paper checks by courier, allows for faster funds availability, and eliminates the need for MICR encoding and proofing equipment.

Given its high check volume, APL expects to avoid a great deal of lost teller time with WyTeller21.  “We believe we’ll save 55 man-hours a month – over 600 hours a year – by keeping our tellers on the line serving members,” Gough says. “Eventually, as our check volume grows, WyTeller21 may even help us avoid the cost of adding a part-time teller.”

Gough says this “incredibly user-friendly” product required almost no staff training. “It took our tellers just a few minutes to learn how to use it,” he says.

Fast, Flexible Receipts
Soon after the WyTeller21 implementation, APL called on Wycom again – this time for WyReceipts.  The credit union switched from another provider’s electronic receipts product to WyReceipts to gain greater ease of use and flexibility.

“We chose WyReceipts because it’s faster and simpler for our staff to use; it requires fewer clicks, which means transactions are done faster,” Gough says.  “We’ve also gained more options and more flexibility.” For instance, APL can easily customize messages on the receipt – a feature the previous provider didn’t support – and can choose whether to archive the receipt with or without graphics such as a logo.
The ease of implementing WyReceipts was another draw. “Our IT manager couldn’t believe how little effort it took to install,” Gough says.  And WyReceipts’ efficient design will save APL money in the long run.  “Compared to our previous vendor, the WyReceipts files are much smaller, which will save us a substantial amount of disk space.”

APL also benefits from the improved security of WyReceipts, using it to electronically capture the member’s signature along with the receipt. “For the member, it’s more secure to have the signature saved electronically than to have a hard copy of the signature on a form that someone could easily lift,” Gough says. “And our tellers can refer back to the electronic signature on future transactions to validate signatures.”