In a rapidly shifting global marketplace where consumers have grown accustomed to seamless digital consumer experiences in almost every interaction, it is impossible not to feel the pressure to keep up. While credit unions are known for a much broader set of benefits than just digital experiences, it has become a critical part of their ability to compete for the acquisition and retention of members.
Central 1 sees this. In response, we are pleased to offer access to Forge, our digital banking platform that puts the control in the hands of our clients, providing them with the ability to design and take ownership of their digital offerings. With Forge, clients have access to public website, mobile banking app and online banking capabilities.
In 2022, we completed the migration of Forge to rely more on Central 1’s proven and proprietary digital banking technologies. We also prioritized enhancing our product management and program delivery expertise that power Forge and heightened our focus on continuous improvement of our overall system reliability and resilience.
Within the past year, we also advanced Forge Community, our platform that enables clients to enhance their unique instances of Forge with third-party capabilities. Successfully piloted in 2022, Forge Community provides our clients with a way to quickly deploy enhanced digital banking experiences for their members and customers through fintech and ecosystem partnerships. A key feature of the platform is our Open Innovation API which, if clients allow, enables a fintech to retrieve end-user/member data to power and personalize their solutions.
In 2023, Forge Community will become more broadly available to our clients with an exciting list of growing partners focused on delivering solutions around personal finance, account and mortgage origination, digital servicing and more. Contributors to Forge Community can range from a next-generation personal finance fintech to a client that can share their digital experiences with the broader credit union and client ecosystem.
We know we’re stronger when we work together with our clients to learn and grow. Forge Community is just one powerful example of that. In addition to client webinars, in 2022, we also formed the Digital Experience Council, a collaboration between Central 1 and our digital clients. This 13-member council is designed to ensure that client voices are represented as Central 1 continues to evolve its digital products and strategies.
In the highly competitive financial services sector, our offerings must enable our clients to meet their members’ and customers’ growing and changing demands. And we can’t do it alone. Credit union voices will continue to be a critical component of a mutually successful digital products strategy for the credit union system now and into the future.