Looking back, 2022 was another distinctive year. While it was a year that brought significant change and uncertainty, it also created opportunities for Central 1 to reset, enhance and expand our offerings to better serve our members and clients, and continue our work towards our purpose of enabling a thriving credit union system.
Across the broader financial services sector, we worked diligently to keep up with an unpredictable economy and respond to changing tactics from cyber criminals. All while working hard to stay relevant to our members and clients and, ultimately, the Canadian consumer, offering services and tools that help them navigate the rapidly changing world.
Like many similar financial organizations, part of our 2022 financial story reflects the challenging market conditions which resulted in unrealized losses on our fixed income investments. As we responded to these external factors, we kept focused on our core operations of serving our clients and members. This led to stable performance in our core operations and revenue sources like interest margin, which remained strong.
Reflecting on the year, I am most proud of how the Central 1 team rose to the occasion to support our members and clients throughout the year. There’s no question – our strength as an organization is rooted in how we show up to support our clients and members whether times are good or bad.
I’m also proud that we achieved full compliance, deployed technology and met all testing requirements to support Lynx and the organization’s readiness to meet the start of the global ISO 20022 migration for cross-border payments. Another highlight was the launch of the Treasury Knowledge Centre, the first-of-its-kind for Canadian credit unions, an online hub full of timely and helpful analysis, commentary, information and educational training resources for our members and clients. And it was wonderful to deliver our first in-person Momentum Conference since 2019 to provide an opportunity for our members and clients to connect, learn and access knowledge to collectively help us navigate the future of the financial services industry.
Fortifying our foundation & building for tomorrow
A significant focus for us in 2022 was to ensure the foundations of our business and the products and services we provide for our members are solid. This involved listening deeply to what our clients and members were telling us, reflecting on what we are striving to do as an organization and asking ourselves some tough questions around how we’re set up to do that.
At the core of it all is providing stable support and products our clients and members can rely on. These are the foundations that give us the ability to enhance our offerings, innovate and capitalize on opportunities in the future. And we need to be able to do both of those things in order to enable our clients to thrive.
We can’t ignore the challenges we faced when it comes to the reliability of our technology services for our members and clients. Delivering products and services they can count on is table stakes for Central 1 and we’re committed to making sure that shines through in everything we do. You can expect our continued focus on improving in these areas in 2023.
To ensure our organization is well-equipped to best serve our members and clients and anticipate their needs, we looked internally and made some key changes.
- We established a program to drive improvements to our product and service reliability and took steps to deliver a better client experience.
- We refined our organizational structure to provide focus and accountability for our teams, enabling them to prioritize our clients’ and members’ needs.
- We further strengthened our executive leadership team with the addition of deeply experienced leaders whose diverse perspectives will help us make thoughtful decisions.
- We refreshed our values as an organization to better align our work to our purpose and the future needs of our members, clients and the credit union system as a whole.
These changes set us up to listen to our members and clients and to anticipate and prepare for their future needs.
Rooting our strategy in client & member needs
While setting foundations was a priority for us throughout 2022, so too was looking ahead and planning for our future. We revisited our corporate strategy and established a plan to focus our efforts and strive for purpose-driven outcomes over the next three years.
Through three main areas, this strategy prioritizes the projects and issues most important for Central 1 members and clients.
Strengthening our offerings
We are focused on how our products, services and solutions are meeting the system’s evolving needs and ensuring our solutions enable the functions essential to a thriving financial institution today and in the future.
We are intentional, taking a system-first approach to engage stakeholders, deliver value and foster resilience of the credit union system.
Operating reliably & effectively
We provide secure and dependable services to our clients, deploying resources appropriately and ensuring our efforts drive performance to make Central 1 an inspiring and inclusive place to work.
Looking to 2023
As we move into 2023, we are excited to further build upon the foundational work done last year and deliver enhanced value to our client businesses who serve their customers. Aligned with the vision set in our strategy, we are focused on delivering the next stages of multi-year priority initiatives including digital banking innovation, improved system reliability and performance, payments modernization and treasury advisory services.
By doing so, we will deliver value grounded in long-term resilience and achieve sustained improvements in our performance through a culture focused on being forward-looking, delivering performance excellence, collaborating with our members and partners, and living our values as part of the credit union community.
That requires strength, stability and discipline – and I am confident we have the talent, expertise and technology to do just that.
No matter what the year brings, Central 1 remains committed to our purpose of supporting and enabling our members and clients to thrive, and we will be there for them every step of the way.
President and CEO
Central 1 Credit Union