A Message from Our President/CEO
I am thrilled to share with you that in this first quarter of 2019 your credit union has surpassed $680 million in assets and over 58,000 members. With committed members like you recognizing the value we bring every day, this cooperative partnership continues to bolster Connex as an industry leader in CT. I am proud to share with you that Connex Credit Union was recently named one of the 50 top performing credit unions nationally for 2018 by S&P Global Market Intelligence, reflecting a balance of strong asset and member growth combined with efficiency and sound lending results.
Connex continues to lend to its members at a record pace, remaining in the top 5% of credit unions nationally in terms of loan growth to its members. We have done such a great job that we need a lot more new member deposits to keep pace! You may have noticed that we have been running various CD and Money Market specials, and they provide new and existing members with extremely competitive high-interest rates over various terms that can really boost your savings. Please take advantage of these lucrative specials as quickly as you see them announced because they may not be around for long.
After a hugely successful five years, I am proud to announce that our ConneXfactor financial fitness competition has begun its 6th year. ConneXfactor embodies our commitment to customer advocacy and improving the lives of our members... one member at a time.
Almost 100 members have applied for their chance to win $5,000 in prizes. Our thorough selection process is almost complete and we soon will release the names of the five contestants chosen to work closely with their Financial Coaches over the next six months to see who can improve their fiscal condition the most. What particularly excites me about ConneXfactor is that we can all learn something from each of the contestants, as you don’t have to be a participant to benefit from the ConneXfactor competition. As in the past, you can follow the progress of our contestants on our blog at connexfactor.org as well as view helpful financial tips.
As a member, you too can also meet with one of our Financial Advocates located in each branch, who will work with you to understand your goals, identify your financial needs, and provide solutions to improve your financial life.
Supporting Our Community
Our Coins-for-Change program supports local charities by donating the fees collected at our coin-cashing machines. For the first quarter of 2019, we provided more than $3,000 to four deserving organizations including Lakewood-Trumbull YMCA, West Haven Emergency Assistance Taskforce, New Haven Reads, and Lydia’s Legacy Memorial Cancer Fund. Along with our sponsorship with WPLR, Connex donated 35,000 diapers to The Diaper Bank in this year’s Shamrock & Roll 5k Road Race, which was held on March 4th.
Our highly recognized Financial Literacy workshops continue this year beginning with First-Time Home Buyers and How to Create a Budget. These workshops are free to members and non-members and provide valuable information on a variety of topics. Visit our website for upcoming workshops and to register.
Recognition & Awards
MemberXP awarded Connex Credit Union “Best of the Best” credit union in member experience for 2018. MemberXP administers member experience measurement and improvement programs for more than 100 credit unions in North America. This prestigious award is given to an elite group of high-performing credit unions. This recognition was based on the combined criteria of our high Member Effort Score and our high Net Promoter Score, with only 7% of credit unions meeting these criteria nationally. Connex was awarded “Best of the Best” designation by providing our members with excellent Lending Opening experiences.
In January, Connex was honored with two Service Industry Advertising Awards, which honor achievement in the service industry, in our case, financial services. A group of industry specialists judged our submissions based on creativity, execution, impact, technology, application, and innovation. Connex received “Gold” in the “Monroe, Grand Opening Materials”, Integrated Marketing Campaign, and “Bronze” for the "ConneXfactor Video," Special Video campaign.
Bauer Financial, the nation’s leading independent bank and credit union rating and research firm, once again designated Connex Credit Union as a Five Star “Superior” organization. This prestigious honor is reserved for financial institutions excelling in capital, asset quality, profitability, and other fiscal areas. Connex has received this recognition annually since 1995.
Investing in Our Younger Members
We are continuing to invest in our younger members by offering $6,000 in scholarships to college-bound students. We’re awarding three scholarships next month – the $2,000 Nicolas G. Hackett Memorial Scholarship; the $2,000 John R. Edwards Community Involvement Scholarship; and the $2,000 Arthur B. Haesche Memorial Scholarship. These are awarded to deserving student members who can use the money toward tuition or other school-related expenses. While the deadline to apply for this year has just passed, I encourage you to look out for our announcements in the coming year if you or a member of your family can take advantage of this member-exclusive program. I will keep you posted on the winners after their names are announced.
Our Members Come First
Part of our annual Net Promoter Survey (NPS) includes the opportunity for you to tell us what changes you would like us to consider. One of the top responses over the years was a desire to have a branch in Fairfield County. We listened and opened our new full-service branch in Monroe, CT last August, complete with walk-up and drive-up ATMs. Another member request was for expanded hours, and last year we extended teller availability from 7AM to 7PM, Monday – Friday, and 8AM to 1PM on Saturday’s with our ITMs (Interactive Teller Machines). With our ITM, you can perform almost all of the lobby teller transaction with a live teller by means of a video screen. These transactions include deposits, withdrawals, transfers, loan payments and most shared branching transactions. We believe this exchange is the reason you continue to rate us high in NPS scores, recently having scored a 71, which is best-in-class in our industry. We will continue to listen to you and always strive to improve our services to you.
Our members are the backbone of Connex, and the reason we exist. As part of our mission, “Improving the lives of our members… One member at a time”, we also try and focus on personally working with each member to better understand your financial goals and offer attainable solutions that really make a difference. As a not-for-profit financial cooperative, profits are returned to you, our members, in the form of improved services, lower rate loans, and higher deposit rates. Our Financial Advocates are here to help you find the best money-saving loan or highest dividend deposit product. We know we are delivering on these promises as our members have been extremely active in all areas of our offerings, including telling us where we are doing great and where we can improve. If you haven’t taken the time to review your financial situation with one of our Financial Advocates, maybe 2019 is the year to do it. We are here to help.
The 2019 Connex Annual Meeting will occur at the Best Western Plus in North Haven on Friday, April 26th at 11 a.m. This assembly allows us to highlight the successes of 2018 and discuss how they will be leveraged as we plan for the future. We will officially record the newly elected Directors as part of the business meeting, and we will then announce the students receiving our annual scholarships. If you’d like to attend, you can register for this event on our website.
As we close out the first quarter of 2019, our credit union has already experienced much success in the first three months and it is evident already that we are on track for another successful year – and when we succeed, all of our members prosper. Thank you for your continued dedication to Connex and we look forward to working with you on your path to financial success throughout the rest of 2019.
Very Truly Yours,
Connex Credit Union