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Job Descriptions

Updated: 4 Big Reasons that Credit Unions are Revisiting Their Job Descriptions in 2020

By Jon Spratt on January, 17 2020
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Jon Spratt

Updated: September 2020

The continued overall growth of credit unions in North America, combined with the disruptions we've faced in 2020, is creating some major issues for HR teams. The most forward-thinking ones are getting out ahead of the challenges, though.

According to creditunions.com , “credit unions across the nation are competing like never before in a highly fluid job market.”

To keep up, talent management personnel in credit unions need to be lean, efficient and effective to compete against some of the huge players in the financial services industry, and outside of it.

And even prior to the global pandemic of 2020, all of this was adding up to a heavy demand on the shoulders of HR professionals in credit unions. Now, the pressure to be efficient is only amplified.

Great Tools Can Help Build Great Processes

Over the last year, we’ve seen a number of credit unions come onboard with our job description management + career pathing software tool, CompetencyCore.

Their interest and desire to improve their processes, starting with getting the right tools in place, has been based on 3 main motivators.

Based on the conversations we’ve been having, let’s take a deeper look why credit unions have been revisiting their job description process in 2020.

Let us know if these sound familiar.

Reason #1: Job descriptions are a resource drain on busy talent management personnel.

Credit unions continue to gain ground on traditional banks.

This growth trend, combined with continued acquisitions and mergers in the industries, is creating a heavy workload for HR and talent management personnel tasked with managing the growth of their organizations.

One of the fundamental building blocks of smart growth is getting good quality job descriptions in place – whether you’re writing them yourself, or empowering your hiring managers to do so.

But a shared drive, a few Google searches, and Microsoft Word aren’t cutting it anymore for HR pro’s in the credit union space.

That traditional process is way too time-consuming.

All that searching, copying and pasting; getting the right people to make their edits on the right documents; getting sign-off from managers and employees; and all the other boxes to check on the way to a finalized job description.

Beyond the process, there’s the quality of the job descriptions to consider.

Are they truly reflective of the responsibilities being asked of employees?

Are they easy to update over time, to reflect the evolving needs of their positions?

For those that are still “Frankensteining” things together, it adds up to a frustrating task – one that takes time and energy that you could be devoting to more strategic aspects of your job.

Want more info on how to do it? Here are a couple of free resources to get started with:


Reason #2: Employees want to know where they stand (and just as important, where they can go).

The competition for great talent is still fierce within the credit union sector.

Competitive salary and benefits help, but are not the only factor that needs to be considered to attract – and most importantly, retain – great talent.

The new wave of talent that's driving the growth of credit unions wants to know how they can grow in your organization. And if they can’t see that with you, it’s easy for them to look elsewhere.

(To wit: according to CreditUnions.com, 51% of workers were looking/applying for new jobs in 2018, and the annual turnover rate (pre-COVID) in the credit union industry is about 20%.)

Compounding the matter, credit unions aren't only competing against banks or other financial institutions for corporate staff. The rise and allure of the tech industry, startups, etc. mean that the best talent always has transferable skills and lucrative options available at their fingertips.

Giving employees viable, tangible career path options is more vital than ever before.

So, how can you build effective career pathing programs for your employees? Having the right career pathing software tools, which enable them to visually see their pathways to advancement, is crucial… and more accessible than ever.

Even still, the foundational requirement for great career pathing programs always comes back to having consistent, comparable job descriptions.

Here’s how one credit union in Florida did it – check out the post for tips for how you can do the same.

Or, check out this short video as Leah the bank teller leads you through how career pathing works in her organization:


Reason #3: Compliance is essential across the board… but especially in credit unions.

In our recent research report, “The State of Job Descriptions in 2020”, 43% of our respondents said that compliance was a driving factor in why they create job descriptions in the first place.

Undoubtedly, that number is higher in the financial services sector.

Compliant job descriptions require a consistent format, yes, and highly accurate content; but it’s about more than just that.

It’s also about the paper-trail behind it: who was involved in determining the requirements, how were they kept up-to-date, did employees acknowledge the accuracy of their job description.

There are a lot of moving parts to this compliance process, but mostly, it boils down to process.

And in financial institutions, the importance of compliance is only magnified; without the right systems in place, establishing a repeatable process for your organization is next to impossible.

Having tools that allow you to establish those compliance pieces is a major boon to credit unions, and one of the contributing factors to why we’ve seen such interest from the sector in our software over the past few years.

Reason #4: In the new world of work, clarity is king.


With many credit unions forced to move to a largely dispersed, remote workforce, talent management personnel have had to quickly adapt to the new reality.

Employees who used to work in offices are no longer able to walk a few steps over to a colleague’s desk to ask them a quick question; junior employees have less opportunities to pick the brains of their more senior colleagues; managers have largely shifted to more formalized check-ins, instead of having more regular, informal feedback loops on a daily basis.

In this new reality, clarity is king.

An updated record of an employee's official responsibilities can be a great tool to keep them focused on the most important tasks/responsibilities they need to carry out, bigger picture, to be successful in their roles.

To take it a step further, including core competencies and job-family competencies on your job descriptions is an ideal way to ensure buy-in on the key values and behaviors needed to drive your organization, and its teams, forward.


Use the power of AI to build better job descriptions, faster for a better future.

CompetencyCore by HRSG is built from the ground up to help busy HR professionals build better job descriptions faster, and use that valuable job description data to build highly effective, visual career pathing programs.

Here's a quick overview of how it works.




Ready to think about investing in your bank’s job description process? Check out the full overview of CompetencyCore’s job description software functionality here.



Learn More About Job Descriptions: 

Post last updated: January 6, 2021