Executives these days won’t say yes to just any compensation package. In fact, according to a January 2018 Credit Union Management magazine article and a new e-book by CUES and CUESolutions provider CUNA Mutual Group, Madison, Wis., executives with the skill sets credit unions need most may command a premium for their knowledge.
The article, “Talent Competition,” and the e-book, Non-Qualified Executive Benefits: A Guide for Credit Union Leadership, identify six key areas of executive expertise that credit unions may need to pay extra for when hiring:
- data analytics,
- millennials/Gen Z,
- business lending,
- strategic finance,
- IT leadership, and
- leadership ability that crosses functional areas.
So, what’s a credit union to do to compete for that top talent? The experts suggest four things:
- Offer competitive pay. Salary and traditional benefits are the ante—the base price credit unions have to pay up front just to be in the game of hiring great leaders.
- Put deferred compensation programs in place. Credit unions need to keep in mind that they are competing for talent with for-profit organizations. These corporations can offer stock options and other means of rewarding executives that are simply not available to credit unions. So having a supplemental executive retirement program—like a 457(b), 457(f) or split-dollar plan—can make credit unions more appealing employers.
- Invest in leadership development. According to the “Talent Competition” article, an executive benefits tool USAlliance Financial Credit Union has found useful is its organizational commitment to ongoing leadership development. Many of its executives have enrolled in CUES’ CEO Institute, which offers a broad perspective and prestige and also constitutes a three-year commitment to the institute and the credit union, according to CUES board member Kris VanBeek, CIE, CCE, CEO of the $1.3 billion credit union in Rye, N.Y.
- Extend executive benefits to more execs than just the CEO. According to the 2017 CUES Executive Compensation Survey, 44.1 percent of participating credit unions offer their CEOs 457(b) plans; almost 44 percent offer these plans to their CFOs; and 41 percent offer them to their CIOs.
The new e-book offers several in-depth case studies of how credit unions are attracting and retaining the executives they need for continued success. I’ll hope you’ll download it and take a look, then let me know how your efforts are working out in your credit union.
John Pembroke is president/CEO of CUES. Since joining the organization in March 2013 as chief operating officer, he has helped launch a new direction in CUES’ strategy, branding and culture. Pembroke has more than 20 years of experience in branding and financial services. He holds an MBA from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and is a member of the board of the Goodman Community Center, Madison, Wis.