In February 2018, Heritage Federal Credit Union (FCU) launched a new program to encourage healthy competition, foster internal recognition, improve upon member service, member impact, and increase non-interest income with SWBC loan protection products—GAP, Payment Protection, and MMP.
With past short-term sales competitions growing stale, Heritage FCU identified a need for an ongoing program that would incentivize employees and create opportunities to receive additional acknowledgement. The solution? The SWBC Champions Club.
The requirements to be a part of the top tier champions club were set based on penetration percentages of protecting loans instead of loan volume—actual units over dollar amount. The quarterly percentage requirements are: 32% or greater on Debt Cancellation loans, 29% on GAP, and 9% on Major Mechanical Protection (MMP). For instance, out of 10 auto loans, protecting three of them with GAP would yield a 30% penetration rate.
The percentage requirements were generated based on what had been done in previous years plus the increase Heritage FCU wanted to see. A team member makes it into the club by accomplishing all three point-of-sale percentage categories, or by being the top performer in any one category.
Identifying a valuable incentive
Heritage FCU surveyed employees across all 10 branches to identify which incentives would encourage participation—recognition, money, or food—and with staggering results, decided to incorporate all three into the program.
Prizes for being a part of the top tier champions club include:
Recognition through a company-wide email
Certificate of achievement signed by Heritage FCU’s CEO
An extra $100 gift card to the top 3 performers
Invitation to SWBC Champions Club Recognition Dinner twice per year
"We wanted people to talk about their success and create stories around Champions—the certificates, the dinners—that would entice others to want to be a part of it. We see individuals stepping it up so that they can make club for the quarter.” –Brett Slayden, VP of Retail Delivery
We are the Champions: Creating stories and increasing participation
The SWBC Champions Club resets each quarter to spur consistent quarter-to-quarter performance. Out of 24 point-of-sale producers, the SWBC Champions Club has initiated an average of six champions per quarter since its inception. Excitement for the program has grown organically among employees and has spurred a spirit of friendly cross-branch competition.
Sharing positive results
In addition to penetration percentage increase, there has been an increase in actual numbers of products sold. In 2017 before the incentive program was implemented, Debt Cancellation was on 30% of loans. In 2018 after the program was in place, Heritage FCU saw an 8% increase in Debt Cancellation policies. Similarly, GAP saw a 5% increase, and MMP yielded a 3% increase, continuing to be an area of focus for improvement. In one year, Heritage Champions closed 60 more contracts per month on loan protection products.
The program’s success has continued into 2019 with more conversation and excitement around the benefit to both Heritage FCU employees and members.