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Next Generation Technology

The Importance of Improving Your Accountholders’ Financial Health

Shanon McLachlan
Feb 14, 2023

How Jack Henry™ is helping you improve your accountholders financial well-being

The U.S. is facing a financial health crisis.

For the first time since 2018, the U.S. percentage of people considered financially healthy decreased from 34% in 2021 to 31% in 2022[1]. Additionally, two-thirds of Americans are considered “financially coping” or “financially vulnerable.”[2] This means Americans struggle to spend, save, borrow, or plan in ways that allow them to be resilient and seize opportunities.

See how Jack Henry is working to help you fight the U.S. financial health crisis and all we plan to do moving forward.

CU Build

This summer, our Jack Henry credit union community joined CU Build for its second annual build-a-thon.

CU Build’s mission is to spark innovation, cultivate learning, and foster development within the credit union community. This year, CU Build brought together 56 industry professionals from more than 20 credit unions across the U.S. with the goal of developing game-changing solutions to address key business challenges – including financial health.

Jack Henry is proud to collaborate with CU Build and help you build a stronger financial future for your members.

There’s power in bringing together individuals of varying skill sets to solve real-life challenges, share knowledge, and leverage the cooperative principles of the credit union community to develop innovative solutions.

Jack Henry Connect 2022

Jack Henry Connect 2022 was bigger and better than ever.

For the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic, bank and credit union clients joined us in person at our annual client conference – Jack Henry Connect – for an invigorating four days of in-depth conversations, informative sessions, and networking.

One common theme at Jack Henry Connect centered around financial health.

In fact, the Financial Health Network hosted three workshops focused on understanding the needs of the financially coping and vulnerable, best practices for financial management, and how to build your financial health strategy.

In addition to the financial health sessions offered at Jack Henry Connect, we held an event called the Step into Financial Health Challenge – designed to motivate attendees to track and submit how many steps they took during the event.

Throughout the week, millions of steps were tracked – resulting in Jack Henry donating $10,000 to the Financial Health Network to support their continued efforts to improve financial health for all.

Attendees displayed an impressive commitment to building awareness around the U.S. financial health crisis – placing an even greater emphasis on Jack Henry’s mission.

In addition to our membership and support of the Financial Health Network, Jack Henry proudly supports CUNA as a dedicated Associate Business Member and the National Credit Union Foundation as a Bronze Supporter.

The National Credit Union Foundation is a charitable organization focused on improving the financial lives of members through credit unions. Over the last fifteen years, the foundation has awarded over $36 million worth of grants to help credit unions better serve their members and improve their financial health.

Jack Henry Financial Institutions in Action

 As a financial institution, you play a key role in mitigating the financial health crisis in the communities you serve.

Developing and implementing strategies to guide the financial well-being of your members is the first step to addressing the financial health crisis we face today. It’s also a significant and largely untapped opportunity for you to stand out in a crowded market by putting your accountholders at the forefront of your operations.

This past year, I had the opportunity to travel and meet with many of you at your financial institutions and industry events.

While so many incredible stories were shared, one common theme stood out – improving the financial health of accountholders.

From educational programs to internships, apprenticeships, and more, our bank and credit union communities are working hard to move the needle when it comes to improving the financial health of Americans.

One example is Addition Financial Credit Union, located in Lake Mary, Florida.

Addition Financial Credit Union launched its High School Branch Program – a financial health education program for local high schools designed to introduce the importance of healthy financial management skills to young people. The credit union provides full training to high school students and prepares students to fully staff and run Addition Financial Credit Unions’ high school branches – all of which are located on participating high school campuses.

Through this program, Addition Financial Credit Union helps students develop a better understanding of how financial institutions operate as well as gain real-world work experience and financial health best practices. Some student tellers have even become full-time Addition Financial Credit Union team members upon completing their education.

As our bank and credit union communities continue to make great strides in educating our youth – you’ve inspired Jack Henry to do the same.

To support you and our mission to empower people and financial institutions to gain the financial freedom to move forward, Jack Henry established an apprenticeship program for STEM students working on Quality Assurance (QU) Automation. We currently have three high school students enrolled in the program and plan to offer more students the opportunity to join in the coming year.

Fighting Financial Fragmentation

In a recent press release, Jack Henry announced our new relationship with Mastercard®.

Together, we’re enabling financial institutions to provide accountholders with the ability to securely view all their financial accounts – within and outside of their primary financial institution. This is a huge step toward fighting financial fragmentation, which is largely responsible for the financial health crisis we face today.

In fact, accountholders today have between 20 to 30 financial relationships spanning the financial services spectrum – making it nearly impossible for accountholders to see a full, 360-degree view of their finances.

Without a holistic understanding of their finances, accountholders become disconnected from their financial position, struggle to illuminate and adjust spending habits and fail to recognize what steps they can take to improve their financial health.

Our relationship with Mastercard is one of the many steps Jack Henry is taking to strengthen connections between people and their financial institutions through technology and services that reduce the barriers to financial health.

Looking Ahead

As we look forward to all 2023 has in store, Jack Henry remains committed to advocating for positive change, co-creating innovative solutions with our bank and credit union communities, and building stronger connections between you and your accountholders to overcome the obstacles to financial health.

Together, we’re making a difference.

Discover new possibilities with Jack Henry.

[1] Andrew DunnAndrew WarrenNecati Celik, and Wanjira Chege. Financial Health Pulse® 2022 U.S. Trends Report, Financial Health Network, accessed November 14, 2022.

[2] Andrew Dunn, Jess McKayNecati Celik, and Thea Garon. Financial Health Pulse® 2021 U.S. Trends Report, Financial Health Network, accessed November 14, 2022.

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