Four reasons why evaluating your digital technology should be on your Strategic Planning Agenda


Kelly Flynn |

As we enter the strategic planning and budgeting season, evaluating your digital technology offerings and contract pricing must be on your agenda. Modernizing your tech stack will ensure operational efficiencies, account holder satisfaction, and overall business growth.

Here are four reasons why:

1. Your growth strategies must include modernizing your digital capabilities

Aligning your technology with your growth strategies is a pivotal step towards enhancing your account holders’ experience. It is important to conduct a thorough analysis of your existing technologies, evaluating their effectiveness and efficiency. This assessment will enable you to pinpoint opportunities for streamlining workflows, automating tasks, and ultimately, improving the overall user experience.

When evaluating your tech stack, consider several key factors, including performance, scalability, security, and alignment with your strategic goals. Ask yourself whether your current technologies have the capacity to scale alongside your future growth trajectory and if they can seamlessly support the introduction of new products or services in line with your strategic plans.

Consider factors like ease of use, accessibility, and reliability from a consumer’s perspective. It is worth noting that a robust and user-friendly tech stack has the potential to not only elevate account holder satisfaction but also drive substantial growth.

2. A thorough contract pricing evaluation can maximize savings

Evaluate contract pricing to uncover potential cost-saving opportunities. This step involves a comprehensive examination of the cost-effectiveness and value proposition of each contractual agreement. Consider not only the initial contract cost but also the total cost of ownership, which encompasses ongoing expenses such as maintenance, support, and upgrades. Keep an eye out for unnecessary services or platforms your financial institution might be paying for but not utilizing.

3. Protection and performance can be ensured via favorable contract terms and SLAs

Thoroughly analyze the contract terms and Service Level Agreements (SLAs) to safeguard your interests and ensure optimal performance. Review the specifics of each contract to verify they align with current and future needs and regulatory requirements.

Are there clauses that limit your flexibility or impose additional costs? Do the contracts specify key elements such as deconversion costs, CPI adjustments, and auto-renewal language?

When assessing SLAs ensure that they clearly define the level of service, performance standards, and remedies or penalties for service providers failing to meet their commitments. This evaluation will guarantee that your technology contracts not only deliver cost-effectiveness but also offer the performance, reliability, and security your financial institution requires.

4. Striking the balance between cost and value

Maintaining a balance between cost and value is paramount to ensure that your technology investment yields long-term benefits. While cost-cutting might seem attractive, it should not compromise the overall value. Investing in the right technology, even if the upfront cost is higher, can result in improved efficiency, heightened service satisfaction, and revenue growth. The expense becomes justified by the tangible benefits it brings.

Benefits of engaging external consultants

Bringing in external consultants for your technology contract assessment offers numerous advantages. Leveraging their expertise in industry standards, pricing, and service levels, consultants can objectively evaluate your contracts. They are adept at identifying hidden costs or services that internal biases or lack of knowledge may cause you to overlook. Additionally, consultants can provide best practices based on their experience with similar institutions, aiding in negotiations for better terms or finding more suitable service providers. Serving as an extension of your team, their knowledge and expertise can lead to substantial savings, improved service levels, and a more strategic alignment of your technology with your objectives.

Optimal timing for tech stack and contract assessment

The strategic planning and budgeting season presents the perfect opportunity for your community bank or credit union to evaluate its tech stack and contract pricing. Doing so ensures effective resource utilization, competitiveness, and readiness for growth.

For more insights into trends in digital transformation and ways to offset expenses, watch the on-demand webinar, “Uncover hidden treasure in your vendor contracts.”

To learn more about creating a successful digital transformation plan or how to reduce your contract expenses, contact the experts at ADVANTAGE, powered by JMFA to get started.


For decades, ADVANTAGE has helped community banks and credit unions align their strategic plans with vendors, optimize contract terms and pricing, and secure the most favorable terms and pricing in their complex contracts. We continue to be the most trusted name in the industry.


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