WHEN it comes to the Bananacoast Credit Union (BCU), the dollars spent in the community stay in the community.
That's the bonus of the new BCU call centre, BC Direct, which is keeping its business local.
BCU is the only local business that services its clients with its own local call centre. With so many call centres going off shore to countries like India, BCU has decided to keep its business local and maintain its personal contact with its members.
"Offshore call centres can lose contact with their clients. Our strength is that we are locals and our staff can stay in touch with members," Call Centre manager Shouanette Stolz said.
With 60,000 members, BCU has a strong presence in the community and with an average of 6000 to 8000 calls per month, members are able to have a personal service with members knowing that they are talking to local people.
The call centre has been operating in various stages for a number of years but has expanded significantly in the last 12 months when demand for service increased.
"A lot of the people who work here have come from the branches so they have worked in the Credit Union locally for years," Ms Stolz added.
"Many members can't access branches regularly so this service is essential. When a member calls BCU, the average waiting time is under 30 seconds. And they can speak directly to a member service representative."
BCU has 20 branches between Port Macquarie, Tweed Heads South and Dorrigo and as membership grows, members expect a branch presence.
BCU began in 1970 when a group of banana growers couldn't get lending from banks, thus forming the Credit Union at the Pub With No Beer.