Text Messaging in the Drive-Thru

Credit Unions have long been known for their holistic approach to providing superior customer service, from offering competitive loan rates to welcoming lobby experiences. 

However, in the current shelter-at-home environment, providing that extra level of personalized service is challenging, particularly with many employees working from home, and branches offering mobile-only and drive-through options. Without onsite staff being available during a member visit, the traditional benefits of being a Credit Union member are easily compromised; it’s critical, therefore, to ensure access to secure, compliant and personalized texting. Members and Credit Unions can maintain their valued relationships in a safe, efficient manner, cultivating meaningful connections, even while exercising social distancing protocols.

Drive-thru transactions actually promote the adherence to public health measures that require distancing. Text Messaging between members and tellers at the drive-thru can quickly resolve requests and questions, including routing numbers, hours, rates, loan applications, etc. According to research published in Forbes, most people take only 90 seconds to respond to a Text Message. Response time is important, but so is accuracy: Text templates assist tellers in providing answers more efficiently than through face-to-face communication. 

For example, a member needs to deposit cash and make a few other transactions at her local Credit Union. She arrives at the drive thru to withdraw funds and enters a number of short commands, such as BAL for primary account balance and TRANS to transfer funds. The teller receives written instruction via Text Message to withdraw and deposit exact amounts, and there is a record of the request. While the member is waiting, she texts a question about her auto loan. The teller receives an instant alert that another text has been sent, and he reviews all of the customer’s texts before finalizing the transaction. In addition, because some requests, such as balance and transfers, can be automatically completed, the teller spends less time on the transaction, offers personalized information about the auto loan and ultimately achieves great customer throughput. 


Credit Union employees using Eltropy’s world class Text Messaging solution have unique usernames and passwords to access the platform. Eltropy also supports text-based Two-Factor Authentication for additional security. Texts identify accounts only by their last four digits or by nicknames a customer provides. Accounts are set up to accept commands only from the phone numbers that have been registered. Members can feel assured that their text transactions are safe and accurate, and that there is a record of their request. 

Texts are noticed quickly and are usually acted upon just as fast by both employees and members. They provide on-going, personal communication, even at a time when the public is required to maintain distance. 

Texting is an important tool that enables Credit Unions to not only remain in touch with members but also to underscore their commitment to top-notch, one-to-one service.

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by Team Eltropy

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