Staying compliant with Community Reinvestment Act requirements is crucial to the health and success of all banks. But why stop at simply meeting a standard when exceeding requirements can benefit your institution from a business perspective? By improving your CRA performance, you not only remain compliant, but can also take advantage of a growth opportunity in the new year.

Here are 10 tips for better CRA performance in 2017:

  1. Stay ahead of the curve. Standards for complying with CRA requirements are going up, so now is the time to position yourself to exceed expectations.
  2. Prioritize financial education. Investing in financial education for students and adults – especially underbanked communities – can have a big return for financial institutions by bringing in new customers and creating additional customer loyalty.
  3. Make sure you measure. You want to be able to prove your initiatives are working. Setting measurable outcomes is the best way to do this – and it makes it easy for your CRA evaluator, as well.
  4. Interact. Use technology to engage with your target audiences – anywhere, and any time – through various mediums, including videos, games, apps, and others.
  5. Test before and after. To determine if your education initiatives are effective, test participants’ financial literacy both before and after each course. This also makes it easy to demonstrate success to your CRA evaluator.
  6. Gather valuable data. Make sure the data from your measurable outcomes and results is readily available for when regulators ask. The more information, the better.
  7. Don’t be afraid to go digital. Investing in online courses allows you to reach many more learners at a lower cost – anywhere, any time. Not only is interactive online financial education more scalable than classroom education, but it also has a higher return on investment.
  8. Don’t wait. Making improvements to your CRA program now means you won’t have to scramble after receiving a “Needs Improvement” rating.
  9. Make it modern. More and more, people are spending their time on mobile devices. Meet audience demand by ensuring your program is optimized to stay with the times.
  10. Maximize your return. Giving back to the community through effective financial education programs also creates brand loyalty and attracts new customers – that way, everyone wins.

Technology has made it easier than ever before to reach new audiences and to measure program effectiveness. Learn more about how EVERFI can help you with CRA performance by downloading EVERFI’s guide, 10 Big Ideas to Improve Your CRA Outcomes.