For the members
It all began in 1986 when Tony came into contact with one of the credit union’s oldest members, Collin Taylor, who talked to him about NZCU.
Auckland-born and bred, Tony investigated the cooperative thoroughly before joining and hasn’t looked back since.
“I have to say this seriously and honestly, NZCU Employees is my number one bank,” he says.
“In fact, I don’t deal with big banks at all.”
For Tony, the personable staff who know him by name and vice versa, can’t be beat.
“You come to the credit union and Ana or Wayne will have a talk with you,” he says.
“I like that. We have a discussion and we have a joke.”
As a loyal supporter of the credit union, Tony makes it no secret how much he tries to encourage his colleagues at Stresscrete, New Zealand’s pre-eminent pre-cast manufacturer.
But he adds people can be deterred by the name, saying those who don’t belong to a credit union or building societies look at that last word ‘union’ and think it’s involved with worker’s union.
“I really have to struggle to explain to them that this is a banking system that has all the protection of a normal bank, but it has no shareholders – you are the shareholder of this organisation.”
Tony takes the time to explain how NZCU Employees works for its members, as opposed to for-profit and how it means that all profits are returned to members through top interest rates on savings, low cost loans, and reasonable fees.
As someone who has a loan provider, savings, Christmas club and happily does his banking at NZCU Employees’ Penrose location on a regular basis, Tony only has one issue.
“The one real difficulty with the credit union, which I think the guys find when they’re out in places like Papakura, is that there is only one branch, open from 9-4pm Monday to Friday,” he says.
“The ideal situation would be to either have another branch in South Auckland, or we have a Saturday morning where the Penrose branch is open … say from 9-12pm.”
Tony says it’s to give the members in the likes of Papakura and Manukau the chance to come in and actually do their business for those three hours in the morning.
“It’s very hard to get here by 4 if you’re in Papakura … I can do it because I’m a senior guy, so I leave at 3pm to get here just before 4, but for the average guy to do it without getting in trouble or losing wages through losing hours, it’s a bit of a put off.”
But other than that, Tony can’t fault the credit union’s ‘for-the-members’ approach, naming each current staff and commending them.
“Seriously, Kona, Ana, Wayne, Sili, Neha and Bob are really nice, friendly people,” he says.
“When you walk into the bank and deal with them, it’s a service you just can’t beat that.”
If you would like to become a member of NZCU Employees contact us here