HertSavers Credit Union is, like all credit unions, a cooperative owned by its members and we work to the International Cooperative Alliance’s four values and seven principles. Anyone living or working in Hertfordshire can join our credit union.
We are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. We have a set of rules which we maintain and which set out how we are managed.
Our day-to-day management is overseen by our volunteer Board, which is elected at an Annual General Meeting. Board members serve for three year terms. The roles and responsibilities of board members are defined and periodically updated. The board meets monthly. Every member is invited to the AGM which sets the direction for our credit union and decides on matters such as level of dividend. The Chair’s report which is presented to and agreed at the meeting sets out our financial and wider performance.
Our Chair is Philomena Johnson, who has been responsible for the overall direction of the credit union since 2016. The Treasurer is John Eames Petersen, who is a qualified accountant. The Credit Union Company Secretary is Fiona Plumridge. You can find full details of all board members under the “People” section.
The board undertakes regular training sessions to ensure individually and collectively they understand their responsibilities.
Credit Union Solutions (CUS) manage our back office. CUS are a workers’ cooperative and we have a three year contract with them which will be reviewed in 2019. CUS manage our office. This includes answering telephones, updating accounts, processing transfers onto debit cards, managing applications from new members and deciding on loans. They prepare our accounts and send off quarterly returns to the Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential Regulation Authority. Their staff are listed on their website.
Day-to-day lending decisions are made by CUS staff, under policies agreed by the HertSavers Board. The credit union board oversees CUS lending decisions, reviews arrears and agrees recovery actions if loans are not repaid. The board also decides on larger loans or, in the case of appeals, against lending decisions.
We try to agree common standards and contracts with other organisations (for example for our IT systems). When we buy goods and services we also aim to support other cooperatives or ethical businesses. We meet informally quarterly, and for specific training events. Our compliance officer (Graham Tomlin of CUS) advises the Board of changes to credit union rules which the board need to be aware of.
In addition we have our own external auditor, who audits our accounts each year.
We are members of ABCUL – the main trade association for credit unions in the UK