11 January 2021, 11:48
The rollout of our new IT system - which was a major change - has been completed. Some things had to be set up for the first time earlier in the week which took a long time and required our staff to work late into the night every day. These initial set up processes, coupled with the large backlog of benefits payments from the public holidays, meant that we struggled to process transfers at the start of the week. By Friday, transfers were being processed on the same morning. We still expect a few glitches as we get to grips with the new system but don't anticipate any significant delays or problems for any Members.
We will open our phone lines from 10am to 4pm Monday to Friday from today. Members can use our website at any time to ask a question, request a balance and so on, so please do that if you can.
We will be introducing a new online system to allow Members to check their balance online at any time.
Finally, we'd like to thank the many dozens of Members who took a minute or two to contact us and thank us for the work we do to help Members. We've also had great feedback about our new loans system - especially about how much quicker and easier it is. We'll keep working hard in 2021 and we look forward to introducing more improvements for Members during the year.
04 January 2021, 16:50
Firstly, we'd like to wish all of our Members a happy, healthy and prosperous 2021. Unfortunately, the country is off to a difficult start with the Scottish Government placing Scotland into lockdown from midnight tonight for the month of January. We will continue to operate as we have been over recent months - encouraging Members to use our website as much as possible (it's easier, quicker and safer for everybody), phone if you need to (for updates on loan applications please use the link you were sent - it works 24 hours a day) and still making cash appointments for branches available where absolutely necessary (you must make an appointment in advance).
18 December 2020, 10:20
We will be closed for the bank holidays during the festive period (Friday 25 and Monday 28 December, and Friday 01 and Monday 04 January). Members can continue to use our online request system, at any time, and we'll process requests just as soon as we can.
10 November 2020, 11:09
We want to advise Members that we've taken the decision to disable the voicemail/message system on our main telephone line.
This was a difficult decision to reach because some Members leave messages out of hours or when we're really busy. However, most of the messages did not contain sufficient information for us to know who the Member is and what they needed us to do. Some messages were also abusive in nature and that's just not acceptable (luckily we know that the vast majority of Members appreciate that we are working hard on their behalf).
It could take us a lot of time to identify Members from voicemails, having to call back several times in a lot of cases and many voicemails were unable to be progressed as a result. This means that those Members believed they had left us a clear instruction but we simply could not act on it. This will lead to significant frustration or disappointment for the Member and disappointment for us that we couldn't help.
Most phone calls we get are requests for updates on loan applications. We're getting dozens and dozens of calls every day which means we have to stop processing loans to deal with the enquiries - resulting in delays to decisions. We need to prioritise assessing loan applications - that's what most of our Members expect of us. The latest status of a loan application can be viewed on our website, using the link you were sent when you submitted your application. This will always show the latest status and shows exactly the information our staff are able to give over the telephone. There is no additional benefit to speaking to us over the phone.
Members can get in touch with us in many ways, including by phone where necessary - we are currently opening our phone lines between and 10 and 11am and again between 2 and 3pm. However, it is always quicker and better to use our website request system or to e-mail us. You can check the status of your loan application using the link that we e-mailed to you when you submitted your loan.
06 November 2020, 16:12
Due to the continuing public health challenges and in the face of a significant increase in loan applications we are limiting drop-in access to our branches and telephone lines. We've put additional information on our website, provided online balance requests, transfer requests and updates on loan applications (using the link you are sent when you apply for a loan).
Telephone lines will be staffed between 10 and 11am and again between 2 and 3pm. You can e-mail us at any time. Members can make appointments to come into branches where necessary. We will continue to do what we can to support Members but we must do so safely and do what we can to process the large number of loan applications that Members are submitting. We apologise if this causes any inconvenience. We appreciate your patience and support as we work hard to help Members.
18 September 2020, 14:33
Members will know that we apply an administration fee each year for all adult Member accounts. This is in our Rule Book and is voted for by our Members. Members voted for an Annual Administration Fee of £5.00 to be applied. We are therefore required, under our Rules, to apply this charge to all adult Member accounts. This will happen at the start of October 2020.
12 August 2020, 18:42
We'd like to apologise to Members for some of the delays they may have experienced on Wednesday 12 August. The BT Exchange issues in Edinburgh caused by extreme weather overnight caused disruption to around 100,000 broadband connections in Scotland, including ours. We also suffered power outages at our main office. We had no access to our systems for the first few hours and invoked our contingency arrangements, setting up a temporary office in a secure location. This allowed us to process payments, answer calls and deal with Member requests. Our main office is fully connected again and we've moved back to normal operational arrangements. We are now fully up and running. Once again, we are sorry about any inconvenience this may have caused.
12 August 2020, 11:42
We have invoked our contingency arrangements and have established a temporary office location, with phones and full computer systems in a secure location elsewhere in Fife. We are now answering calls and processing payments. Please bear with us, the phone lines are busy and we're working hard to catch up and help as many Members as we can.
12 August 2020, 09:05
We've experienced some significant issues as a result of the extreme weather overnight. We don't have power to our main office and we have no phones or computer networks in both branches. We are unable to connect to the bank, issue payments or deal with most Member enquiries right now. We are working hard with our IT suppliers to resolve these issues as quickly as we can. Please bear with us whilst we try to get things up and running again.
21 July 2020
Our Glenrothes branch will now be open to all Members 10am to 2pm, Monday to Friday (no need to make an appointment). We've had to limit the number of Members that can come in at any one time, we've made antibacterial hand gel available and ask Members to support us in our efforts to keep Members and our staff safe.
Our Methilhill branch remains closed but our appointment system is still in place for those Members that need to come and see us and can't make it to Glenrothes.
20 July 2020
We are delighted to announce that Members can now apply for a loan directly on our website. There's no paperwork, no dropping off or posting forms, no delays to get documents printed, signed or returned! Everything is done online - all you need is an e-mail address and access to a modern web browser (it works on most smartphones, tablets and almost every laptop or computer). You can start the application, save it and then come back and complete it later. You can ask for help to complete it too. This system will result in fewer delays, it won't allow you to submit it with things missing and you can check on progress after you've submitted it.
We are able to process loans more quickly with this new system. If we approve your loan, we will send you a Loan Agreement by e-mail which you can sign electronically. In theory, after we have assessed your application, we can offer you a loan and you can legally and securely agree to it in just a few minutes from wherever you can get internet access. You can still complete a paper form if you prefer, but it will take longer to process and involve visiting a branch and/or posting things.
04 July 2020
We have updated our Lending Policy. This policy governs how we will provide loans to Members - setting out things like eligibility, how applications can be received, how they will be assessed and our latest interest rates for our various loan products. It is designed to be an internal document for staff to follow, but we have chosen to publish it on our website for transparency. If you have any questions about it, please contact us. A key change for Members to note is that the compulsory saving amount has been increased to £10 per month. This is good practice and is designed to help Members to save and to reduce the risk of falling behind on loan repayments.
01 July 2020
As part of our commitment to continuous improvement, we've been busy reviewing all aspects of how we provide loans. We are introducing changes to how Members can apply for loans to make the overall process quicker and clearer for everybody. We have introduced a new Loan Application Form, Guidance Notes on how to complete the form and a new Loan Agreement which is much clearer and uses straightforward language. All of these will start to be used from Monday 06 July. We can still accept loan applications on the old form, but the information you supply will be transffered by us to a new form and we will contact you for the additional information not on the old form.
26 May 2020
We are carefully reviewing guidance from the UK Government and Scottish Government, as well as working with fellow credit unions to plan how we can safely re-open brances and access points in the coming weeks. The safety of our staff, volunteers and members will take absolute priority. We will keep our website and Facebook page updated, so please check back regularly.
25 May 2020
Members are reminded to book their place at our 'virtual' AGM to be held on Thursday 28 May 2020 at 1430hrs.
11 May 2020
Our Annual General Meeting will be held on Thursday 28 May 2020 at 1430hrs using Zoom technology - so you can join from your home. This is an opportunity for our members to have a say in the running of their community bank. To find out more and to book your free place please click here.
07 May 2020
We've been offering members the chance to win an iPad just by completing an online form to make sure we have the most up to date details for our members. We have extended the deadline for this to 30 May 2020 - click here to submit your up to date details and be entered into the free prize draw (terms and conditions apply)
01 May 2020
Members are advised that Friday 08 May is a UK public holiday to observe the 75th anniversary of VE day. We will be closed and any transfers due to take place on 08 May will be processed on Thursday 07 May. This could result in a slight delay as we process twice the number of transfers as normal, please bear with us as we process everything just as quickly as we can.
If you have any questions for us please remember that you can submit these here on our website, which is quick and easy to do.
Our next working day thereafter will be Monday 11 May.
15 April 2020
If you're facing increased financial pressure as a result of the pandemic and you think you will struggle to meet your loan repayments please contact us. We can provide greater assistance, work with you to maintain your credit rating and ensure you can continue to access affordable loans if you talk to us - the sooner the better.
09 April 2020
On behalf of all members, we made a donation of £5,000 to Fife Voluntary Action's crowdfunder appeal to support the most vulnerable people in Fife at this difficult time. They have helped over 1,000 people and raised nearly £15,000 already. We're proud to be able to contribute to such a great cause that's helping fellow Fifers who need it most.
07 April 2020
You can now join your local community bank online - it's quick and easy, with most accounts being opened on the same day! Click here to join now!
29 March 2020
Our AGM was scheduled to take place on Tuesday 31 March 2020 but we have had to postpone it in line with government guidance on isolation and protection of public health. We will make alternative arrangements and advise our Members accordingly.
25 March 2020
We've posted a message from our CEO on our flu pandemic page.
We have closed branches to walk-ins. Members need to contact us to arrange an appointment and we will let the Member in at the agreed time. This has been necessary to enforce government-mandated directions to minimise social contact and keep our staff, volunteers and Members safe. We are still offering full services, but have had to change how we interact with Members at this very difficult time.
23 March 2020
We are reducing the opening times of our branches in line with government instructions to reduce non-essential travel and contact. We will open for 2 hours each day (Monday-Friday, 10-12noon) for those Members who must access cash over the counter. All other activity should be directed through our website our telephone service.
22 March 2020
As some of our staff work from home as part of our business continuity plans, we've introduced an online request area for Members to request balances, transfers or ask us a question. It will avoid Members having to spend time waiting on the phone or coming into branches during the pandemic. We're guaranteeing a response in under 1 hour during working hours (Mon-Fri 9am-4pm). We'd like to thank all Members for their support and patience at this challenging time.
20 March 2020
From Monday 23 March, our Methilhill branch will be open 1000-12noon Monday to Friday. This is a slight reduction in hours designed to protect staff, volunteers and Members.
17 March 2020
We've published a new page on our website to keep Members updated on our services during the current pandemic flu crisis.
16 March 2020
For public health reasons and to protect our members and volunteers, we have taken the decision to suspend all access points until further notice. We'll keep this under review and update our website and Facebook page when the situation changes. Our branches remain open as normal and you can call us or e-mail us if you need any help or support.
13 March 2020
We launched our new website. We're still uploading new content to it, so do check back in a few days' time!
12 March 2020
We published our latest newsletter - click here to download it (pdf file)