Women in Technology 

July 2, 2024

By W.B. King

Special edition celebrating Women’s History Month 2024! Stay tuned for more intriguing profiles throughout the month.

In what is a recurring feature, Finopotamus spotlights innovative women who are positively impacting technology applications in the credit union industry, and beyond.
For this issue, we visited with SWIVEL COO Amanda Crocker. The San Antonio, Texas-based fintech provides financial institutions integrated transaction enablement solutions for account holders, borrowers, and departments across financial institutions, while also mitigating risks associated with payments processing in the digital environment.
By W.B. King
After starting her career in program management in the nonprofit and manufacturing spaces in the early 2000s, Amanda Crocker soon realized that she could have a broader impact on the operations she was engaged in if she better utilized next-generation technology solutions.

“At the time, there was an explosion of principled approaches such as Agile, Scrum, SixSigma and PMP,” she told Finopotamus. “While these are still in use today, there is a more flexible approach to the systems to ensure they are working depending on where a company is in its lifecycle.”

Prior to becoming SWIVEL Transactions, LLC COO in 2023, Crocker held a number of positions, including program management manager, head of PMO, at Microsoft, and later served on Box’s global operations program management leadership team. Most recently, she was Meta’s global head of payments operations.

Over these many years, she noted that both technologies and executive leadership philosophies have changed.

Amanda Crocker

“From a management style perspective, there is a larger focus on how every individual can contribute to having a meaningful impact on the company and the communities served,” she continued. “Early in my career, the focus was on strict controls and staying within a process lane. Companies have since learned that employees who feel they are connected to the organization and able to influence outcomes are more fulfilled and committed long term.”  

Empowering Future Generations
In recent years, Crocker has been pleased to see more women working in technology, adding that there are also more opportunities for women in tech leadership positions.
“The change is driven by companies adopting diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) programs, utilizing data distributed by research organizations such as Leanin.org, and the negative business impacts for those that don’t adjust the way they are operating,” she shared.
“Women still represent only one in four leaders today, with women of color at just one in 16, with this statistic perpetuating and decreasing at every level of seniority,” she continued. “The positive is that there are more organizations for women, like Women in Payments [a global network], to support each other and empower future generations.”
Reflecting on mentors and champions in her life, Crocker noted an inspirational female manager at the beginning of her career.
“She was an advocate, putting me in rooms and at tables for important work as well as giving me strong mentorship and guidance on the skillsets required to grow,” Crocker told Finopotamus.  “She never limited my impact based on the role that I had and gave me many opportunities to succeed.”

As a result of these experiences, Crocker looks for opportunities to mentor women new to the field or already many steps into their professional journey.

“I work every day to ensure that I am paying it forward with all those around me, with my personal goal being to leave every team in a better place,” she continued. “I spend time mentoring, highlighting impactful women, being an ally and pushing our organization to prioritize DEI efforts.”

Providing Streamlined Support

With more than 800 financial institutions as clients, many of which are credit unions, Crocker said SWIVEL, a wholly owned subsidiary of SWBC, provides businesses and individuals a wide range of services, including insurance, mortgages, wealth management, and employee benefits, among other offerings.

To ensure these services track with the latest tech in the market, her team takes a streamlined approach to investigating and adopting new platforms.

“Instant payments is something that is going to offer major benefits for credit unions and it’s still only in its early phase. While it provides significant improvements in the speed of money movement for consumers, there are also significant opportunities to streamline and advance internal business processes and B2B transactions through this technology, as well,” Crocker noted.
“Innovations that can help credit unions fully leverage the benefits of instant payments, especially by providing easy, streamlined support in the processes with their core systems, will be critical in further driving this evolving space,” she added.
Crocker’s team keeps a keen eye on how the instant payments space is morphing from “typical account-to-account transfers,” a development she called exciting. “We are innovating and focused on opportunities to enable seamless transactions that allow credit unions to serve their members in new, effective ways that alleviate painful and slow processes.”
Credit Unions: A More Thoughtful, Measured Approach
When Finopotamus asked Crocker what separates credit unions from other financial institutions, she responded: “Credit unions are focused on the communities they serve and are driven by the success of every member.
“Because credit unions are not-for-profit and member-owned, they are much more dedicated to their communities than shareholders,” she added. “And since they have this responsibility, they tend to take a more thoughtful, measured approach from a technology perspective when making advances.”
In order for the credit union movement to move forward and evolve in a “safe, scaleable manner,” Crocker said it’s imperative that credit unions continue to partner with like-minded fintechs.

“SWIVEL’s relationships with our 800-plus credit union partners have allowed us to provide secure transactions for payments, funding, collections and more,” she continued. “Additionally, we have numerous integrations with many different platforms and solutions that are critical to credit union infrastructure, enabling further efficiency and better operations.”

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Learn more about Transaction Enablement™