The quality of an in-person branch experience is paramount to retaining clients at your bank or credit union. When they enter your doors, it is typically in search of human interaction and support with a large transaction or complex loan.
At Wittenbach, we understand the branch security needs that keep your employees and clients safe, as well as the user-friendly personal touches that keep them coming back satisfied. In a recent blog post, we outlined three major reasons that branches continue to stay relevant. Now we’ll build on that foundation, guiding you through several ways to create an experience inside your financial institution that is modern and memorable.
Guiding your clients to success
We will start from the outside of the branch and work our way in, addressing every touchpoint with which a client may interact. Remember that there are several components to an exceptional customer service experience within your branch. In each case, the transaction should be as frictionless as possible, with the client receiving quality information and undivided attention. The in-person banking experience is typically a sensitive one, involving larger sums of money and/or vulnerable points in your clients’ lives. Handling the customer experience quickly, securely, and with a human touch can set your financial institution apart from competitors.
Entryways: This method of access control gives the first impression inside your branch, and serves to control the flow of foot traffic into your building. If you are in an urban, high-traffic area, installing an entry vestibule with a bank of ATMs (automated teller machines) or ITMs (interactive teller machines) may be the right approach. If your clients need a quick and secure transaction, ATMs and ITMs can facilitate cash withdrawals and deposits, perform balance checks, and in some cases process bill payments. Top-of-the-line entry vestibules are typically made from bullet resistant glass and either stainless steel or aluminum, providing an inviting appearance while serving its main purpose.
Turnstile entry systems offer an alternative method of security and foot traffic control. Available in sleek designs, they can maintain an inviting appearance to your branch space while deterring unintended entry and excessive traffic in high-volume areas.
Staff: In the area of digital convenience, the main driver of clients to brick-and-mortar branches is the human interaction component. This can begin with a greeting at the door, continue through complex transactions or loan processes, and end with gratitude as the customer exits. You can supplement your staff’s bandwidth to support clients using tools such as currency discriminators which quickly count and sort bills, and other hardware which drives cash automation.
When the tellers and staff inside your bank or credit union excel at relationship building, clients become more comfortable and partner with them on everything from routine transactions and travel notices to pivotal moments in their lives: births and deaths, marriages and divorces, starting new businesses, purchasing homes, and so on. All of these circumstances come with complex financial rules, and potential questions that your staff should be well equipped to answer. An app or online banking experience cannot deliver that level of service and care, but an in-person branch can deliver this and more, thus reinforcing its relevance.
Training your financial institution’s staff on existing technology and security procedures is also pertinent to customer satisfaction. If tellers know how to leverage the technological resources around them to provide a confident, quick banking experience, customers will notice this efficiency. This same standard of training should apply to emergency situations, such as if a would-be criminal intruder enters the branch. Your staff’s ability to handle emergencies swiftly and correctly provides a level of branch security that can successfully protect customers and their assets.
Vaults and safes: Your clients likely won’t know the model of your vault or who manufactured it, but they will trust you to keep their valuables secure. Since your branch is built around your vault, it is important to select one with a reputation for quality craftsmanship and the durability to withstand attacks of significant magnitude. Hamilton’s modular vaults are one such example, constructed from concrete panels in custom sizes to expertly outfit your exact building dimensions. They are burglary resistant under regulation UL 608, offering concrete thickness options that can withstand up to two continuous hours of “attack by common mechanical tools, electric tools, cutting torches, or any combination of those means.”
Your customers depend on federally-insured safe deposit boxes housed within the vault to protect the most precious valuables and sensitive documents that they themselves cannot keep as secure: physical stocks and bonds, wills, contracts and deeds, family heirlooms, and other items which cannot be replaced easily or at all.
Surveillance systems: An added layer of branch security and client peace of mind is the electronic surveillance system; the most noteworthy is the Network Video Recorder, or NVR. NVR systems use digital or hybrid IP cameras placed virtually anywhere in your branch to capture high-resolution footage of all internal happenings. Systems such as the Verint EdgeVR 300 serve to deter security breaches simply by being visible. However, in the event of an emergency, they are also compatible with facial recognition technology that can identify culprits more easily than ever before.
When your financial institution is equipped with the right soft skills and hardware, a superior customer experience is within reach. Tangible customer support couples with behind-the-scenes security measures to ensure comfort throughout the transaction, from the time your client enters to the time they leave the building. Let Wittenbach help you select the right products for your branch, including an installation and maintenance cadence that ensures your investment is well protected.