Michael Hafer
Jun 3, 2021

Banks and credit unions must manage ATMs as mission-critical devices and consider an interactive teller machine (ITM) to soften the blow of branch closures.

If you have only scanned the headlines from the business world, the news about bank branches seems grim, as every week brings more branch closings by banks and credit unions.

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It goes without saying that retail banking has many moving parts and Bank-at-Work programs are no exception.

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An abandoned machine shop becomes a brew pub.

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While digital transactions have taken a bite out of walk-in traffic, the brick-and-mortar branch is far from obsolete.

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The branch that once captured 100% of all transactions now only represents 10% of transactions and has been impacted by various industry trends and fads.

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With increasing adoption of digital and mobile channels, along with changing customer preferences, branch banking is undergoing a tremendous shift towards self-service banking.

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The digitization of retail banking has changed consumer expectations in terms of their relationships with their bank and preferred channels for conducting banking transactions.

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Stretching back to the 1980s, a key worry with branch consolidation has been customer attrition, or the risk that accountholders will take their business elsewhere if their anchor local branch is closed or merged with another location.

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In this age of self-service channels and tech-savvy customers, do community banks still need to be investing in contact centers and trying to keep up with the money-center banks’ 24/7 accessibility? The simple answer is, yes.

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Customer wait time is one of the most reliable leading indicators of customer satisfaction in retail because, well, customers don’t like to wait.

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