Leveraging technology to enhance branch health and safety

first_img 5SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Tim Klatt As the Director of Retail Strategies for La Macchia Group, Tim Klatt brings over 15 years of experience in geographical market analysis, strategy development and large scale retail deployments for … Web: www.lamacchiagroup.com Details When it comes to the consumer journey, the branch banking experience has looked and felt the same for decades, and consumers were accepting of that. But, even before COVID-19, things were starting to change. In recent years, consumers have come to expect the same high-tech amenities at their banks and credit unions as they experience in other retail environments, balanced with the in-person, community-based financial expertise that occurs face-to-face in the physical branch. As “shelter at home” orders expire and branches across the nation reopen, not only will there be a continued need to balance the high-tech with the individualized, personal-relationship, but there will be a need to adapt in direct response to the wants and needs of the post-pandemic consumer.As a result, financial institutions must consider modifications that prioritize public health and safety – in a way that eases any fears, and projects a sense of security, safety and well-being for consumers and employees alike. There are multiple, baseline modifications branches can and should consider before reopening. Which solutions are right for each branch will be dependent on multiple factors, including the local impact of the pandemic and consumer sentiment. Simple modifications, like floor markers, acrylic partitions and sanitization stations, meet the immediate need and are critical to a reopening strategy; however, as we look to the branch of the future, we have an opportunity to seamlessly integrate these and more advanced safety elements to ensure a comfortable experience for the consumer. Through creative, adaptable design, a relationship-based, high-tech, AND high-safety branch can and should feel natural.Institutions will need to communicate digitally that they are ready for employees and patrons to return and will need to quickly demonstrate that they have created spaces and environments that prioritize public health and safety. Imagine a branch designed for social distancing, with the consumer journey mapped and managed to seamlessly control spacing and interaction.  Members and employees enter through automatic doors, never having to touch a handle.  Copper alloy surfaces that are anti-microbial as well as functional and aesthetically pleasing adorn properly spaced consultation stations.  In a space drenched in natural sunlight, UV-based disinfecting systems target high-touch, high-traffic areas.  Enhanced HVAC filtration systems continuously maintain the air quality of the physical space behind-the-scenes. These types of changes are key to the branch of the future, but there are even more things financial leaders can do.Understandably, much attention is being paid to the safety of the physical branch and the changes that will come. However, it’s important to consider how all your banking channels work together to promote and protect safety. Now may be the time for a paradigm shift.  Rather than physical vs digital channels, what if we looked at technology, including digital, as a foundational strategy to support and connect in-person service, remote service and self-service?  Would that enable financial leaders to more readily adapt to whatever challenges come their way?Looking ahead, technology will enable a better, safer branch experience and is key to integrating self-service and in-person service specifically.  With a fully tech-enabled journey, should a member want or need to visit a branch for something like opening an account or refinancing a loan, being able to schedule an appointment online will help to manage their time and expectations, and control branch traffic.  Enhancing that experience one step further, digital queuing enables staff to alert members waiting in the parking lot when it is safe to enter the lobby.In the not-so-distant future, once a member enters the branch, digital signage populated by a content management program can highlight the various ways the branch has been modified for their safety and include messaging on best-practices for in-branch interaction.  That content can easily be changed to feature promotions, new perks and even local community events.  During scheduled meetings, there will likely be an even greater desire to minimize the time physically spent in the branch, and a digital strategy that enables members to start something online (new account activation, a loan, etc.) and seamlessly continue the conversation in-branch will be highly valued.  For simple transactions, many ATMs can handle withdrawals and deposits, while an upgrade to or the addition of ITMs connected to core systems can help maintain physical distancing while providing personalized support via a remote video operator.  These are just a few of the many changes credit unions can make to create a better, safer experience by positioning digital or technology strategies at the center of their universe.There is no crystal ball showing us what the future holds. An investment in your future involves both quickly and effectively modifying your space to meet the immediate needs of today’s post-pandemic consumer, while keeping an eye toward investments that allow you to easily adapt to what the future might bring. The institutions that adapt will be the ones that thrive.last_img read more

British Open 2019: Shane Lowry reflects on stunning turnaround to victory

first_img“Shane, I couldn’t be more proud of you – see you for a pint!” via @Graeme_McDowell pic.twitter.com/NyBz1o0oga— The European Tour (@EuropeanTour) July 21, 2019Lowry was also able to share his winning moment with wife Wendy and daughter Iris, a moment he will cherish.”I spotted my family when I walked around the corner to have a look at the green and I welled up a little bit. I still had to play a decent shot but luckily I did,” he said.”Those pictures are everything. My wife knew that no matter what, she [Iris] should be there because had I lost she would console me.” The contrast to 12 months ago could not be more vast. Lowry had failed to make the weekend at The Open for a fourth straight year, plummeted to 92 in the world rankings and had lost some love for the game.”I suppose I didn’t even know going out this morning if I was good enough to win a major. I knew I was able to put a few days together,” Lowry told reporters. “I just went out there and tried to give my best. I’m here now, a major champion. I can’t believe I’m saying it, to be honest. I think the people around me really believed that I could, which helped me an awful lot. “I do remember a lot of times in the past when I’m down on myself and serious chats with Neil [Manchip, his coach], he always reminded me, he always said that I was going to win one, at least one, he said. So I suppose when the people around you really believe in you, it helps you an awful lot.Incredible performance @ShaneLowryGolfEnjoy every single minute of it, starting from the party tonight!Thanks to everyone in Portrush for making it an unforgettable @TheOpen for all the players and families— Francesco Molinari (@F_Molinari) July 21, 2019″I grew up holing putts back home to win The Open. I watched Paddy [Padraig Harrington] win his two Opens. I didn’t even know him back then. I’m obviously very good friends with him. “You go into Paddy’s house and the Claret Jug is sitting on the kitchen table, and I’m going to have one on my kitchen table as well. I said that to him, that’s going to be quite nice.”Carnoustie, that just shows how fickle golf is. Golf is a weird sport and you never know what’s around the corner. That’s why you need to remind yourself, and you need other people there to remind you. You need to fight through the bad times.”I sat in the car park in Carnoustie on Thursday, almost a year ago right to this week, and I cried. Golf wasn’t my friend at the time. “It was something that become very stressful and it was weighing on me and I just didn’t like doing it. What a difference a year makes, I suppose.”The People’s Champion  #TheOpen pic.twitter.com/4KVfXRHci4— The Open (@TheOpen) July 21, 2019After his Carnoustie setback, Lowry split with long-term caddie Dermot Byrne and has seen a marked turn up in fortunes with Bo Martin carrying his bag, winning the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championships, and recording top-10s at the RBC Heritage, US PGA Championship and Canadian Open prior to his victory at Portrush.Lowry, who revealed Martin recently became a father, said his caddie helped him keep calm amid Sunday’s nerves.”Bo’s been incredible in the last year,” he added. “He started caddying for me about September last year,which is about when I started playing well again.”He brought a new lease of life to me, he was unbelievable today. I kept telling him how nervous I was, how scared I was, how much I don’t want to mess it up. “He was great at keeping me in the moment. We’ve formed a great relationship. It was great for him today, they had a baby two weeks ago. He’s now become a very good friend of mine, to share it with someone close, it’s very special.” An emotional Shane Lowry said he cried in a parking lot at Carnoustie after missing the cut at last year’s Open Championship, as he clinched the Claret Jug in style at Royal Portrush on Sunday.Lowry scored a gritty one-over 72 in demanding conditions, where high winds and intermittent heavy rain made life difficult for the field, to seal a six-shot victory from Tommy Fleetwood.last_img read more