These 3 Banking Brands are Revolutionizing the Branch Experience

When it comes to innovation, it can often be all too tempting to focus on the biggest brands in the industry for inspiration. However, one should never count out the little guys when it comes to great ideas.

Smaller businesses can often be the most innovative. They may not have the huge budgets or dedicated innovation labs of their bigger competitors, but they are often filled with eager and hungry minds which feel a greater bond to the brand they represent and a desire to give it their greatest effort.

With that in mind, here are three smaller banking brands which are bringing some amazing ideas to the table and revolutionizing the physical banking experience for their customers.

#1 Woori Bank

Korean banking brand Woori Bank has plans to introduce drive-thru banking to its customers. Now, before you cry that many larger banks already offer drive-thru services at some of their branches, this one is slightly different.

The drive-thru service offered by Woori won't be available at its branches. Instead, it'll allow its customers to perform transactions such as currency exchanges and withdrawals at food and beverage establishments such as Starbucks and McDonald's. Customers will be able to withdraw cash and exchange up to one million won ($854.70) without needing to find or set foot in a banking branch.

"The service is a part of Woori Bank's efforts to improve financial customers' convenience," said a Woori Bank official. "Not only Woori Bank but also other commercial banks are in talks with local fast food and coffee shop franchises to offer the drive-thru service. Financial customers will be able to make withdrawals and exchange currencies at local drive-thru restaurants by next year."

Being able to combine a morning latte with a branch visit will certainly make some people's lives more convenient.

#2 Dupaco Community Credit Union

Iowa-based credit union Dupaco is demolishing its current headquarters and creating a brand new base of operations - complete with a special Learning Lab branch.

The Learning Lab's mission will be to Dupaco's customers learn all about financial literacy. Customers will be educated on understanding their money and will receive advice on how to improve their financial positions. Hands-on demonstrations of Dupaco desktop, tablet, and mobile deposit services, and more will all be available at the new branch. The branch will also feature live video tellers who will be able to assist customers through special ATM kiosks.

"Live video tellers will give members more access to Dupaco branch employees in order to have deeper conversations about money, products, and services," said Dupaco Chief Marketing Officer, David Klavitter. "We also expect the video tellers to increase future opportunities for member convenience - to serve more members, in more places, with expanded hours of service."

Other features of the Learning Lab include iPad training counters to help members learn how to use Dupaco's digital services, interactive laboratory tables for small group discussions and workshops, built-in electronic wall displays to aid in consultations about money, and digital signage and lighting which use LED illumination to conserve energy and reduce electricity costs by more than 35 percent.

#3 CB&S Bank

As a leading community bank, Alabama-based CB&S Bank wanted a way to make the act of visiting one of its tellers more streamlined and convenient. To this end, it has entered into a partnership with Epson America, Inc. and Atris Technology to deploy 250 Epson OmniLink® TM-T70II-DT printers and TM-S2000 multifunction teller devices in its branches.

These devices will allow identity documents to be scanned and captured automatically - reducing the time tellers need to spend with each customer validating their ID. It's expected that the new technology could reduce processing time to 30 seconds or less.

"We have seen an increase in transactions being performed at the branch level without adding additional staff and are now automating most steps within the transaction process," said Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer at CB&S Bank, Justin Hof. "In addition, we did not have to invest in new computers for our tellers, allowing our thin client investment to continue. The solutions provided by Atris and Epson provide us with a significant competitive advantage in our markets."

Final Thoughts

Three innovative banking brands at the smaller end of the spectrum are bringing us innovative ideas which should make even the biggest financial institutions sit up and pay attention. Everyone loves an underdog, and it just goes to show that great ideas can come from anywhere, not just from the usual suspects.

Branch innovation is set to be a hot topic at Future Branches 2019, taking place this November at the Hilton Austin, Austin, TX.

Download the agenda for more information and insights.

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