The branch experience is a series of small steps in a much wider banking journey and every branch experience is unique

What's the Branch of the Future like?

In the wake digital services, where banking has become an invisible activity that occurs in the palm of our hands, banks have been scrambling to figure out how to best deliver value across their bank branches. Just about a year ago in September of 2015, one of UK's leading retail banks approached us at Fjord with an exciting opportunity to redesign the bank branch of the future.

rbs branch problem

In efforts to optimise business efficiency and improve the customer experience across their bank branches, our client set out to explore future possibilities on how their 691 bank branches can provide value in the banking experience. We began this exploration by reassessing the current state of their branches, by conducting employee and customer interviews in bank branches from Lewisham to Manchester UK.

A series of key personas were identified to inform the potential journeys across the various bank branches. And as the project evolved, we discovered the need for a more practical redefinition of the bank branch as it was clear that people still needed a human connection when it comes to managing their finances. Although the branch was not the only touchpoint in managing finances, it was an important one especially when it came to dealing with fraud, opening an account or changing their address. We found that the branch experience is a small step in much wider banking journey and every branch experience is unique.

Breaking the Brief: Help [client] understand the current state of their bank branches

To better inform our client of their current branch experiences, we identified and organised them into five different types (Advisory, Business, Community, Satellite and Express) and outlined the optimal journey for each to ensure the bank can understand their customers, engage with their customers, fulfill customer needs and confirm customer satisfaction.

These optimal journeys were visualised on an interactive microsite for the internal product team to help inform areas for service improvement across each branch type.

To make use of the information on the microsite among stakeholders across the wider organisation, we created a game of possibilities using cards to showcase the various branch types and their respective service optimisations. This became a tangible source of engagement, equipping the internal organisation to strike discussions and actions around how they could begin to formulate an innovation strategy for their bank branches.