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4 key ingredients for a strong self-service offering

By : Lisa Kellermeyer

April 17, 2018 08:00 AM

As financial institutions around the world work to stay relevant and win new customers and maintain existing ones in an increasingly competitive industry, delivering a strong customer experience on self-service platforms could be crucial.

 

The significance of this particular channel is underlined by the fact that, in 2016, the number of ATM cash withdrawals worldwide increased to 106 billion from 99 billion the previous year (Source: RBR Global ATM Market and Forecasts to 2022). RBR has also emphasized the importance of strong ATM networks for emerging economies.

 

Furthermore, the ongoing evolution of the self-service channel means its value now extends beyond basic cash dispensing. An increasing number of services - from mixed-media deposit to personalized advice from tellers - are moving from the branch counter to self-service devices.

 

In light of the growing importance of self-service to retail banking markets all over the world, what are the key ingredients required to deliver the best possible experience to customers?

 

Reliability

 

First and foremost, users expect ATMs and other self-service machines to be reliable, providing the core services they need, when they need them. A high level of dependability is also essential for banks that are committing to the strategy of moving transactions to this channel to reduce costs.

 

One of the most effective ways for financial institutions to deliver the reliability consumers want and the business depends on is by having a detailed overview of their network, which can be achieved with device management systems.

 

Having complete visibility over your self-service estate helps enable FIs to maximize service availability by identifying faults, tracking transactions and addressing potential cash shortages.

 

A strong user experience

 

In the mobile age, consumers have become accustomed to smooth, intuitive and aesthetically pleasing user experiences on the various devices they use daily.

 

To reduce the risk of a diminished customer experience and negative brand associations, banks should be striving to reach the same standards on their self-service platforms.

 

In the ATM channel, features such as a clear, vivid display, contactless access and touch-screen interfaces can help to ensure that the user walks away with positive impressions, not only of the technology, but of a financial institution’s brand as a whole.

 

Integration with other channels and devices

 

Omni-channel has become a buzzword in the financial services industry over the past few years. Consumers are showing increasing demand for integration and consistency across banking channels, giving them the freedom to submit information or begin a transaction in one channel and seamlessly transfer to another, with no lapse in service.

 

This is an expectation that must be reflected in the self-service channel. It's no longer enough for ATMs to function in isolation from other banking platforms and technologies.

 

In the case of ATM marketing, for example, it's important for messages to be informed by decisions and transactions the user has made in other channels, so they can be as relevant and effective as possible. We are also witnessing an exciting trend of convergence between ATMs and mobile devices.

 

Evolving functionality

 

With era-defining developments such as open banking and PSD2 driving the industry forward, it's clear that there is little financial institutions can achieve by staying still.

 

Given the ongoing consumer reliance on ATMs in particular, the need to continue innovating is just as acute in the self-service channel as it is in mobile or digital banking.

 

By investing in the modernization of your device networks, you can deliver a next-generation customer experience and also drive efficiency for the business, particularly with solutions such as on-screen access to remote tellers, mixed-media deposit and cash recycling.

 

As customer demands for convenience grow and the branch continues its evolution from a transaction center into an advisory hub, services such as these look set to become more important than ever.

Lisa Kellermeyer

Global Marketing Manager

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Lisa Kellermeyer is a Global Marketing Manager for Management Solutions, based at NCR's World Headquarters in Duluth, GA. Lisa is responsible for the marketing of NCR's Financial Device and Transaction Management portfolio.