Branch of the future
"We focused closely on all steps in our interaction with customers: the reason they decide to enter, the entrance, the paths taken inside, the wait, the interaction with the bank and the exit. At every step there is a corresponding zone in our sector designed to make the experience as enjoyable as possible. We have combined the effect of more than 20 projects and initiatives in all banking sectors that have both a rational and emotional impact."
Vice Chief of Retail Banking - UniCredit Bulbank
The first UniCredit branch of the future was opened at the Sofia Business Park in Bulgaria. This new concept combined several innovations to make a visit to the bank a more pleasant experience for UniCredit Bulbank customers.
One of UniCredit's priority projects in Central and Eastern Europe, this concept has been developed in collaboration with British company i-am and refined in branches across Europe.
INNOVATION IN CUSTOMER PATHWAYS
The Branch of the Future's exterior features:
■ Large transparent facades that allow pedestrians to see what is happening inside
■ Screens for communication on the outside instead of the usual advertising posters in the windows
■ Customer testimonials instead of commercials about products
■ Nighttime lighting and a distinctive logo that makes the branch visible and easily recognizable
■ Modern materials combined with wood to create a feeling of intimacy
When customers walk through the doors, everything has been designed to make them feel special, welcome and assisted. This entails:
■ A greeting from the customer manager
■ Fully functional self-service kiosks
■ A BNA, a booth to access online banking services and an interactive wall - all available to customers 24/7
■ A line management system for customers who continue their visit at the branch
The design also encourages customers to continue their visit through:
■ An environment that is easily navigated
■ A fast service zone in the heart of the branch that features:
■ Open desks where customers can directly communicate with bank employees
■ A special area with tall tables for meetings between customers and employees, or for customers to mingle with each other
The hospitable design also:
■ Manages queues so that customers can comfortably sit and wait for appointments and tellers
■ Provides customers relaxing waiting areas
■ Displays screens showing customers their wait times and information that may be of interest to them
■ Gives free Wi-Fi so customers can catch up on personal or business-related tasks
■ Serves refreshments through a beverage machine
■ Creates a comfortable environment with scents and background music to ensure a pleasant visit
To enable our professionals to engage with clients one-on-one and better answer their questions, the design also provides:
■ Multiple areas where customers and bankers can interact
■ Private meeting rooms when necessary
■ Videoconferencing facilities to connect with experts at the headquarters
■ A central position for the branch manager to better supervise interactions and processes
When customers are ready to leave the branch, they are accompanied to the exit and encouraged to return.
This gives them the opportunity to provide immediate feedback on the quality of services rendered.