28 July 2017
download the report now

Westpac embarks on major branch network overhaul

11 December 2012  |  5451 views  |  1 Westpac logo

Dismissing forecasts of the bank branch's imminent demise, Westpac has committed A$240 million to a major, tech-heavy overhaul designed to bring its network into the 21st century.

The 'Bank Now' project will see the money used to refurbish a third of the retail and business banking network of 680 branches over the next three years. The rest will be updated as existing property leases expire.

The Aussie bank argues that the increasing use of online and mobile channels for transactional services has not made branches obsolete but has changed what customers expect from them.

"Some commentators have predicted the death of the branch in the digital world but nothing could be further from the truth. As our new branches show, not only are we confident about the future of branches we also know this is exactly the type of face-to-face service that our small business and personal customers are asking for," says Jason Yetton, group executive, retail and business banking, Westpac.

Traditional screens and counters that separate customers from staff are being scrapped in favour of an open plan lay-out combining a mix of self-service banking options and tailored advice and support from specialist banking staff.

While customers will have access 24/7 to 'smart' ATMs in foyers, for more complex transactions they will stand next to personal bankers who will undertake their business on Westpac's new computerised teller system.

At the centre of the new-look branch is a lounge-style area where customers can check their account balances, transfer money between accounts and pay bills using Westpac's iPad app on dedicated tablets. Touchscreens will offer access to information that users can e-mail to save on paper.

The offices also have more private areas and provide video conferencing capabilities for meetings and conversations with Westpac's specialist teams of advisers, planners and financial experts based in other locations.

Comments: (1)

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune | 13 December, 2012, 10:31

Props to Westpac for appreciating that each channel has its own strengths and investing to reinforce its branch network instead of falling for the "branch is dead" notion spouted by the digerati. 

Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 thumb ups! (Log in to thumb up)
Comment on this story (membership required)

Finextra news in your inbox

For Finextra's free daily newsletter, breaking news flashes and weekly jobs board: sign up now

Related stories

Swedbank to split off digital bank from branch network

Swedbank to split off digital bank from branch network

28 November 2012  |  6522 views  |  0 comments | 12 tweets | 2 linkedin
St George signposts mobile-only future for smartphone users; more jobs to go at Westpac

St George signposts mobile-only future for smartphone users; more jobs to go at Westpac

05 November 2012  |  9750 views  |  0 comments | 11 tweets | 3 linkedin
Bank branch reform key to retail banking recovery - A T Kearney

Bank branch reform key to retail banking recovery - A T Kearney

09 October 2012  |  6954 views  |  0 comments | 1 tweets
Bank branches set to disappear as more customers go online

Bank branches set to disappear as more customers go online

21 September 2012  |  11131 views  |  0 comments | 3 tweets
Westpac trials SIM-based mobile payments

Westpac trials SIM-based mobile payments

07 August 2012  |  13640 views  |  0 comments

Related company news

 

Related blogs

Create a blog about this story (membership required)
download the paper nowvisit www.worldpaymentsreport.comvisit www.ncr.com

Who is commenting?

Top topics

Most viewed Most shared
UK judge blocks £14bn class action suit against MastercardUK judge blocks £14bn class action su...
11402 views comments | 7 tweets | 7 linkedin
Yet more deals announced in payments sectorYet more deals announced in payments secto...
10495 views comments | 7 tweets | 21 linkedin
Machines could take over 30% of bank jobs: McKinseyMachines could take over 30% of bank jobs:...
10385 views comments | 30 tweets | 29 linkedin
US firm to implant employees with RFID chipsUS firm to implant employees with RFID chi...
9126 views 16 comments | 33 tweets | 38 linkedin
Credit scoring startup Aire raises $5m; wins Zopa dealCredit scoring startup Aire raises $5m; wi...
8208 views comments | 9 tweets | 8 linkedin

Featured job

Competitive
London, UK (or flexible)

Find your next job