Design For Banking Privacy-Agency Branch Banking

Your walk-in customers visit retail branches to carry-out very personal, private business. Many of them have the ability to comfortably log-on to their personal computers to make these same transactions in the privacy of their home, yet they choose to make a face-to-face visit. Some of these walk-in customers are visiting because they are unsure of their internet banking abilities or may be uneasy about on-line privacy. It’s not likely that they have come to your bank for the free gourmet coffee, cookies and trendy music, though these freebies are always welcome. It is quite probable that your customers are simply stopping-by to have a very personal, private bank transaction, executed in person with an official receipt in-hand. Your bank design should facilitate your customer’s desire for privacy at all times during their visit.

There are a few different bank branch styles with varying levels of privacy currently operating today that can be generally classified as follows: trendy café-style; the traditional “stand in line” teller window style; and now, a newer, more customer attentive and private type of banking experience developed by architect John L. Shedd of
R. W. Larson Financial Facilities called “Agency Branch Banking”. Agency Branch Banking responds to a 2006 banking survey conducted to determine bank customer habits and preferences. The Agency Branch design concept was developed to provide a more consultative and private approach to the customer experience, while opening up subtle–or not so subtle opportunities for the bank to present new products and services.

Privacy is becoming more and more important as banks are reaching out and building new branches to be convenient to their customer’s neighborhoods and workplaces. Now when your customer visits a café-style or traditional neighborhood branch, it is very likely that they will encounter a curious neighbor or co-worker in the parking lot; at the front entrance; elbow-to-elbow at the check desk; in the waiting line standing one foot in front of them; or standing five feet away at the next teller’s window.