IBM Bluemix and Antuar's inBranch application suite.

The IBM Banking Center of Excellence, Barcelona, has a new app suite in town running on Bluemix; Read More>>>

x5 #WomenInTech keynotes at FutureBranches firmly on our radar.

I was delighted to see the line up of talent for Future Branches this year; great keynotes, great conversation starters and a great mix of genius with 14 out of 49 Future Branch speakers being women. Fair play. Read More>>>

3 Future Branch Speakers we're making a beeline for this year.

We’re at Future Branches this year and why wouldn’t we, it’s got a solid line up of speakers. Read More>>>

Come visit us at Future Branches if profitable branches are on your agenda for 2020!

It’s that time of year when the Financial Industry descends to explore, discover and share insights, ideas and developments in and for branches. Future Branches Conference 2017 will be held in Austin Texas December 4, 5 and 6. Read More>>>

Branch Innovation, Delivered

In March 2017, Antuar ran a cmapiagn on Retail Banker International Digital Magazine identifying key innovation ideas that Financial Institutions shoudl consider when looking at Branch transformation. There are a series of items that will be covered here over the coming months... Read More>>>

ATMs – The Missing Link in Holistic UX in Banking

The Federal Reserve’s Consumer and Mobile Financial Services Report is a fascinating insight in to how people interact with their bank. The growth of mobile banking across all segments and demographics is not surprising however the fact that 78% of these smartphone users have visited a branch in the last month may surprise some. Read More>>>

Is branch your storefront?

In the retail industry the shift from bricks and mortar to online has been dramatic. Businesses such as Amazon have grown to be world leaders without any retail lineage on main street. The conversation about retail has many parallels with the rhetoric about bank branches. The benefits .......... Read More>>>

Diet Plan for your Branch Network

Financial institutions have varying motivations for putting their branch network on a diet. They may want to reduce costs, alter the appearance or just be leaner. Understanding the motivation is critical to devising a plan that can succeed..........Read More>>>

Branches: Location, Location, Location!

The purpose of the branch is customer acquisition, product sales and customer retention. Historically transactions were the drivers for branch traffic and provided the opportunity for sales and service interaction. Financial institutions are trying to drive transactions out of the branch...........Read More>>>

Fans Not Customers

Vernon Hill is an atypical banker who answers questions directly with great humor. Reading his opinions on the world of banking and business, you would be forgiven for thinking that he is a twenty-something, converse wearing, VC backed, San Francisco based start-up founder. He is actually a suit wearing businessman in his seventies. What struck me most was that the values he extols in banking represent the cultural characteristics that credit unions should be focused on..........Read More>>>

5 Ways to Use NFC in Banks & Credit Unions

Near Field Communications (NFC) can be used for a number of things. In this blog we highlight the 5 best ways to use NFC in your financial institution. Payments, Loyalty, Identity & Access, Ticketing, and Marketing.........Read More>>>

NFC For Beginners

Near Field Communications (NFC) hit the news again last week with the launch of the Apple iPhone 6 and Apple Pay. While NFC has been in use for two decades, many believe that Apple has added the momentum necessary to make it mainstream. It is probably time for you to understand what NFC is! .........Read More>>>

Credit Unions & Distintermediation

A recent series of blogs from @Chris_Skinner on Banks and Disintermediation’ responded to the contention that banks are an unnecessary cog in the wheels of commerce and could be ‘cut out’ of the process by companies such as Google, Amazon or Ebay. Disintermediation is the complicated term for ‘cutting out the middleman’ which is fashionable in our world of removing friction from interactions. .........Read More>>>

Are Branch Customers Unprofitable?

Digital Insights recently published a report on “Are Online Bankers More Profitable?” based on research covering 5 year up to 2014. The study found that ‘customers that used multiple digital banking services are 51% more profitable than customers who do not actively utilize online or mobile banking’. Customer profitability is increasingly complex to calculate and interpret. Costs can be attributed as overheads or usage based. The timeframe of analysis is also important as the profitability of a customer .........Read More>>>

From Transaction To Education

The 7th president of the United States, Andrew Jackson, said that he had always been afraid of banks. In the last 180 years financial service providers, products and channels of interaction have expanded to ’meet the needs of customers’. People are still afraid of banks, possibly even more so now. The main drivers of that fear are complex products, incomprehensible terms and conditions, rapidly changing technology and a lack of understanding of banking fees.........Read More>>>

A/B Test Your Branch Network

“Lies, damned lies and statistics” have become the basis for arguments on the future death of branches. A quote actually attributable to Mark Twain is probably more appropriate –“All generalizations are false, including this one.” But what if I were to tell you that there is actually a way for a financial institution to measure the impact of a branch closure, the answer is A/B testing......... Read More>>>

A Uniform Branch Service

UBS in Switzerland have a style guide for their employees that recommended the wearing of wristwatches to indicate trustworthiness and punctuality. The Swiss have always had a fascination with watches and clocks! The dress code of the branch employees is evolving as the style and purpose of the branch evolves.......Read More>>>

Should Tesco Bank Open Branches?

Tesco, Britain's largest retailer by sales, moved into banking in the UK in 1997 in partnership with Royal Bank of Scotland. Since 2008, Tesco Bank became a wholly owned subsidiary of Tesco PLC and began their transformation, recently launching a current (checking) account. Although Tesco have 3,300 stores, they have chosen to only support the account through online channels with limited deposit services in about 9% of their stores...... Read More>>>

Sweet Smell of Branch Success

When you want to sell your property, you buy fresh cut flowers and brew a pot of coffee. When you go to the supermarket you are greeted by the inviting smell of a bakery. Companies like Nike have shown that adding scents to their stores increases the intent to purchase by 80%. Should your branches have a signature scent?...... Read More>>>

Agile Approach to Branch Design

More financial institutions are taking an innovation approach to their branch design by trying different formats to see what works. Financial institutions are fighting a huge internal battle to make their organization 'agile' [A term that has gained popularity in the software project world to mean iterative and incremental development]. There is an acceptance / understanding that...... Read More>>>

Survey Your Customers - Anonymously

Does what your customers are saying translate to the service that you believe you are offering them? When have you last engaged with them on more than just a financial transaction? Are you offering services just because everybody else is? Does anonymous survey work well at the branch...... Read More>>>

Do Business Customers Need Branches?

The future for branches is a source of active discussion and debate and rightly so! Analysis by McKinsey & Company on the needs of the customer for a seamless multi-channel strategy and shows that 65% of customers interact with multiple channels...... Read More>>>

Your Branch and the Internet of Things

The internet of things will be all pervasive in our lives as devices become more intelligent. According to Silicon Valley Bank the Internet of Things offers the promise of enormous socio-economic benefits, but the providers of innovation capital will continue to proceed cautiously until use cases evolve:..... Read More>>>

Measuring Your Branch Strategy Success

Draw a line in the sand - know where you are starting from and how to measure where you get to. Understanding your customer base, understanding your products, and understanding your staff is not a qualitative exercise, it is a quantative one. Unfortunately this will mean quantifying some qualitative attributes of your institution:......Read More>>>

Rethinking Branch Channel: 6 Key Questions

Bank’s channel strategy was to adopt a ‘me too’ strategy to channels, products and customer interaction. Banks differentiated their branches with bold coloured signage rather than unique products or customer experience. The world has changed. Banks must now design their branch network strategy that is appropriate for their customers, location, business model and style. ....... Read More>>>