fedgazette

Internet banking? No, a new banking channel

Minnesota State Roundup

Published January 1, 2000  |  January 2000 issue

A Minnesota bank increased customer service and revenues while decreasing the number of bank personnel. Did the bank accomplish this through Internet technology? No, the bank used service technology to reach customers in a unique way—through the use of small branch kiosks in the lobby of large corporate bank customers.

In addition to providing basic banking services as cash withdrawal and deposits, kiosks are used to sell all financial services. Kiosks offer all the services of a small branch, but with a big difference in costs. A small branch can cost $3 million, while a kiosk, with no employees and 24-hour service, can cost only $70,000. And yet kiosks can supply the human factor that many bank customers prefer.

Kiosks provide a touch-activated screen, which guides a customer to a specific banking area. For example, a customer who needs a car loan can touch the screen icon "car loans" and a bank employee will appear on the screen in full video and audio. This employee is a car loan specialist at the central office who can guide the customer through the loan process. Since the kiosk is equipped with a scanner and printer, the customer can complete the transaction at the kiosk.

Because these kiosks are placed in the building of a corporate customer, security costs are reduced due to a secure communication line, additional proof of transaction and by piggy-backing on the corporate customer's security.

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