September 01, 2003

Bank One (Chicago, $300 billion in assets) has a major branch and technology upgrade underway, including the upgrade of more than 4,000 ATMs, intended to improve banking locations.

Following improvements within its fundamental business processes after a series of mergers, Bank One is now shifting its attention to how to improve its 1,800 branch locations. The bank's newest technology upgrade revolves around a three-year initiative to replace Bank One's total network of more than 4,000 ATMs with Web-based ATM systems, says Calmetta Coleman, a spokeswoman for Bank One. The new units, which are to be provided by both NCR (Dayton, Ohio) and Diebold (North Canton, Ohio), will feature a voice-prompt system for the visually impaired, and larger GUI-based (graphical-user interface) touch screens. This shift to ATMs on a Web-based architecture will support functionality and scalability.

This year, Bank One plans to invest more than $50 million to replace one-third of its entire ATM network. The ATM rollout began in some locations in March, and Chicago branches began adding new units in May. Coleman declined to share estimates of the total three-year investment in this area.

"Our ATM upgrade will offer more ease-of-use and better customer acceptance," Coleman explains. "We are on track to complete our three-year plan on time."

While the ATM rollout is still in early stages, Bank One is already exploring additional ATM functionality. "In a limited number of locations, we are testing the ATM's ability to accept deposits that do not require envelopes," she explains. While there are no rollout plans, this test will evaluate how much easier and faster ATM deposits can be and how much paper can be saved.

Building on previous tech

Prior to launching the ATM upgrade initiative, Bank One's priority was to transition several deposit systems, acquired through recent acquisitions, onto a universal platform. "This platform will be the foundation that will enable us to move forward," Coleman adds. The universal platform will support a new Windows-based teller system that will provide more efficient and faster teller functions. The teller system will be installed during 2004.