To foster collaboration with its banking clients, HP is opening the HP Banking Innovation Center at HP Labs in Palo Alto, Calif. The center will initially focus on the branch environment and is divided into four zones: customer experience, staff productivity, branch efficiency and infrastructure. The goal, according to Andrew M. Orent, director, WW FSI Solution Development, "is to get financial institutions thinking about how technology can be applied [in the branch]." The concept of (and need for) branch transformation certainly isn't new in banking, but Orent points out that HP's focus is on the role that infrastructure plays in enabling leading-edge capabilities such as self-service, interactivity and cross-selling. "We believe that the branch technology infrastructure that's been deployed since the 1980s " a PC at each station, [supported by] a LAN and servers " is moving to a thin-client environment" based on enterprise servers and blades, Orent says. Modernizing the infrastructure "frees up investment dollars" so that banks can more readily implement the more interactive and customized services that will characterize branch activity, according to Orent. "Banks can make investments in more innovative things," he says.
Katherine Burger is Editorial Director of Bank Systems & Technology and Insurance & Technology, members of UBM TechWeb's InformationWeek Financial Services. She assumed leadership of Bank Systems & Technology in 2003 and of Insurance & Technology in 1991. In addition to ... View Full Bio