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How Citi’s New ATM’s Will Enable New Branch Formats

Citi’s recently unveiled ATM upgrades will help Citi experiment with smaller branches focused on advisory services.

CitiBank has made new improvements to its ATM’s that will move more transactions to its digital channels, allowing the bank to build smaller branches with more consultative services, says Mark Gilder, Citi’s director of distribution strategy.

The new ATM’s, which will be rolled out throughout the U.S. by the end of next month, will feature new and enhanced payment and transactional capabilities. Customers will be able to make instant funds transfers and make payments to linked Citi accounts such as credit cards, mortgages or loans, according to a Citi statement announcing the new ATM’s last week.

Citi has also made the user experience quicker and more convenient by cutting down on extra screens and prompts. The new ATM’s will feature new Quick-Touch Balance Peeks, which allow users to check the balances on their accounts on whatever screen they are on without having to navigate to another screen.

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Much of the new user experience was fashioned after Citi’s mobile and online channels. Citi used the same research and design firm for the new ATM experience that helped create the bank’s mobile and online experiences, according to Gilder. This will help provide a seamless experience across all of the bank’s digital channels, Gilder adds.

Users will also be able to set up preferences for languages and most common transactions that will make their ATM visits quicker.

With these new and faster capabilities, Citi expects more transactions will move from the branch counter to the ATM, Gilder shares. This will free up branch space, allowing Citi to experiment with new, smaller branch formats that support more advisory services.

“These transaction sets and capabilities are complimentary to the branch structure. We can now look at opportunities for smaller branches focused around consultation, while all of the everyday transactions are done at the ATM. We can then expand into new neighborhoods with these smaller branches,” Gilder remarks.

Smaller branches won’t be appropriate for every neighborhood, Gilder adds, but they will be useful for expanding into consumer residential neighborhoods that don’t require many commercial banking services. Citi is already experimenting with smaller branches in Asia, where they are even ripping the vault out of several locations, Gilder comments.

“Clearly the ATM is a key part of our digital strategy… cash has declined but it is still prevalent, and customers feel more secure depositing large checks at the ATM rather than through mobile deposit,” Gilder observes.

Jonathan Camhi has been an associate editor with Bank Systems & Technology since 2012. He previously worked as a freelance journalist in New York City covering politics, health and immigration, and has a master's degree from the City University of New York's Graduate School ... View Full Bio

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Greg MacSweeney
Greg MacSweeney,
User Rank: Author
2/6/2014 | 3:21:36 PM
re: How Citi’s New ATM’s Will Enable New Branch Formats
It's cool to see Citi add some new UX capabilities to its ATMs. For too long, the ATM has only improved incrementally. Hopefully, the new ATM strategy by Citi will force other banks (and my bank) to offer more features and a better interface on their ATMs.
User Rank: Author
2/4/2014 | 1:38:23 PM
re: How Citi’s New ATM’s Will Enable New Branch Formats
Who knew the the old, unhip ATM would be part of so many branch transformation initiatives? Though I guess with all the focus on self service, the AT is the original self service channel.
User Rank: Author
2/3/2014 | 6:33:16 PM
re: How Citi’s New ATM’s Will Enable New Branch Formats
It would be great if they did get to that point; talk about a comprehensive and convenient customer experience (say that five times fast, ha).
User Rank: Apprentice
1/31/2014 | 9:31:03 PM
re: How Citi’s New ATM’s Will Enable New Branch Formats
While Citi's foray into drive customer from branches to ATM is probably matching with the trend that Barclay or bank of America have adopted with modernized ATM, kiosk (unmanned branches), Normally people who visit the branches, normally don't go for service-usual. They visit as there is something difficult to understand or do. Advisory focus in the banks would mushroom the pressure on cross sale and probably there would be some reduction in the teller population as there wont be possibility to upskill every teller to function as an advisor.
User Rank: Author
1/27/2014 | 8:36:56 PM
re: How Citi’s New ATM’s Will Enable New Branch Formats
They seem pretty aware of the opportunities in tying together the online, mobile and ATM experience. Gilder said that they would like to eventually get to a place where preferences that a customer sets in one channel, like the new preferences enabled on these ATM's, will then be applied across all of the bank's channels. So if a customer sets their language preference at the ATM to Spanish, then when they go home and log in to Citi online they will automatically be routed to the bank's Spanish language site.
User Rank: Author
1/27/2014 | 4:46:21 PM
re: How Citi’s New ATM’s Will Enable New Branch Formats
Interesting -- a bit of "everything old is new again" as this isn't the first time Citi has aimed to "move transactions from the branch counter to the ATM", going back to the introduction of ATMs in the 70s. It's also significant that a big aspect of this initiative is to make the ATM experience consistent with the online and mobile experience -- that's certainly part of the omnichannel "mantra" but I'd imagine that ATMs often are overlooked when banks assess the digital experience they offer customers. That said, if the new ATMs are viewed as part of an updated branch strategy, vs expanding digital channels/experience, it might be missing something?
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