Design a bank your customers want to visit

Building a bank today might require a refocus on resources as the country prepares for the post-pandemic future. In today’s climate, bankers might decide to double-down on offerings or explore creative ways to engage their communities through outreach and partnerships.

Building a new bank branch has always been a labor and cost-intensive process, and as the years have gone by it might seem as if the risk (and the expense) have only gone up. But what I see is an increase in the evidence for what works and what leads to branch failure. Operating a successful branch requires an understanding of the customer experience. After all, when a customer comes in for a new loan, to renew a line-of-credit, to open a new account or get support, they have a memorable experience worth repeating.

There’s a shift taking place right now that has banks adapting to new opportunities to serve customers via digital channels. As this trend will continue to grow in the coming years, it’s essential that banks consider this shift in financial industry technology as they design new spaces. Whether working on a new construction project or a remodel of an existing branch, keeping technology evolution in mind will help you create a banking experience that is focused on meeting customer needs for those more complex solutions and services. The branch of the future is changing from “transaction-based” to “relationship-based.”

Understanding your customers — both current and future — will help you to choose the best design. There are new and existing branch models available to choose from. Plus, hybrid options allow for combining different aspects from various models to create something truly unique. Before starting your building or remodeling project, working with an expert in bank architecture can ensure you start (and end) on the right foot.

Sean Raboin is president of Twin Cities-based HTG Architects. He can be reached at [email protected] or 952-278-8880.