Financial institutions that integrate automated technology like money counters can speak from experience about the improved performance of their branches. However, not all banks are certain about making capital investments in their equipment and infrastructure without having assurance that it will generate a return on investment.
One piece of advice that Shahin Clark, CEO and lead consultant of Jamesville, New York-based Lodestone Banking, offered in an article for Bank Systems & Technology is to leverage the power of test banks. What are they? Essentially, a test bank is a live replica of an ordinary branch that serves as space to demo new products, systems and workflows before any of these are put into place at an actual retail location. According to Clark, just one-third of banks make use of testing locations.
"Just one-third of banks make use of testing locations."
The importance of this kind of resource is often overlooked. This can be problematic because banks are often left in the dark about what kind of impact changes will have on revenue and branch performance. Bankers are also unprepared about how any of the adjustments will influence their daily operations. Using roughly a week to introduce equipment or software upgrades into a test bank will give a financial institution a better sense of what adaptation will be necessary among staff and how new technology may affect customer experiences.
This will provide a way for the bank to analyze differences and compare performance. Furthermore, it gives the business a chance to make necessary changes that will improve the branch's bottom line.
Once the testing phase is over, financial institutions can quickly experience tangible, positive impacts of added technology and infrastructure. For instance, an Illinois-based financial institution, Home State Bank, was able to witness the significant influence money counters had on operations and customer satisfaction. At one of the bank's busiest branches, staff often had to handle roughly 500 transactions on a daily basis.
Home State Bank required an automated solution to handle this volume of business, or else it would risk losing customers. As a result, the organization decided to integrate the Cummins Allison JetScan iFX cash counter to process transactions and protect against counterfeit bills. The high-volume branch uses the machine to process deposits and sell to and from the U.S. Federal Reserve. The fact that it can handle a large number of bills in an extremely timely manner is a huge benefit for the bank.
Technology like cash counters is an investment that many banks should consider, especially if they're looking to improve branch performance.
February 18, 2015