Three Things to Consider when Switching to Teller Pods

Avoiding negative customer experiences in an open branch

People walk into the local bank branch because they want to talk to somebody face-to-face.   Otherwise, they would either go online or use their smart phone.  Maybe it's a complicated transaction, or maybe they just like seeing a friendly face.  Who really knows?

Teller PodFive years ago, the interior of most banks looked the same.  There might be a couple of small design differences, but for the most part they featured a line of tellers, a couple of desks out in the open, and a waiting area off to the side.  It's been a pretty static look for the past 100 years.    

Today, we are starting to see some changes in bank design.  Due to relatively recent technological advances, financial institutions are switching to an open branch look.  The large barriers between tellers and the general public are being taken away and replaced by the teller pod.

The teller pod is definitely in-vogue today—but does it really mean that the customer has a better experience?  Placement and design can often create negative experiences rather than positive ones. 

Here are a few things to consider when placing teller pods into a branch:

  1. Greeters
    The one advantage of the traditional teller line was that every person entering a branch knew where to go.    An open branch concept can be confusing upon entry, but greeting members or customers at the door and guiding them to teller pods for assistance is an important part of making members and customers comfortable with an open branch concept.
  2. Privacy
    Customers or members most likely do not want their financial information discussed within earshot of others. Pod counter designs are commonly divided into two working spaces and can be too close for comfort. Keeping in mind the customer or member experience and having privacy dividers or an extended-space between properly oriented workstations allows two members or customers to conduct business simultaneously while maintaining a confident level of privacy. 

  3. Dedicated workspace
    The majority of teller pods create standing environments, however some items such as mortgage loan discussions or financial portfolio discussions are better had with a cup of coffee in a dedicated private sitting area.   Having this dedicated space for customers or members to conduct business ensures a comfortable space for secure personal information to be exchange while still fully utilizing the open branch concept.