Following the success of I-AM’s collaboration with UniCredit Bulbank on their ‘branch of the future’ project in 2013, I-AM were appointed to apply these principles to Bank Austria’s branch concept. This work identified two key goals: to make branches more cost efficient and more appealing to a younger target market.
Preliminary research indicated that 44% of customers purely used self-service in branch, so making these processes more pleasant and user-friendly was a high priority. I-AM’s research also highlighted that profitable advice services were often hidden away in branches. Seeing this as an opportunity, strategies were devised to merge Bank Austria’s advice services with their self-service offer in order to improve the uptake of advice in branch.
The first purely self-service branch is already open in the prestigious Stephansplatz, Vienna and requires no members of staff. Bank Austria is investing over EUR 100 million in the new I-AM branch design, technology and equipment at existing branches, and expansion throughout Austria. Helmut Bernkopf, Head of Commercial Banking at Bank Austria says “Our new-style branches combine innovative design and state-of-the-art technology and form part of a comprehensive transformation process by which we are responding to changes in customer needs”.