DBS boosts branch network with new self-service options

Customers will be able to replace ATM or debit cards outside traditional banking hours.

DBS is boosting its self-service options in branches in response to customers seeking quicker, socially distanced and more personalised branch banking services, and amidst growing preference for digital platforms amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a press release, the bank outlined self-service options that include a wider range of complex transactions such as replacing ATM or debit cards outside traditional banking hours. Other services include self-service machines that will allow customers to deposit daily business earnings in coins and dollar notes, and instantly update account balances.

Digital ambassadors will be on-site, ready to guide customers who need help with the self-service machines.

DBS also plans to enhance its personalised financial planning advisory at branches. The new branches will feature more wealth planning managers able to provide personal financial planning consultations to help customers achieve financial wellness.

Some branches will even have interactive tools that customers can engage with, and to start thinking about their financial planning needs, the bank added.

The transformation began with the DBS Takashimaya branch, which opened last month, and will reportedly continue to be rolled out across at least one-third of the bank’s branch network over the next 12 to 18 months.

The bank is seeing an unprecedented boom in digital banking adoption with customers shifting en masse to digital platforms amidst the COVID-19 six years after it launched its digitalisation strategy, said Shee Tse Koon, DBS Singapore country head.

“Our aim is to provide banking solutions that ensure customers’ lives and their access to both digital and physical banking services remain undisrupted. Our new branches will therefore complement our digital banking services to provide what we call a ‘phygital’ banking experience that retains our ‘human touch’ in the form of face-to-face assistance and consultations,” he added.

DBS shared that over 95% of their regular banking transactions—fund transfers, remittances, bill payments—are now done digitally via their digibank mobile app or online platform.

Compared to 2019, the bank has also seen twice as many new monthly active users on its digibank services and double the number of outgoing PayNow transactions.

Customers reportedly perform four in five of the most popular over-the-counter transactions online or at self-service machines. As a result, fewer are going to bank branches, with DBS’ monthly average visits per branch down by 15% since the pandemic began.

Customers have also been transacting less post-Circuit Breaker, with monthly average over-the-counter cash deposits/withdrawals per branch having dropped by 22%, DBS added.

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

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