After navigating a volatile 2022, the banking industry finds itself dealing with a whole new set of challenges after a rocky first quarter of 2023. Following the bank failures at Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank, financial institutions are scrambling to control the narrative with their customers and will need to be nimble and strategic as they look to reassure stakeholders that they are equipped to adapt to the changing landscape. While we look to have avoided a repeat of the 2007-2008 financial crisis, many banks find themselves at a crucial inflection point, and are evaluating how they can best use their resources to demonstrate stability and leverage existing touchpoints to reassure customers.
ATMs are still a critical consumer touchpoint, but there is sometimes the perception that an ATM network doesn’t generate significant return-on-investment, especially in an increasingly digital world. While this can lead some financial institutions to invest fewer resources into maintaining or enhancing their ATMs, a strong, always-on self-service network is vital in assuring customers that their investments are secure. In addition to providing opportunities for increased revenue and reduced costs, a bank’s ATM network can deliver unique customer experiences that reinforce stability.
Here are three key ways financial institutions can strategically leverage their ATM network:
Optimize ATM uptime
One of the biggest frustrations that customers have with financial institutions is ATM availability. With recent bank failures fueling liquidity concerns across the industry, optimizing ATM uptime is critical in communicating strength and stability with customers. To achieve that kind of maximized uptime, financial institutions need to invest in technology that introduces artificial intelligence, machine learning and remote monitoring. This technology can provide data-driven solutions to not only detect ATM issues in real-time, but also predict and correct looming issues before they even happen. Many ATM incidents can be resolved remotely, and with the right mix of automated tools, financial institutions can ensure their ATMs are available as much as possible, while also streamlining and better utilizing their technicians when incidents require human intervention.
Streamline digital and in-person services
Once a financial institution has fully committed to optimizing its ATM network uptime, the next key step is to support all the other personalized banking services that can be confidently delivered by a fully connected ATM network. Customers are more apprehensive at the moment and will be expecting more flexibility in their banking experience, in addition to a fully personalized suite of services. These expectations also translate into what they have come to expect from staff-based interactions. By moving certain key transactions and features to more advanced ATMs, financial institutions can provide a holistic digital experience for their customers, while giving their staff the ability to participate in more value-added and high-priority consultative interactions.
Leverage the ATM network as a sales channel
According to the recent NielsenIQ International Retail Banking Consumer and Technology Survey, 11% of consumers who purchased a financial product from a financial institution became aware of it through a message read on an ATM screen. Using the ATM channel to display offers or promote new products can create additional consumer touchpoints in the physical world while carefully positioning the bank itself as strong and stable. Engaging consumers with targeted and customized messages allows financial institutions to realize this untapped potential through cost-efficient and engaging marketing.
Ultimately, all of these strategies work best when used in conjunction with one another as a way to fully realize the operational potential of a truly connected ATM network. By keeping ATMs always on with hardware and software technology that is more efficient in collecting data, financial institutions can have more control over the amount of money they invest in their ATMs and ensure they always have the right amount of cash on hand. This is all the more critical during times of uncertainty. From staffing to infrastructure to operational overhead, managing ATM costs can be an unwieldy task, especially during times of financial volatility. Streamlining this process, whether in-house or through a trusted partner who can maintain the entire ATM ecosystem, goes a long way in reducing costs, managing resources and keeping customers calm.
Every dollar and every efficiency matters. This is true during all economic climates, but even more so in times of crisis. Financial institutions that rely on legacy ATM banking infrastructure will be at a major disadvantage when it comes to generating revenue from every corner of their operations. The technology needed to transform these dated ATM network models is readily available and has proven the value it can bring to innovative organizations. For those institutions that recognize that their ATMs offer a major opportunity for growth, the time to act is now.
DN AllConnect Services supports financial institutions end-to-end, with flexible service solutions designed to help you accelerate your performance and redirect capital to critical aspects of your business. Visit DieboldNixdorf.com to learn more about our DN AllConnect Services portfolio