The Universal Banker Gains Momentum
By Lynette Anderson, founder and CTO and Mark Anderson, CEO, Banc Intranets
The continued transformation of the brick and mortar environment combined with the fact that consumers and small businesses are demonstrating an increasing preference for alternative channels is adding pressure to optimize every single touch point at the branch level. This means that the teller role in the branch will expand faster than ever in 2016, allowing the “universal banker” to emerge as a significant element in a bank’s retail strategy.
As a hybrid of the traditional teller and the personal banker, the universal banker’s specialty is being unspecialized – or, maybe more accurately, specializing in everything – and they can be found everywhere on the sales floor, rather than chained to a desk or booth. Universal bankers take staff roles out of their silos to function across multiple tasks: basic transactions, new accounts and loan applications and general customer service, to name a few. Playing a vital role in the client experience, the universal banker can benefit from quick access to an information portal that includes the knowledge and operational efficiency to ensure error free and accurate completion of all customer requests including: account openings, loan applications, servicing requests, loan closings, and routine bank transactions. The degree of universal function will likely vary from bank to bank, but the need for a more efficient method of cross-training Page 21 Transaction News is going to be shared across all asset segments.
For the universal banker to provide information, forms, policy and procedures on all products and services in the organization, the bank must have an employee intranet that centralizes its environment, facilitates the seamless exchange of information across all systems and provides relevant training. Information portals that include the knowledge and operational efficiency to ensure error-free and accurate completion of all customer requests (including account openings, loan applications, servicing requests, loan closings, and routine bank transactions) are the backbone of an effective universal banker. These systems ensure that financial institutions create the proper staffing efficiencies without incurring extreme costs tied to additional training, branch layout and new technologies when accommodating this approach.