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What is the appeal of the universal banker model?

October 10, 2022

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Few elements have had a greater impact on financial institutions than technology. From ATMs to online banking, the tech tools we know and love are making it easier to bank than ever before – and forcing banks to rethink how they operate.

One effect of this new approach is the universal banker. With the value of tellers decreasing due to technology, the universal banker is a solution that keeps employees happy and provides a service more in-line with today’s consumer demands.

For an in-depth discussion on how to incorporate the universal banker model into your branch, check out our previous post. Below, you’ll find out how universal bankers benefit your employees and keep your clients coming back for more.

“Universal bankers are a win for employees and customers.”

No teller, no problem
The universal banker is closely related to the decline of the branch teller. With technology replacing many of a teller’s services, customers have no problem turning to mobile and online banking for their transactional needs.

This puts tellers – and their banks – in limbo. What to do with these employees? The answer for many is the universal banker model. Tellers can be trained on more skills, moved to the lobby to greet customers and help with a wider range of tasks. This is a benefit to both tellers and banks. Tellers’ jobs are evolving, not disappearing, and banks can gain a more well-rounded and versatile staff member.

Unlike a teller, a universal banker armed with a personal pod and cash recycler in the lobby will be able to:

  • Greet customers
  • Perform basic teller transactions
  • Handle service needs
  • Open new accounts
  • Accept loan applications

These tasks can either be performed at the pod itself or in a more secluded office, depending on the need for privacy. Offering universal banker jobs to your tellers can also reduce turnover, since it can be a more attractive and high-paying position.

Customers come back for more
Customers desire a number of traits in their banks. One is technology, which is why the popularity of online and mobile banking is on the rise. Another is flexibility. Customers want their banks to be able to help them with a wide range of tasks.

The universal banker model can appeal to most of these customer desires. These employees can help with many different needs, like those listed above. They are there when the customer walks through the door, so they don’t have to find the teller wall and wait in a line. Universal bankers provide more seamless, efficient and personalized service.

At the end of the day, this is what gets customers coming back for more. If your branch can be tailored to their needs and desires, you have an edge up on the massive competitor around the corner. You can learn customers’ names and offer them specialized products and services. The universal banker model is not just a win for your branch, but for your customers as well.

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