Could this be the end of your local bank?

Banks are an institution, literally, but we have become accustomed to having them around. Depositing and withdrawing money from a bank

Banks are an institution, literally, but we have become accustomed to having them around. Depositing and withdrawing money from a bank teller is just a part of our routine, however an industry insider is now warning that local branches could be a thing of the past.

According to Bain & Company’s head of banking Gerard du Toit, the big four banks (Commonwealth, NAB, ANZ and Westpac) will come under pressure to close up to 30 per cent of branches over the next three to five years as more consumers switch to mobile self service options.

“Visits to Australian bank branches were down almost 10 per cent in the September quarter compared to the same period two years earlier, but the percentage of transactions done via a teller was still twice as high as in the most digitally advanced markets,” Mr du Toit said, reports Fairfax.

“Everything suggests this market has more branches than it is going to need five years from now”.

Bain & Co’s latest annual report on customer behaviour and loyalty in retail banking found more and more people are preferring mobile banking, and relying less on the physical branch.

With that said, there is still a need for some branches, particularly for loans and businesses, however the average person could be left feeling lost and helpless should their usual bank branch cease to trade.

It’s also an important part of older peoples’ days, and there is a worry that with more reliance on digital means, loneliness and isolation could become an even bigger problem – some of us just like the chat and interaction with the local tellers.

Mr du Toit was mindful of this and said, “If you get the technology right that actually works quite well for Gen Y and millennials but the problem is it tends to alienate the valuable baby boomer customer base”.

So we want to know today: do you mind if your local bank branch closes? Or are you a loyal customer? Have you started to use apps and banking websites?

  1. Once again..put people out of work. Why do we keep putting ozzie residents out of work and allowing immigrants to come here to work…I just don’t get it.

  2. I would have to drive to wherever a CB is for my 90 year old mother. She will not have a card and still withdraws her fortnightly pension using her bank book and pays her bills at the PO

  3. The banks have only themselves to blame, they are the ones who introduced the teller machines and bit by bit the service in their branches have been diminishing, just recently my local branch has been refurbished and is mostly automated to do all your banking. They have become very impersonal and I feel unfriendly places to visit these days. I’m happy to do all my banking on-line however there are people who only have bank books and don’t own a computer.

  4. I used to go to the NAB bank in Hornsby years ago. They had a minimal number of tellers a rather fierce lady whose job it was to try to get customers to use ATM’s rather than bank staff. As a result there was always a queue at the ATM. I ended up telling her that as a customer I could choose what I wanted to do and I told her she would be better employed behind the counter. I ended u using another branch of the bank where I was always made welcome.

  5. Not good enough. Even our local Bendigo Bank is closing on Saturday mornings. I have been in there and it has been so busy on Saturdays – 15 – 20 minutes wait.

    • yet the government is calling for shops stuff to work 24/7? It doesn’t make any sense! The law should be the same for ALL business.

    • The banks control the government Sandra along with the big corporations like coal miners.

  6. I can’t remember how many how many years since I went into a bank. It’s all done online.

    • Sheila  

      Sonia, as a nurse I can honestly say when you get to an age where life is difficult in every way. Especially after 60. You become confused and disorientated and insecure. A lot of people do not have a computer or iPhone and are incapable of doing anything digital, not even the TV is easy to work. I feel sorry for all the youth now who can do it all because ageing does change everything. What about the poor youth who will not have a job because everything has gone digital?

  7. My local Westpac gives good customer service & if you wish to discuss a personal issue there is interview room available! I sincerely hope the Papamoa, New Zealand branch remains open.

    • I bank with Westpac and believe me Mary, they have already changed here in Victoria Australia, they are mostly automated inside the branch with very little staff to help. The day my local branch reopened after the refurb I waited about 20 min for assistance because the one person they had was helping a customer to use the new ATM they have installed. PATHETIC and it’s all about PROFIT.

  8. I like personal service but finding a branch that is convienient and with enough tellers to serve you quickly is a job in itself.

  9. Corinne  

    Yes I mind very much. My bank (Commonwealth ) is always busy.

  10. Definitely I stay with ASB because I have the wonderful relationship with my personal banker. Don’t see a lot of her but I have a huge respect and appreciation of her looking after me.

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