Friday, October 09, 2015

Bank prunes cash services

The march of impersonal banking continues inexorably, writes Brian Byrne. Significant changes in Kilcullen Bank of Ireland branch are currently being flagged.

As from the end of the month, there will be no counter cash services available on Wednesdays or Thursdays. This includes cash lodgements or withdrawals, foreign currency transactions, drafts, coin lodgement and cash exchange.

Only ATM cash services will be available on those days. Full services will remain on Monday, Tuesday and Friday. The banks says, however, that it will continue to provide 'a full sales and advice service every weekday as normal'.

In a leaflet available at the counter (all five days, and free!) the bank says it believes banking 'is still fundamentally about people, and providing the best possible service to our customers through our professional staff'. And it is committed to having a Bank of Ireland branch in Kilcullen, 'to be here to discuss your financial needs with you whenever you need us, in person'.

Bottom line, they're happy to have their staff talk to us all week, but not to do most of the things we go into a bank to do. And somehow, it's not the same asking an ATM how it is, you don't get the same interaction as you do when you pass the time of day with friendly Tom or Katie or any of the other 'live' (and professional) staff.

I wonder how long it will be before even all that sales and advice and discussion is via another robot, with a hologram or screen 'person' on it, like they have at German airports when you want to ask directions?