NIH Federal Credit Union wanted to reach out to a wider field of membership with a new community focused prototype branch design, and to shift to conversational relationships by supporting transactions with accessible technology.
NIH Federal Credit Union wanted to make their branches more accessible and stand out in the community. The goal was to transform the branches into spaces that go beyond a transactional focus and help the staff engage with members on a deeper, more conversational level. The credit union also wanted to shift transactions towards their app and ITMs while expanding their operational support of these platforms, freeing their in-branch staff to focus of members’ more complex needs with a personal touch.
Starting with a new location that was more visible and accessible then many of their existing SEG-focused branches, Momentum kicked off the project off with an in-depth conversation around the credit union’s goals and strategy moving forward.
More Engaging Member Relationships
Momentum worked with NIH Federal Credit Union to develop a new branch prototype that embraces transactional automation and shifts the in-branch focus to more conversational, personalized service. The branch’s transactional support revolves around ITMs, allowing NIH to adopt a purely tellerless staffing model. The layout was designed to make ITM use both accessible and private and to support education around their use. To support this transition to digital transactions, the branch also features an interactive touch panel where branch staff can educate members about the credit union’s digital channels.
With ITMs supporting transactions, the branch itself has no teller line or teller pods and instead provides comfortable spaces where employees can connect with members through more complex, in-depth conversations about their financial needs and goals.
The branch atmosphere celebrates NIH Federal Credit Union’s traditional healthcare SEG group with a focus on wellness and biophilia. State-of-the-art technology blends in seamlessly with a living moss wall, natural wood panels, and textured wool furniture. Momentum’s design team developed the branch design around the concept of a “Tech Spa,” a place where people feel at home, take a breath and relax, while having conversations about their financial wellbeing and taking care of their financial needs.
In parallel to developing their new branch prototype, Momentum delivered a new teller operations center for NIH. The credit union’s new branch design design relies heavily on ITMs, and this operations center features the capacity to scale up with NIH’s ITM strategy and ensures that their members experience the highest level of service.
The teller operations center puts a strong emphasis on wellness and supporting employees. Every workstation has a sit-to-stand desk, and the aesthetics take a sharp departure from traditional call center cube farms with high-end branded graphic wraps throughout the facility and on the partition walls. The workspace also features many biophilia inspiring elements mirroring the branch design, including live plants. In a tight labor market, NIH has differentiated itself and boosted their recruiting and retention efforts by creating a space where remote tellers are excited to come into work.
We believe that collaboration and open communication are the foundation of successful projects. In the design-build project model, sharing knowledge and ideas is fundamental.
Design-build breaks down barriers between the designer, the builder, and the people who will actually use the building. The team works together to establish a shared vision of success. Everyone is free to contribute their best ideas at the right time, when they have the greatest chance of improving the project. On a design-build project, as team members experience the value of integrating diverse viewpoints, they develop trust. Communication increases. Friction decreases. The project takes on its own forward motion, and the sense of tangible progress makes the process energizing and fun. The end result is better branching and workplace strategies that deliver on our partners’ goal, better relationships, and better buildings.
To learn more about the process, visit our Services page. And don’t forget to check out our Insights page for our latest insights into issues facing credit unions and community banks, from branch transformation strategies to the impact of evolving customer experience demands. We’ve also published a Quick Start Your Branch Transformation Guide with activities that will help you plan and kick off your next project!