Which? reported that the UK has lost almost two thirds of its bank branches in the last 30 years, so Coventry Building Society is bucking the trend with an investment to create a more spacious, relaxed and friendly feel to its branches.
The design has been rolled out in seven of its branches including Leicester city centre (pictured) and Birmingham’s Corporation Street, with other branches to follow.
Mark Parsons, Coventry Building Society’s chief executive officer, said: “While other banks and building societies are closing branches at an alarming rate, we’re investing heavily in our network. Our multi million-pound investment will ensure that we continue to meet the needs of our members and the local communities in which we serve.
“However, rest assured, our focus for our 70-strong network will continue to be people, with technology there to help provide the human touch, not replace it. Branches matter to savers, and we want to encourage more people to save more for their futures by continuing to offer great value over the long term.”
Allen International, part of the Accenture Group co-designed the new branch look.
James White, design director of Allen International, said: “The success of any partnership stems from the client clearly articulating the desire for change, and then working together to define a differentiating but appropriate design.
“It has been very clear from the start that the CBS team have a natural understanding of who they are, the needs of their members and the important role their staff play in the communities they serve.”
The broker channel
The mutual said 90% of its mortgages are sold through the intermediary channel and that a raft of service improvements have been made this year on that side.
A spokesperson said: “We’ve changed our broker support model so that every broker registered with us now has two dedicated BDMs – one in the field and one over the phone. We’ve increased our BDM headcount by 20% this year to support this change, and we also have a dedicated support team there to answer broker’s queries if their BDM is unavailable.
“We’ll continue to listen to brokers’ feedback and act on what they tell us to ensure we respond to the needs of both brokers and their clients in the future too.”