DBS leverages innovative tech to offer round-the-clock branch banking services

Say goodbye to that mad rush to a bank branch before it closes. If you are a DBS/POSB customer, you can now head to any of the bank’s new Video Teller Machines (VTMs) anytime of the day to carry out selected branch banking services.

Available round-the-clock across Singapore, the VTMs are a first of their kind in providing non-cash banking services such as the instant dispensing of Internet banking security tokens and debit cards, as well as handling balance enquiries and change of particulars.

And for those who need teller assistance, the human touch remains: customer service officers are available via live webcam daily from 8.30am to 12am.

POSB Video Teller Machine 1:12

Implementing learnings from VTM pilot run

The VTMs were rolled out in April 2017 after a pilot run in August 2016. During the earlier experiment, the bank received a lot of good customer feedback, says Susan Cheong, head of DBS and POSB branch banking of consumer banking group (Singapore), DBS Bank.

Close to 30 customers were invited to use the VTM over three weeks at the POSB branch located in ITE College in Ang Mo Kio Drive. Hundreds of insights were then gathered from interviews conducted with them.

For instance, customers felt they needed time and staff presence to help them during the initial use of the machine, and preferred an enclosed area for privacy. Some also preferred bigger fonts on the self-service screen while others requested for more language options. Currently, the virtual tellers speak English.

In response, the latest VTMs rolled out have bigger booth space that is soundproof. Other languages could also be introduced in the future. “During this roll-out phase, we want to garner more customer feedback, get more customers to use the machines and help them along the way. From there, we will assess the demand before we roll out more VTMs in the next few months,” says Cheong.

DBS/POSB VTMs also provide teller assistance via live webcam. Just push the help button and you can chat with a teller. 0:29

Speak with a customer service officer online

As part of the VTM launch, 12 customer service officers were also trained to provide virtual assistance via live-video streaming. The month-long classroom training involved theory, role plays and tests. All this, to ensure the important relationship between customer and bank is preserved, even as the bank pushes boundaries in innovation.

“Working in the virtual world, we have to take note of our eye contact and sitting posture. Sometimes we can get too engrossed helping customers, or we are seated too far from the webcam or we may not smile as much as there’s no one physically in front of us. So we have to be mindful of our body language,” shares Jonathan Chua, who was a teller at POSB Bukit Batok Central for two years before he signed up for training as a VTM customer service officer.

“Compared to manned branch banking where we can look at customers, a customer’s face is on the computer screen when using the VTM. Naturally we tend to look at our computer screens but actually we have to look into the webcam,” he adds.

Jonathan Chua is one of the pioneer batch of 12 customer service officers trained to assist customers over VTM live webcam. 0:26

Click here to find a Video Teller Machine near you.