DBS ratchets up branch makeover to address clients needs amid pandemic

DBS is scaling up the transformation of its branches across Singapore as customers seek quicker, socially-distanced, and more personalised branch banking services, and shift their banking to digital platforms amid COVID-19.

The bank will boost self-service options while still providing face-to-face assistance. This means that customers can more widely perform complex transactions such as replacing their ATM or debit cards outside traditional banking hours. 

To cater to the growing interest in financial planning and personal investment options, DBS will also enhance personalised financial planning advisory at the branches.

The campaign began with the DBS Takashimaya branch, which opened last month, and will continue to be rolled out across at least one-third of the bank’s branch network over the next 12 to 18 months.

“Six years after we launched our digitalisation strategy, we’re seeing an unprecedented boom in digital banking adoption with customers shifting en masse to digital platforms amid COVID-19,” said Shee Tse Koon, country head at DBS Singapore.

Shee said their aim is to provide banking solutions that ensure customers’ lives and their access to both digital and physical banking services remain undisrupted.

“Our new branches will therefore complement our digital banking services to provide what we call a ‘phygital’ banking experience that retains our ‘human touch’ in the form of face-to-face assistance and consultations,” he added.

At least 95% of regular DBS banking transactions are now done digitally via the DBS digibank mobile app or digibank online. Compared to 2019, the bank has also seen twice as many new monthly active users on its digibank services and double the number of outgoing PayNow transactions.

Self-service options also remain popular. Customers today perform four in five of the most popular over-the-counter transactions online or at self-service machines. With more people preferring to fulfil their banking needs online and at DBS self-service options, fewer of them are going to bank branches. 

Even as the pandemic subsides in Singapore, personal health and safety continue to be a priority. The bank’s new branches will be designed to maximise safe distancing and have safety features installed to protect customers and staff.