Helping build the nation's favourite ‘bank’
There have been huge changes in the way we bank over the last decade. Lacklustre, underinvested in-branch experiences alongside the rise of digital disruptors, has led to a significant question over the role and importance of branches and financial brands in people’s lives. Nationwide, however, was committed to keeping its branches open while others shut theirs, serving its members and inspiring those new to the brand. We wanted the experience to be enjoyable, taking into account shifting audience behaviours and broad, inclusive audience to create an atmosphere where people feel happy, relaxed and ready to talk about money.
We were chosen to lead, facilitate and land a transformation programme of the Nationwide branch experience across the entire estate. We started with stakeholder engagement and customer insights, hosting workshops with the brand and identified key drivers and trends that could turn Nationwide USPs into a new and differentiated customer experience. With the purpose of ‘building society, nationwide’ in mind, we defined a community-focussed and commercially astute concept for Nationwide which allows their members to feel supported at a time where unspoken stress and anxiety over money management is rife.
Key insight: Whether a high street bank or disruptive start-up, all must respond to the mindset shift in how customers are thinking about financial services.
As part of our experience vision, we invented four clear service zones that invite customers engage their way, at their own pace. Conversation, Convenience, Consultation and Community reflect the changing banking landscape and the integration of physical and digital connections.
Breaking from the often impersonal, austere feel of so many banks, we put humanity, openness and connectivity at the forefront of the revitalised experience, allowing Nationwide’s people to shine. Our concept brings staff to the forefront by removing the physical barriers of closed counters and providing more open spaces so members can be served in a number of places. It reflects Nationwide’s role as a trusted brand, always doing the right thing for its members and society.
Strategic shift: From corporate and tired financial services to people-centric pillars of the community.
Drawing inspiration from the branch concept, we also reinvented Nationwide's workplace experience at their new innovation centre in Swindon, ensuring that everyone who comes into contact with the brand, be they customers, branch staff or support staff, has the same unifying experience.
“ We understand the importance of face-to-face. We’ll transform our brand on the high-street, creating spaces that are meaningful to our members and demonstrate our unique difference to other banks. The new 4C experience offers our members the choice and convenience to bank with us how they want to, and not only that, our colleagues are loving the flexibility of the spaces too.” Richard Newland
Director of Branch & Workplace Transformation, Nationwide