A Long Island credit union has opened a 2,000-square-foot Bay Shore branch that officials say will be the prototype for the future with interactive video teller machines, but no tellers on the premises.
NEFCU’s 13th branch, whose grand opening will be Sept. 29, is about half the size of older branches, said Valerie Garguilo, vice president for marketing and community relations. She said the smaller format will allow the credit union to open two or three new branches per year instead of the current pace of one per year.
“Every branch is going to look like this,” said Garguilo, who said NEFCU is the first Long Island credit union to install the interactive teller machines.
Bank of America spokeswoman Latoya Evans confirmed that the company has at least one interactive teller machine among its 72 financial centers on Long Island, but that further details were unavailable.
The NEFCU branch has one standard automated teller machine and two interactive teller machines that can operate as standard ATMs but also let members interact through a video screen with a live teller at NEFCU headquarters in Westbury. The member can speak to the remote teller, who can deposit checks, dispense cash in varying denominations and conduct other standard teller duties.
The branch, at 2 East Main St., also has two cubicles for representatives, an office for the branch manager, a greeter’s desk, a touch screen where customers can get information on financial products, a video screen with current interest rates and a coin-counting machine.
Garguilo said the branch is open standard hours — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday — but the interactive teller machines eliminated some security concerns and provide the possibility of operating for extended hours.
In interacting with members, the remote teller can ask for photo ID, much as a live teller would. The ID is scanned by the teller machine and viewed by the teller.
Garguilo said the machines, made by NCR, are intended to add efficiency.
She said the Bay Shore branch has five employees versus eight to 10 for traditional NEFCU branches with teller stations.
Garguilo said branch tellers often are idle as they wait for customers. At the same time, she said, members want to be served promptly.
“All the surveys say people want to get in and out,” she said.
Garguilo said that the Bay Shore branch, NEFCU’s third in Suffolk County, will be the model for remodeling older branches and retrofitting them with technology. The branch opened its doors Sept. 6.
David Tente, executive director USA and Latin America for the ATM Industry Association, said credit unions, with their customer focus, have been the leaders in rolling out interactive ATMs.
“I think it will continue to grow, but probably slowly as people roll out different types of branches with less staff,” he said.
Another trend in ATMs, he said, is cardless ATMs that connect with smartphones to dispense cash.
“All the larger banks announced earlier this year they were going to deploy cardless interfaces,” he said.
Bank of America’s Evans said the company will deploy 8,000 cardless ATMs around the country by year’s end.