UOB banking on millennials at Tampines 1 branch

UOB deputy chairman and chief executive Wee Ee Cheong, flanked by Ms Jacquelyn Tan (left), head of personal financial services Singapore, and Ms Janet Young, head of group channels and digitalisation, at the opening of the bank's new branch in Tampin
UOB deputy chairman and chief executive Wee Ee Cheong, flanked by Ms Jacquelyn Tan (left), head of personal financial services Singapore, and Ms Janet Young, head of group channels and digitalisation, at the opening of the bank's new branch in Tampines 1 last Friday.PHOTO: UOB

New concept includes self-service machines, QR code wall and collaboration with retailer

United Overseas Bank (UOB) is piloting a new branch concept to cater to digital-savvy young professionals and young families at its branch in Tampines.

This is in line with the bank's focus on offering relevant financial solutions and services to its millennial customers.

The UOB branch in Tampines 1 now features a QR code wall - by scanning a QR code with their smartphones, customers can be directed to information that interests them.

Five self-service machines have also been set up in the branch lobby and are accessible at any time of the day. In a first, the bank has tied up with local ice-cream parlour and cafe Sugarhaus to operate an outlet at the adjoining retail space.

This first such collaboration between the bank and a retailer is part of UOB's "design thinking" approach to create a banking experience customised to the lifestyle of millennial customers.

In creating this concept, the bank drew on its insights and understanding of its customers in the early to mid-stage of their careers or who have young families, said Ms Janet Young, head of group channels and digitalisation at UOB.

"We know that UOB's millennial customers prefer to bank through digital channels or by using self-service machines. Our data shows that when they visit a branch, it is more likely to be for services such as financial advisory," she said.

This first such collaboration between the bank and a retailer is part of UOB's "design thinking" approach to create a banking experience customised to the lifestyle of millennial customers.

Taking into consideration customers' preference for personalised financial advisory, UOB reconfigured the branch layout, did away with traditional teller counters and created spaces for customers to hold private conversations about their financial aspirations, she added.

UOB chose its branch at Tampines 1 mall to test its new branch concept because it anticipates more young professionals and young families setting up home in the area.

In the last decade, the number of Tampines residents aged 25 to 34 has increased by 13 per cent and they now make up 15 per cent of all residents in Tampines.

The Tampines 1 branch is open seven days a week, excluding public holidays. Its operating hours on weekdays are from 11am to 6pm. It is open on Saturdays from 11am to 4pm and on Sundays from 12pm to 4pm.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 22, 2018, with the headline 'UOB banking on millennials at Tampines 1 branch'. Print Edition | Subscribe