Give Customers Cash the Way They Want It

Customers want denomination choice at the ATM—they want cash their way. As our Software Product Manager pointed out in a previous blog, it’s the #1 thing they wish ATMs could do! That means specifying exact withdrawal amounts (to the dollar), above and beyond the standard $20 bill.

One way FIs can offer more denominations is through cash recycling terminals. Implemented strategically, and with the right tools in place to optimize the cash flow, banks can shorten the cycle of their currency (thus driving efficiencies in the supply chain) and simultaneously give consumers something they really want. In short, there’s both a compelling customer service reason and a solid business case for considering denomination choice.

An Opportunity to Optimize the Cash Cycle

Denomination choice is possible with cash recycling when the recyclers are positioned strategically—and can balance cash deposits with withdrawal demands. For example, ATMs in malls can become a corporate banking tool, allowing retailers to deposit their excess cash in the evening, including a variety of bill denominations. Shoppers then visit the ATMs and withdraw that cash, creating a closed-loop cash cycle that benefits everyone.

Micro-location is key, meaning how banks position cash recyclers at the branch level to maximize cash deposit and withdrawal activity. Accessibility is instrumental. For example, an ATM in the back of a branch might work for retailers making deposits, but will customers seeking withdrawals make their way back to the terminal? (Remember, convenience is everything.) The result would be an ATM that collects cash, without the customer traffic to support the cash recycling platform. The Cash Cycle Optimizer (CCO) tool enables FIs to get a more in-depth view of the entire process, so they can make better decisions about how and where to implement recycling and denomination choice, as well as what denominations are being deposited and withdrawn. In some countries, this isn’t just a smart move for banks, it’s a legal requirement: the bank may be subject to penalties by the central regulatory entity if their ATMs are found to be unavailable.

Personalized Service at ATMs, Deeper Relationships in the Branch

Ultimately, cash is king. And providing the exact cash people want ($1s, $5s, $50s, $100s) gives customers the ability to meet their withdrawal needs through a self-service terminal rather than through the teller. Offering denomination choice is a way to deliver an unexpected, more personalized element of customer service at ATMs, and this is a critical play given the overwhelming increase in online banking and demand for automated services.

Recycling ATMs that offer denomination choice are working for both sides, as it were – for consumers and bankers. It’s a solution that, by its very nature, reduces counting activity at the teller window, enabling FIs to refocus staffers’ efforts on recommending financial products and advising on banking services. In an efficient, well-placed recycler, the closed-cash cycle can drastically reduce the need for CIT visits, cash handling, cash counting and other tasks that can take tellers away from serving consumers with more advanced transactions.

A Win-Win for Banks and Customers

We know from cash recycling research that cash management for non-recycling ATMs accounts for nearly half of ATM network operating costs globally. By automatically recirculating deposited cash, banks can dedicate fewer resources toward ATM cash supply, reduce ATM downtime (always frustrating for customers), maintain higher cash rates, and deliver on customers’ demands for denomination choice. After all, 85% of global consumer transactions are conducted with cash.

With a move toward more automation in branches, ATMs that deliver denomination choice while recycling cash are creating the type of customer experience people today crave: one that is convenient, accessible and offers the options they expect.

Denomination choice is one more way FIs can execute customer-centric branch transformation. Bringing cash recycling technology into the picture makes servicing this demand a reality. Is cash recycling in place at your branch? Can customers choose denomination at the ATM? Let’s start a conversation today.