The topic is still hot and a buzzword creator. Branch of the future, branch transformation, omnichannel etc. to name only three of them.
Even if the concept is old and has been implemented with not too much success in the past (really past not only 2 years or so ago) I think that the time is right now to use it again. I am talking about video conferencing and ATMs.
Technology is creating more and more possibilities to create better no-teller-branches. Mini-branches could stop the negative impact that the closure of branches makes especially in the rural regions. We know that closure of branches will make it harder for small companies to get a credit. Additionally the creation of new companies is slowed down if there are not enough branches.
This means that there is a negative impact on the business not only when the branch is closing but also in the future. A long term loss of business and overall economic power both for the bank and for the region.
Tellerless mini-branches are fast to deploy and inexpensive in comparison to a classical brick-and-mortar branch. It needs more than a video conferencing enabled ATM to (nearly) repalce a human teller.
KYC (Know Your Customer), A4 printing, scanning, instant issuing of debit cards (even credit cards) to name some of the features needed to get the job of a teller done by a machine.
All this can be done in 2015 so again, I think it is the right time now to see this concept as a solution for the still lasting branch problem.
If you would like to discuss more about this topic the please visit the Retail Bank Branch Forum