Wells Fargo & Company is planning to open two 1,500-square-foot “digital express centers” in D.C. in order to offer a new concept of service for its customers.
The centers will provide information about new products and services in a more collaborative environment. Both centers will have ATMs and video-conference facilities, according to Wells Fargo press release.
The first express center will be opened in the first week of May at 1329 Wisconsin Ave. NW, in Georgetown. The second one is slated to open at 99 M St. SE in the Navy Yard in the early fourth quarter. It will be second such location after Daybreak, Utah, as per Wells Fargo.
D.C. Region President John Allen explained the Washington Business Journal that the purpose of the initiative was “to make banking less intimidating than the usual teller lines or a banking representative talking to someone from behind a desk”.
“This is more intimate. People can come in, plug their laptop in, plug their cellphone in, they can make phone calls and they can engage the banker there. But it’s more of a relaxed setting. So it is a new concept but it is the wave of the future,” said Allen.
Mary Mack, head of Wells Fargo Consumer Banking, stated that the move comes as part of the brand refresh for the bank, and a look into how the branches are used.
Mack elaborated that the idea was based on the perspectives of both staff members and customers regarding every function of the branches, which helped the bank change various tools and processes. “I think we are now in the stages of getting good at the new stuff,” she said.
According to Mack, Wells Fargo is also planning to bring down its overall footprint to about 5,000 in the next few years.
The bank faces competition from JPMorgan Chase which is expanding and planning to open about 70 branches in the coming years between the D.C. area and Baltimore.