Santander Bank selects Providence, 4 other locations for pilot of banking format

PROVIDENCE – Santander Bank N.A. has introduced a new banking format it calls “financial centers” at five locations in the U.S. Northeast, including one at Providence College.

Santander says the centers will provide customers with in-person support and assistance on digital transactions, a response to the preference among bank customers for a digital-first experience with “enhanced onsite personal engagement.”

The new format is part of Santander’s multiyear strategy to transform into a digital bank with branches, the bank said.

Santander selected five branches from across the retail network to test and refine its vision of in-person banking. In addition to Providence College, the other financial centers will be located in Hoboken, N.J.; Philadelphia, Boston and New York City.

- Advertisement -

“We have prioritized the regional bank’s modernization in the Northeast, while investing in our digital capabilities, simplifying our processes and integrating new tools and resources,” said Yajaira Lopez, head of branch banking at Santander. “More customers are choosing to bank with us online and through mobile apps, which has fueled our journey to meet them where they are.”

According to Santander’s recent research, 92% of middle-income Americans say that being able to control when, where, and how they access their bank accounts and services is important to them, and 86% of middle-income Americans are completing at least half their banking transactions digitally.

With mobile and online banking continuing to be the channel of choice for customers, Santander is focused on providing a reliable, convenient and secure way for them to bank digitally, complemented with personalized in-person support.

In financial centers, team members are focused on offering complementary assistance when utilizing mobile and ATM capabilities for deposits and withdrawals, spending more time providing customers with personal assistance and guidance.

“We continue to better understand our customers’ evolving needs every day to help our team reimagine how we serve them,” Lopez said. “The work we are doing in our physical locations to educate customers on taking advantage of all we offer, including the digital channels that allow them to engage with us more efficiently, is critically important.”

In Financial Centers, the teller and “help bar” spaces are repurposed to enable team members to engage with customers, offices are video conference equipped and seating areas are designed to accommodate side-by-side mobile support.