Société Générale has chosen Lonsdale to design its new banking branch model, with two objectives: to reinvent the customer relationship with its bank, and to increase the visibility of the new services, giving customers reasons to come into a branch.
As the new motto for the brand is “Future is you” and the goal is to put customers at the center of its promises, the concept is enriched with a resolutely customer centric vision.
To support the transformation of the network of Société Générale, Lonsdale has created a concept of the branch as more open, lively and focused on communication. Aimed at both individuals and professionals, the concept puts forward a clear and fluid path that supports the approach of personal, family and professional projects.
Inaugurated in mid-November at the Montmartre Branch in Paris 9th, the newly created concept in a 480 m2 area, is the result of a design thinking study.
From the outside, the new Société Générale branch borrows traditional trade codes to gain visibility and encourage customers to enter.
The new layout reinvents the way of interacting with advisers who can exchange with more proximity, cohesion and collaboration. It also makes the adviser more involved in the relationship with his client, and “physically” closer to the needs and demands.
The project was managed with energy and determination, in collaboration with a multidisciplinary team within Société Générale (Communication, Brand, Marketing, Digital, Customer, Architecture, Maintenance, …). From the beginning of the project, different work groups succeeded in one month to create a design deliberately focused on customer expectations.
“The model we deploy around the customer is based on a specific, consistent model that allows us to share more expertise. We are constantly adapting to provide the customer, in all our markets, with the best banking experience at physical branches or at a distance, whatever is the channel of their choice.”
Laurent Goutard, Director of Société Générale Retail Banking in France
The new concept which was inaugurated at the Montmartre Agency, 89 rue de Clichy 75009 Paris will gradually be deployed in a hundred agencies by 2020.
The Société Générale logo above the door, more unstated and legible, is also more elegant and apparent. The bay windows, which now are means of communication, highlight the Société Générale services.
Once past the automatic door, the Welcome area allows the first contact to be established. This space embodies the welcome and the promise, the full attention which is dedicated to the customer. The reception is garnered with displays like a storefront, which advertise the various phygital services, a help desk and a digital terminal. The furniture, consisting of a table-window, offers a range of customizable bank cards.
The customer journey continues into the Discovery Area, a space for sharing in the heart of the agency gathering all the services in a space made for informal conversation with comfortable and colorful seats. Leaving the traditional codes of the banking sector behind, the objective of this space is to welcome customers in a familiar setting that feels like home.
The banking services are presented in 5 different libraries: My Family, My Leisure, My Home, My Professional activity, My Savings; each library has a video screen explaining one of the services, and a selection of objects illustrating the services offered (insurance, loan …).
Backed by the wall of the Discovery Area, the Social Wall aggregates dynamically via social networks all the information of the group, all over the world.
To increase the feelings of comfort and well-being, Lonsdale chose an authentic range of materials (sanded oak, warm textile, needled carpet …) and well-lit areas with brighter lights at discussion points. Supports explain the different services of the bank and the walls are colored with a warm white, linen tint. The luminous atmosphere is controlled so as to humanize this professional space and make it feel like a living space. The selection of furniture with wooden legs adds warmth, the seats are enveloping and comfortable with textile trim.
As the customer journey continues, the spaces dedicated to more confidential relationship for consulting are delimited by translucent walls, they ensure comfort and clarity, and form the 9 spaces called Studios. Behind the slightly sanded windows, the new branch posture is embodied by a consultant beside the customer and around a slightly rounded table. This new conversational space facilitates the dialogue between the customer and adviser thanks to a shared screen and a vitreous flipchart. And for ease of use, each appointment studio is bookable online.
The team of advisers share a collaborative space of 15 stations, called the Campus. This space has been designed to provide excellent working conditions, with particular care given to light, acoustics and ergonomics in general. Upstairs, a meeting room allows team to organize meetings with or without customers.