Abbey Bank, weird experience.

  Blackhat 14:06 31 May 2008

Just visited my local Abbey branch and noticed that there were no queue’s at the cashier tills. I was confronted by large lounge area with a lot of people sitting down. Next thing I was directed to a machine with a big screen inviting me to touch it, I did, it stated that there were 14 people queuing and approx 16 minutes waiting time, ‘do you want a ticket’. I pressed yes and out popped ticket No 276. I sat down in the lounge and waited.

There were a number of large screens hanging from the ceiling and then a loud female voice boomed out ‘ticket No 264 go to cashier No 3 please’ and the screens showed the same information.

I found it hard not to laugh out loud, all I could think about was that clip from the film Beetlejuice, any one remember the clip I am on about?

From the reactions of the customers and staff I don’t think the idea will last long, anyone else encountered this arrangement in Banks? I know there are a lot of systems where the next in the queu is asked to go to till No X but I have never encountered a lounge area with a ticket number before.

  Forum Editor 14:44 31 May 2008

and hope it catches on. I rarely visit a bank, but something like this would certainly make the waiting easier at busy times.

  Pine Man 15:31 31 May 2008

Most of the time there is no queue because I do it online but on the odd occasion that I do set foot in a bank or building society I can think of no better way of being dealt with.

  Colin 15:37 31 May 2008

I wouldn't mind seeing this idea used in pubs as well. I can't be the only one to have been 5 deep at the bar and after 10 minutes you're the second next bod to get served and the bod in front of you says "5 pints of Guinness, please!"

I’d much rather take a ticket, find a seat/table and then get the drinks or better still attended service, but that’s not the British way. Pubs are for socialising in, not leaving your friends and spending the next 10 minutes holding up a £20 note at the bar.

  Blackhat 15:43 31 May 2008

It may seem like a good idea but in on this occasion there was nothing to read or look at, there was seating for about 15, there were some standing after I took a seat. It might work but it needs to be set up better.

I spoke to the cashier about it, she said that an elderly lady came in earlier, she would not sit as she would have had difficulty getting up again and asked to swap her ticket for a lower number, this resulted in all sorts of confusions?

  Pine Man 15:47 31 May 2008

Surely it's better to have the facility offered than to just stand in a queue?

  Blackhat 15:55 31 May 2008

Yes, the facility is an idea worth developing but my experience today left me wondering if they had thought it through enough before implimenting it.

Most people entering the bank were walking around confused, the assistant who was there to help with the new facility found people coming in twice as fast as he could advise them of what to do.

Maybe more of this, better organised, is the way forward but the staff I spoke to said it was a nightmare.

  Pine Man 16:01 31 May 2008

'the staff I spoke to said it was a nightmare.'

My experiences of Abbey suggested that any work at all was a nightmare for most of the staff I encountered;-)

  ol blueeyes 16:05 31 May 2008

Oh! The banks are well known for it. It's another way of cutting down on Staff and personal contact.
Gradually it will be just a bigger hole in the wall doing more and more operations

  pj123 16:06 31 May 2008

I have a Toyota car and my local Toyota dealer has a waiting lounge equipped with a TV, a games consol for the kids and a free coffee machine.

Perhaps Abbey should try that?

  BT 16:52 31 May 2008

Similar system in the local NHS Walk in Centre. Push a button and take a ticket.

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