Teller assist units allow banks to boost cash handling efficiency and create a more personalised and secure banking experience for customers
USA home to a third of the world’s teller cash recyclers
RBR’s Branch Transformation 2021 reveals that the migration of cash away from the teller, declining footfall in branches, and a wider shift towards cashless payments led to a slight fall in teller assist units (TAUs) in 2020. However, the number of teller cash recyclers (TCRs), which account for the majority of TAUs, increased, and it is recycling technology which will drive growth over the coming years.
The number of recyclers rose in half of the 24 markets covered in the study. RBR’s research shows that the USA is the largest market for recyclers, accounting for a third of installations worldwide. Spain and Italy also stand out for having large numbers of TCRs.
Recyclers are credited for their capacity to boost efficiency at the teller line, as they allow for the automation of cash handling at the teller counter, drive up the speed at which tellers can serve customers and reduce the number of cash-handling mistakes. The research shows that such technology has also proven a key enabler of branch transformation strategies, particularly the increasingly common open-plan format. By providing safe storage for cash, they allow banks to remove the protective screen from the teller counter, and thus facilitate a more welcoming atmosphere for customers.
Number of recyclers to increase by 8% by 2025
TAUs will continue to be valued for their efficiency gains, branch transformation potential and high security and RBR forecasts that the TAU market will return to overall growth. This growth will be driven by recyclers, which are forecast to increase by 8% by 2025.
In some countries where cash use is relatively high, such as the USA, Brazil and Indonesia, banks will continue investing in TAU technology to improve their teller operations. Of particular note is the USA, where TAU numbers are expected to increase by 21% over the next five years. US credit unions and regional banks are beginning to deploy TAUs, while the larger US banks carry on rolling out units.
Emily Beeby, who led RBR’s Branch Transformation 2021 research, commented: “Despite rising competition from other channels, it is interesting to observe how banks feel it is necessary to provide a secure and fast service at the teller line to complement self-service within the branch, with the aim of providing customers with a choice of where and how they can conduct transactions”.