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How your UMB branches are here for you: Q&A with the director of operations for consumer banking

In March, in response to the COVID-19 health crisis, UMB closed its lobbies and shifted how we care for customers—increasing our ability to do transactions through the drive-thru, over the phone, at our ATMs and via online or mobile banking. Starting July 6, we will welcome customers who need in-person meetings back into the branch lobbies with individual appointments.

UMB’s director of operations for consumer banking, Liesbeth Pittoors, shares what her team’s been doing behind-the-scenes to get branches ready for appointments and what customers can expect when they visit.

What does the UMB consumer operations team manage for the branches?

Our team has input and oversight for all the policies and procedures our branches use to care for customers. Since March, the team has been dedicated to quickly determining how we can help customers effectively and efficiently manage their finances through the drive-thru, over the phone and online. We’ve had to be very creative and think outside-the-box to find the best solutions for our customers. We’ve created new opportunities for associates to learn and grow to ensure our customers’ daily banking needs are not adversely impacted.

It’s been really exciting to see this team evolve through this challenge, and we’ve received positive feedback from our customers on the creative things we’ve implemented to serve them.

What preparations are currently in process?

Our consumer operations and retail branch teams have been hard at work ensuring our branches are ready to handle our customers’ banking needs in person when we start taking appointments on July 6. So far, we have:

  1. Reorganized branch layouts to maintain social distancing.
  2. Provided ample cleaning supplies and hand sanitizer for associates to use.
  3. Installed plexiglass shields at teller stations to protect associates and customers during conversations.
  4. Built in extra time between appointments to conduct extra cleaning.

It’s been a great team effort by everyone.

What can customers expect when they come in for their scheduled appointment?

Our priority is the health and safety of our customers and associates. Every customer will be asked a health questionnaire before they come in the lobby for their scheduled appointment. Customers will also notice we have signage around the branch to help everyone maintain social distancing. We will also limit how many people are in the branch by only allowing those with an appointment to come in, and we will stagger appointments to ensure ample time for cleaning and distance.

Customers will also notice associates are wearing masks. We encourage customers to follow their local ordinances when determining if they should wear a mask.

What service options are available for customers?

Customers have several options to handle their financial needs. First, they can call us and make an appointment starting July 6. If a customer isn’t ready to come inside the branch yet, they can still visit our drive-thrus, call us, use one of our ATMs, visit umb.com or use our mobile app to manage their needs.

We are proud our associates have been able to successfully care for our customers’ banking needs through all these options—and we will continue to do so as we slowly evolve our COVID-19 protocols.

When will the lobbies fully reopen?

We want to ensure all associates and customers are safe and healthy. Since we have branches across several states, each branch will have an individual approach for when it fully reopens its lobby doors. Customers can check locations.umb.com for the latest information regarding their local branch.

What’s been the biggest lesson learned?

Creative thinking. There are usually multiple ways to solve a problem, and this time allowed us to really explore those other avenues. We’ve had many projects on our list, and this time forced us to push them forward and try new things to meet our customers’ needs. It’s been exciting to watch the team explore how innovative ideas and projects can really advance our business and provide a better experience for the customer.

Ready to make an appointment? Call your local branch to schedule.

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