BNZ opens branches for Level 2 with new ways of working

From Thursday this week, Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) will open its branches and resume normal operating hours during alert level 2.

BNZ opened 48 branches on reduced hours during lockdown and while the majority of its branches will be back to normal operating times this week, the bank will retain a range of measures implemented during lockdown to continue to keep its people and customers safe.

Chief Customer Officer, Paul Carter, says, “It’s fantastic to open our branches again and we’re looking forward to welcoming our customers through the doors.

“Although we’re back to normal operating hours, we’re making some changes to keep our customers and our people safe, and will continue to limit contact where possible,” he says.

In branch services

For all customers, BNZ will retain a controlled entry system to manage physical distancing, Express Deposit Towers will remain closed and customers visiting branches will be assisted to use Smart ATMs for cash and cheque transactions.

Banker appointments for Financial Health Checks and other personal services will be conducted by phone or video conference.

For business customers, BNZ’s Partners Centres will remain closed during level 2 and a point-to-point pick-up service for cash deposits and withdrawals will be available.

Mr Carter says, “We appreciate that for some of our customers the move to ATMs and online banking is a challenge and our people will be on hand to support them when they visit our branches.”

Further details on BNZ branch opening times will be updated here later today.

BNZ to phase out cheques by July 2021

BNZ has also set a date to phase out cheque use by July 2021 and work with its customers and other stakeholders over the next year to ensure they have alternative ways to access banking services by the time the phase out is complete.

BNZ Chief Customer Officer, Paul Carter, says, “The number of customers using cheques has been declining steadily over the past five years and the increased use of digital and online services over the lockdown period has hastened that decline.

“We’re giving ourselves and our customers plenty of runway to work with and our teams will be working proactively with customers over the coming 12 months to help them understand the transition and support options available.

“We have alternative solutions for the majority of services that traditionally use cheques and will ensure that by July 2021 next year everybody that uses cheques has an alternative way to access banking services,” he says.