7th May 2019

ATMs are much more than just cash machines, says Auriga
Opinion

Findings from the new ‘Which?’ report indicate the number of free-to-use ATMs in the UK is rapidly falling: 1,700 ATMs started charging for cash withdrawals in the first quarter of 2019 alone.

Commenting on the news, Mark Aldred, banking specialist at Auriga, said: “As banks close their branches and leave communities financially isolated, we need to ensure that businesses which operate ATMs are able to do so cost-effectively. Cash is a key part of our economy and changes in ATM operations runs the risk of removing easy access to cash.

“ATMs are much more than cash machines. With the right technology they can offer basic banking services and community services, including bill payments, organising loans and managing your account. The technological ability, customer need and customer demand are there, but we need top down support to make this a reality.

“There are already solutions out there that banks can use to reduce operational costs that make ATMs viable to run and locate in remote areas. For example, software is available that can provide banks with the opportunity to transform how they manage their cash more effectively. The technology analyses at least 12 months of records to accurately run cash forecasts for every cash point.

“These forecasts can be combined with other key factors such as the cashpoint’s physical location and its capacity, as well as the bank’s insurance policy, any legal requirements and any likely spikes in demand for cash withdrawals for example around bank holidays, Christmas or other seasonal events.

“By correlating these factors, software can automate how the bank determines the most efficient cash delivery and collection schedule and processes, enabling a drastic reduction in operational costs as well as out-of-service time for cashpoints and the impact of this on customers and the bank’s reputation for quality of service.”