Spotlight on: Westpac Takapuna Beach
A completely new experience at Westpac Takapuna
The rejuvenation of Takapuna received another shot in the arm during August with the completion of the upgrade of the Westpac branch on the corner of Lake Road and Huron Street. They haven't done things by half. The branch is completely new with striking new colours, lots of imagery to fit in with the Takapuna Beach location and many new features aimed at providing the very best experience for the customer. Channel went along in mid-August to take a look and chat with manager Stephen Hamlin.
"Our relationships with our customers are truly at the heart of what we’re about as a bank," said Westpac Takapuna manager Stephen Hamlin, when asked about the need for the substantial refurbishment. "As one of the main business hubs on the North Shore, we wanted to help localise the branch so that it's not just another Westpac branch but so that our customers and visitors feel like it's their branch too."
They have certainly achieved that with a feature being local imagery that looks sensational. Stephen Hamlin explains that his team had significant input into the final imagery.
"As a branch team, we fully believe in our responsibility to support and be involved with our local community. With help from a project team, our branch staff contributed to the final imagery chosen which we're really proud of and think helps to show why we love this place we get to live and work in.
"We are also thrilled with the great kids' play area that has been created. Children love to come in and run straight off to the play area which allows their parents to relax and feel more comfortable having conversations to find out how we can help them with all their banking needs.
"In addition we've introduced a number of technologies into the branch to help make banking easier and bring online banking and tools to the branch experience." Stephen Hamlin is referring to their "Knowledge Bank" that is a central feature with fixed iPads for customers to use. They also have hand-held iPads if customers wish to relax on one of the couches whilst doing their banking or browsing other sites such as real estate websites. There is free Wifi available for everyone who comes into the branch and there is also a board room that is available for any Westpac customer wishing to hold their own personal or business meetings in Takapuna.
The "new" Westpac Takapuna Beach branch now also has the option of using a 24/7 self-service SmartATM to deposit. This is located in their 24/7 banking lobby and Stephen Hamlin explains that this is available to both business and personal customers.
"This is great for customers as they can now deposit at any time that suits. There is also a change machine in our 24/7 lobby which allows customers to insert notes to get change in $10, $5 notes and all coins. We are encouraging customers to pop into the branch during opening hours as we'd love to show them how to use these great self service machines. It is very easy and once they've had a quick run-down of how it works it is very convenient."
It is obvious that Stephen Hamlin just loves working in Takapuna.
"When I decided to move back to New Zealand with my family three and a half years ago I told my wife the place I wanted to work was Takapuna. Growing up in Christchurch, Takapuna was the only suburb of Auckland I had heard about, and the beautiful beach and vibrant community atmosphere hasn't let us down. When I go for a walk, it's so nice to stop and chat to so many friendly people along the way. There is a real sense of community here."
Stephen's team at Westpac Takapuna is very diverse bunch which means they're really well placed to help the multicultural population of the North Shore. As well as New Zealand-born team members they also have Chinese, Korean, South African, Sri Lankan and Macedonian staff. The team is Bev Robinson, Louise Chang, Rebecca Rowe and Alex Pendarovski (Customer Service Representatives); Helen Yang and Lili Xu (Customer Banking Consultants). They also have Debby Spaulding (Mobile Personal Banker) and Shirani Bakmeedeniya (Personal Manager).
The new Westpac Takapuna branch really is worth a visit:-
Corner Lake Road and Huron Street, Phone 488 4361.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.westpac.co.nz.
I love Takapuna because of it's great environment, urban forms and the vibrancy brought by it's people and businesses. Together we can encourage the thriving community - because help is what we do.
– Alex Pendarovski.
For the past 10 years I have really enjoyed working in Takapuna and am amazed by the mixture of traditional shops and modern spaces. The delicious coffee and quality food always brightens up your day.
– Lili Xu.
I love the atmosphere around Takapuna and enjoy driving over the bridge to work each day. My main focus is engaging with the community and reaching out to them.
– Shirani Bakmeedeniya.
After 12 years of living and working in Takapuna, I wouldn't want to be anywhere else. The mall has great retail shops and fantastic local cafes. My favourite place to dine is New Chinese Restaurant where you can easily chat with friends, colleagues and clients over some delicious yum cha.
– Helen Yang.
With a beautiful beach down the road, loads of great places to eat, a variety of shops and local hotels who often house famous rugby teams, Takapuna is a great place to work. We have some amazing customers that are always ready for a quick laugh and, best of all, we have a newly renovated branch!
– Rebecca Rowe
I've been living and working in Takapuna for 16 years and, with the beach just down the road, you feel like you're on vacation everyday. I love shopping at my favourite boutique, Repertoire, and naturally, I also love our brand new Westpac branch.
– Debby Spaulding.
I've been working at Takapuna branch for some time and love it here. It's lovely working close to the beach and there are many cafes here to satisfy your munchies. There is a Mexican restaurant (Mexico) that I really love in a fairly new area called The Commons. Our new branch refurbishment looks fantastic; it's so colourful and contemporary and it's a pleasure to work here.
– Louise Chang.
I am new to the Takapuna area but am enjoying the experience of a village atmosphere after having worked in a large chaotic shopping mall for the three years prior. The newly refurbished branch is a great place and it's a privilege to invite our customers in to experience the fantastic service we have to offer.
– Bev Robinson.