Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banking Group has opened a one-off innovation lab, called Studio B, to help customers create new ways of thinking about money and how it affects their lives.
The lab is based at 150 Kensington High Street and has been launched to help consumers face the financial world of the future. For example, their research showed that ‘Generation Rent’ consumers face having to save for 59 years to get on the property ladder. Whilst research combining YouGov and Zoopla data found that nearly a quarter of adults expect they’ll never be able to afford a deposit, and that 59% of people say high rents are a barrier to saving more money.
Our core mission is to enable people to find innovative solutions to the most pressing challenges they are facing today.
Studio B is the physical manifestation of our digital ambitions and it gives us the opportunity to lead the way on innovation and shape the future of our industry. Unlike anything else on the high street, Studio B enables us to collaborate directly with customers, big brands and charities on the design of future banking products and services. It allows us to showcase and test our best ideas with colleagues, customers and the public – all alongside a fully functioning branch. It is designed to encourage the next generation of customers to shape banking of the futureHelen Page
Customers enter the branch through a gateway formed of mirrors and digital screens. Large desks – which can be reconfigured as benches- hold tablets to allow access to banking apps, while a further large digital display shows constantly moving content. A ‘lab’ meeting space, private meeting rooms, a café and ATMs line are arranged around the central open zone, which will host a variety of events. The store format means that the focus is on listening to customers.
Most large banks have an innovation lab sited in the HQ, the exciting shift which Studio B creates is that it puts customers at the heart of this questioning, exploratory process, The results of this will be faster application of new ideas that actually benefit all of us, the way we live and consequently manage money has never been in such an exciting period of change. Studio B enables customers to push every button to help in that transformation.Mark Beever