JMMB's New Look Financial Centre - A Touch Above the Rest
The Jamaica Money Market Brokers Group (JMMB) Limited on Wednesday unveiled its first financial-services branch at its Knutsford Boulevard branch in New Kingston.
The New Kingston branch that formerly housed only its investments and insurance brokerage arm now offers the full suite of banking and money-transfer services.
The new-look branch, in a re-design process that took six months, boasts a design and experience currently not seen at any other major financial institution in Jamaica. Designed by noted architectural firm, Michael Lake and Associates, one of the key objectives was to create a modern contemporary design, inspired by the client-centric culture of the JMMB Group.
Kiva Alberga, senior projects architect at Michael Lake and Associates, said the unique elements incorporated in the branch include specially designed 'cocoons' - a departure from the traditional cubicle - for more collaborative financial conversations between JMMB representatives and clients. They also have teller wickets that foster easier exchanges between tellers and clients, as well as a distinctive water wall and a vertical garden feature, that provide fitting backdrops to the space.
The central feature of the new-look branch is its client activity area - a space created as a transformation of the typical waiting area - found in other similar institutions. According to Alberga, the acoustical clouds are strategically placed throughout the location to absorb more sound and create a private space for client interaction. Carpets in the meeting spaces and managers' offices also cushion and absorb sound.
Other features include the replacement of traditional dry walls with eco-resin screens. "They take up a lot less space and allows light to pass through. However, it is not transparent, so you can't see through it," Alberga said. The faÁade of the building was also opened up to allow for the penetration of the natural light. "Studies have shown that when employees can see outside, they are happier and more productive," she said.
For clients who utilise the waiting areas, activities feature a special cafÈ station with hot or cold liquid refreshment; retro-fitted self-serve tablets that allow clients to begin or complete their transactions electronically or via JMMB's online transaction system, Moneyline; financial and lifestyle magazines; as well as a special 'kiddie corner' that provides children with customised activity sheets and crayons while they wait. Clients will also continue to enjoy access to free Wi-Fi for use on their personal devices.
Country manager for JMMB in Jamaica, Kisha Anderson, expressed delight about this innovative implementation. "As a team, JMMB is proud to offer another first to financial services in Jamaica. The response by our clients who have visited the location so far has been extremely positive, and this is just the first step in what will be a roll-out across all locations in Jamaica."
Plans are also in place to implement this model first at JMMB's locations in the Dominican Republic, and then in Trinidad & Tobago.