NZ Post looking for suitable new site

The Oamaru Kiwibank and Post Shop on Severn St. Photo: Google Maps
The Oamaru Kiwibank and Post Shop on Severn St. Photo: Google Maps
As Kiwibank in Oamaru prepares to become a standalone branch, NZ Post has started its search for an appropriate business from which to operate.

Kiwibank confirmed on Wednesday, after consultation with staff, that it planned to invest in a standalone branch in Oamaru at the site it shared at present with NZ Post in Severn St.

As a result, NZ Post will shift to another Oamaru location and operate in conjunction with another established business.

Kiwibank retail distribution general manager Geoff Waller said the move was driven by the changing needs of customers, the desire for a specialised banking service and ensuring the branch remained sustainable.

"Banking, like many industries, has seen a revolution in the way customers want to access and interact with our services. Most customers log in to our app or internet banking once or twice a day and only visit our physical stores once or twice a year. Less than 10% of our service transactions now occur within our physical branches.

"As online use accelerates, we've had to rethink the role a physical retail presence plays in the customer experience, and where best to invest in branches. Our new standalone branches better meet customer expectations with banking specialists, private rooms for in-depth conversations, shorter wait times, access to digital services and digital coaching if it is needed."

He remained tight-lipped when asked if the change would result in job losses.

"We won't know staff impacts until closer to the time that changes take place and won't speculate."

Meanwhile, NZ Post remained committed to retaining services in Oamaru and was actively searching for an Oamaru business to base its postal service and bill payment operations out of.

An NZ Post spokesperson said several factors would be considered before the company settled on an ideal location.

"We look at a number of factors during our search for the most suitable business or agency to partner with to help us offer postal services. This includes ... the location of the new partner, as where we can we like to stay near where the current provider is located. We also look at opening hours - often when we partner with local businesses our customers enjoy much longer opening hours including at the weekends, and also parking and access."

No changes would be made to current services until a partner was found.

Pharmacies, bookstores, cafes and other agencies had been used in the past, the spokesperson said.

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