Part I: SLOW ATM USER: Go to a busy ATM machine (e.g., in the student union at noon) and take at least 5 full minutes to complete a transaction. (Watch other people using the mirror and your peripheral vision.) Describe the reactions.
Part II: Fast I went to the Union on Friday March 11th at noon to start the experiment. When I arrived, I was quite nervous to actually pull off this assignment. I first stood in line for the Bank of America ATM behind two other customers. I noticed that the two people in front of me took about an average of a minute to withdraw their cash and get on their way. When it was my turn, I first acted as if I could not find my ATM card. I put my purse down on the floor in front of the ATM and began to act as if I was scrambling for my debit card. I heard an older lady exhale deeply and after about 15 seconds. At that point I found my card and began my transaction.
After swiping my card, I bypassed the ‘Fast Cash’ option and began checking the account balance on all three of my accounts. I began glanced at the mirrors and noted the older lady standing behind me was becoming quite upset. She began to tap her heel on the floor and looking at her wrist watch. I also noticed the line began to grow as two girls stood in line behind the older lady. I used the option to print my account balance, when I did this the older lady began to step forward as if she thought I was finished. When she saw me reenter my card she said “Excuse me, how much longer will you be”. When she said this, I really became nervous. After about 25 seconds more the older lady behind me said “This is absolutely ridiculous” and stormed out of the Union.
I continued for the rest of the five minutes while noticing others talking to their friends about how long I was taking at the ATM. Others asked “What’s the problem”, “Is the ATM broken”. I never responded just hovered close to the ATM and acted as if I was withdrawing money. All in all, this was probably one of the most nervous and anxious five minutes of my life. Clearly the norm for ATM use is to complete your transaction as fast as possible usually less than 35 seconds.
Part III. Reflect Because of the reactions I received from other Bank of America customers standing in line behind me, I concluded that the ATM norm is to complete your transaction as quickly as possible. Also, it seemed to be a norm that when a receipt is printed from the ATM that signified that your transaction was complete but sometime people forget that you given the option to print your account balances. I noticed that not many people use this option (at least not at a walk-up ATM). Because the company realized that customers were interested in complete the fastest transactions possible, I noticed the Bank of America ATMs now have a new option for Fast Cash. In this option, customers are able to complete their withdrawals of ten dollar increments in about 8 seconds.