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Pinwheel Launches Smart Branch to Bring Payroll Connectivity to Physical Bank Branches

Pinwheel Launches Smart Branch to Bring Payroll Connectivity to Physical Bank Branches

  • Pinwheel launched Smart Branch today.
  • The Smart Branch tool offers banks a digital way to help customers set up direct deposit when they visit the branch in person.
  • Pinwheel reports that the new tool will prove useful for the 75% of consumers who prefer to open a new account in-person, since setting up direct deposit is a natural next step in the process.

Payroll data connectivity platform Pinwheel unveiled Smart Branch today. The new tool gives banks a digital way to set up direct deposits for customers who come into their physical bank branch.

“A customer’s account setup experience should automatically include direct deposit set up when they visit their bank,” said Pinwheel CRO Lauren Crossett. “For banks, it’s a simple fact that the customer relationship starts with a person’s paycheck. People are staying at jobs for shorter periods of time while the prevalence of gig-based jobs continues to grow, as does the number of people with multiple income sources, so banks will have more opportunities than ever to onboard their customers’ direct deposits.”

Smart Branch enables end users to use their smartphone to set up direct deposits and verify income without requiring paper-based forms. This new tool will prove particularly useful for the 75% of consumers who prefer to open a new account in-person. That’s because, as Pinwheel describes, having their income deposited directly into their new account is the “next natural step” when opening a new account.

When banks eschew paper forms for Smart Branch, their customers will use their smartphone to scan a QR code, which will direct them to enter information to connect their payroll or income accounts. Customers without a smartphone can use a bank teller computer or iPad to set up the connection.

“Banks see millions of new account openings per year, so that’s hundreds of thousands of opportunities for banks to set up customers’ direct deposits in one easy step when they visit their branch,” said Pinwheel Client Solutions Lead Kate Marienthal. “There’s no reason the customer experience should fracture when the need to set up direct deposits is presented. Now, thanks to Pinwheel Smart Branch, banks won’t need to send customers away to fill out paper forms at home. They can finalize the process right inside their locations. We’re excited about what the availability of this new solution means for our customers’ omnichannel strategies.”

An iteration of Smart Branch geared toward credit unions and community banks is already in the works. Pinwheel is currently working on a product for smaller FIs that need a swift, lightweight direct deposit switching deployment option. Crossett said the company plans to roll out the new version next month.

Pinwheel was founded in 2018 to create a fairer financial system with its API that connects to more than 1,600 payroll platforms and more than 40 time and attendance platforms. In all, the system covers 80% of U.S. workers and more than 1.5 million employers. Since launch, Pinwheel has amassed $77 million in funding from investors such as GGV, Coatue, and First Round Capital. Kurt Lin, who Finovate interviewed earlier this year, is CEO.