Cash at Kiosks = Convenience

Today, in almost every walk of life, we see the rise of self-service kiosks. The evolution toward self-service has been in the works for several years, but the coronavirus pandemic has accelerated the trend. For retail, technology has opened up self-service opportunities in multiple shopping experience areas, from ordering to customizing to paying. Automated cash at kiosks can now handle many points along the transaction chain accurately and efficiently. For brick-and-mortar stores to survive the pandemic and beyond, they must incorporate new technology and change the customer mindset about the retail experience. The customer experience has never been more critical than it is today.

SELF SERVICE TREND

Even before the pandemic, retailers were expanding self-service options. Younger customers were the first to embrace anything automated, but many older customers still preferred in-person transactions. After nearly a year of living under a cloud of COVID19, most of the public has grown comfortable with automated processes. We now see many people seek out automation and actively avoid any personal contact when making purchases. Many customers enjoy the self-service experience so much that it influences where they choose to shop. Instead of relying on a store employee, customers can get almost everything they need from a kiosk. Automated cash at kiosks enhance the retail experience by:

  • Wayfinding
  • Price check/product lookup
  • Product upsell or customization
  • Special Promotions
  • Bridal & Gift Registry
  • Self-Checkout

CUSTOMER AND EMPLOYEE SAFETY

The reduction of touchpoints and heightened awareness about hygiene is likely here to stay. Conditioned customers recognize safety measures when they enter a store to the time they leave the premises. Retailers must make every effort to show customers that sanitization protocols are being followed throughout the establishment.

There are several things that a retailer can do to show their efforts and make a positive impression on health-conscious customers. One solution is installing automated cash handling kiosks to eliminate the exchange of bills and coins between customers and workers. Although the risk of contracting an illness from touching money is minimal, the desire for hygiene is strong. Customer-facing cash payment kiosks allow buyers to pay with bills and coins without interacting with a cashier. The money is counted, sorted, and stored securely in the unit and does not need people to handle it. Traditional self-checkout solutions tend to be rigid in format and force retailers to deploy them with limited application. Self-serve kiosks with full cash recycling capability can be deployed almost anywhere in the store to allow customers better checkout experiences.

CUSTOMER LOYALTY

In many retail establishments, cash customers have to interact with a cashier, while card or app-paying customers enjoy a seamless experience. As a result, cash-paying customers are penalized with a longer transaction experience. Longer lines and forced contact with employees can make in-person shopping unpleasant for cash customers. This is most evident today in the Quick Serve Restaurant (QSR) / Fast Food segment, where self-serve kiosks are being deployed extensively. However, very few allow cash-paying customers a complete end-to-end transaction experience. Customer-facing kiosks that can manage cash and coin payments are fast, accurate, and efficient regardless of payment choice. Cash customers will return to a store or kiosk that can take their payment without added hassle. The result is repeat business and increased loyalty among this segment of customers.

SECURITY AND VISIBILITY

Complete payment kiosks offer retailers added security and visibility. The machines are unloaded and replenished by a designated employee, which dramatically decreases the number of touchpoints and people handling the cash. This also eliminates human error and the opportunity for employee theft. Retailers reduce shrink and increase profits. The technology included in cash-handling kiosks also allows real-time visibility of cash totals and simple integration and eliminates manual till reconciliation.

The brick-and-mortar stores that make it through this difficult period will be the ones that address the needs of our new normal while still fulfilling the desire for an in-person shopping experience. Self-service kiosks offer an innovative and long-term solution to bridge the divide between online and in-person shopping. They need to service ALL customers.

WEBINAR – REIMAGINE THE RETAIL PAYMENT EXPERIENCE

Learn more about how you can reimagine the retail experience with cash at kiosks at our upcoming webinar with ATMIA on Dec. 2.

The COVID-19 pandemic has altered many aspects of brick and mortar retail businesses. Some immediate and noticeable changes have been in-store layout, sanitization protocols, customer distancing, and payment options. 

Join Vik Devjee on December 2nd at 11:00 CST to learn how you can reimagine the retail payment experience and how cash payments can be just as easy as a card payment!

What you will learn and objectives:

  • How to challenge the meaning of cash payments at the point of sale (POS) and how to manage cash differently in a retail store
  • Cash payments at (POS) no longer need to be so manual.  There is a better way
  • How consumers who pay in cash can enjoy the same “touchless”  and hygienic benefits as those that pay by card or phone
  • How to give all customers the same experience regardless of how they pay
  • How to challenge the meaning of self-checkout…does it really have to be at the front of the store and in its current format?
  • How cash handling can become more secure and less risky in a retail environment with new automated and secure consumer-facing solutions at the point of transaction
  • How staff can become more productive and more comfortable when they don’t need to manage cash manually

Self-Sealing Stacking Bag Technology

CIMA USA, a global manufacturer of cash handling solutions, has seen a recent surge of interest in our self-sealing stacking bag technology.

Our range of smart safes and cash recycling systems stack and then seal notes in a secure plastic bag inside the machine. This innovative process eliminates traditional cassettes that require manual processing at the customer site.Vik Devjee, Vice President of CIMA Cash Handling America, shared his observations as stay-at-home orders gradually lifted across the U.S. “Companies and retailers are cautiously reopening their businesses after the COVID-19 shut-down. There is an intense focus on hygiene, particularly around the handling of money. That has led to very high interest not only in our cash handling machines but in the solutions that incorporate the stacking bag technology in particular.“We are seeing significant interest from cash in transit (CIT) companies, who traditionally place smart safes or recyclers at their retail customer locations,” says Vik. “Stacking bag technology is facilitating more notes per pickup and a much faster pickup turnaround. CIT’s are telling us notes are easier to manage back at the depot too.”CIMA’s self-sealing stacking bag system launched in 2014 with a primary focus on security, efficiency, and ease of use. The self-sealing system reduces the possibility of human error or shrink. It also streamlines the CIT process, saving time and labor. The smart safes can accept bundles of notes and process them at a rate of six notes per second. The sealed bag is ready to be transported once removed from the machine, and the bag swap-over process, which can be done by internal staff, is quick. That means the CIT guard can simply arrive, pickup, and leave.“In traditional cash recyclers or smart safes, there is a lot of handling and touching of money and components,” Vik explains. “The cash cassettes need to be opened. The cash must be removed and then bundled. Finally, it must be packed into secure transport bags while another employee supervises. That’s a lot of contact, not to mention the time and human resources. On top of that, cassettes are bulky, expensive, and prone to breakage.”Businesses that are reopening face significant challenges, including reduced staff and razor-thin margins. With concerns still elevated about COVID-19, retailers and managers are looking for solutions incorporating hygiene and sanitation while maximizing returns on investments. CIMA cash recyclers and smart safes with SSSB technology can address many of these issues for cash-intensive businesses.“I strongly believe that cash will still be a significant part of the economy,” Vik says. “There are millions of underbanked or unbanked consumers who transact in notes and coins. Shutting them out of the economic recovery would be a mistake. This system is the perfect choice for retailers of any size who want to provide safety and automation for their customers and staff in a post-COVID-19 world.”

Secure Cash & Transport Assoc. Member Spotlight – Vik Devjee

We are pleased to feature SCTA member, CIMA Cash Handling America Inc., and its Vice President, Vik Devjee, in this month’s member spotlight.

Q: How does your company work within the cash industry? 

A: CIMA Cash Handling America Inc. is the wholly-owned US subsidiary of CIMA S.p.A. (Italy). CIMA is a global manufacturer of cash handling solutions that help businesses significantly reduce the cost of managing cash. We supply a broad range of smart safes, back office/front of store recycling systems, and software to businesses across banking/financial institutions, retail, hospitality, and gaming.

Q: What is the one thing you want other SCTA member organizations to know about your company? 

A: We manufacture a broad range of cash automation, fit-for-purpose solutions that align with any specified requirements. We do not believe in a one-size-fits-all approach, and that’s why we have the industry’s most diverse range of cash handling solutions.

Q: What drew your organization to become a member of the SCTA? 

A: The networking opportunity to become better connected to key industry players in the cash industry. Last year’s conference was my first SCTA conference, and it certainly validated the diversity of the audience from end-users, to vendors, to industry alliances.

Q: What are the biggest changes you expect in the future of the cash industry? Why? 

A: At a high level, I see much greater investment across all segments in the automation of cash and across all technology categories (TCRs, smart safes, back-office recyclers, consumer-facing recyclers). The cost of technology has come down, greater competition, and increased labor costs are all drivers towards a faster ROI and greater adoption of solutions.

Q: What is an exciting development in the industry you’ve recently seen? What excites you about it? 

A: I truly believe there will be a significant shift towards consumer-facing cash handling applications with automating the cash payment process at the point-of-sale (traditional lane or self-service kiosk). Traditional methods of automating the cash handling process and the transportation of cash will be challenged due to COVID-19 and the increased costs of managing cash. Staff/customer safety and automation will be top of mind for businesses.

Q: What are the biggest challenges the cash industry will face in the next 1-3 years? Why? 

A: I think the ongoing battle of cash vs. cashless will continue. I strongly believe more states will impose restrictions on retail businesses that refuse to accept cash. However, cash as a payment instrument will continue to face more pressure as other platforms enter the market, and existing digital ones mature. As a result, reducing the cost of managing cash for businesses will be more important over the next 3 years and so we will certainly see increased spend.

Retail Cash Management in a Coronavirus World

With the onset of coronavirus nationally, concerns around safe and hygienic retail cash management have become a concern. CIMA America offers solutions that are safe and hygienic and can also save you time and money. 

The rapid spread of the coronavirus has brought the world economy to a grinding halt. Every facet of commerce, from the multimillion-dollar transaction to the simple act of grocery shopping, has been altered. Early reports that paper money could harbor the virus spurred many retailers to demand digital or card payments. Not only has that claim been debunked by the experts, but refusing cash payments hurts millions of Americans without bank accounts or access to credit or debit cards. According to the World Health Organization, the danger is minimal. The risk posed by handling a paper note or coin is less than touching other common surfaces. Doorknobs, elevator buttons, handrails, or credit cards are just as likely to retain viral matter. Vigilant hand washing after touching any foreign surface or object is still the best defense against transmission.

Despite some negative perceptions, paper notes and coins will continue to be a significant part of the U.S. economy. Consumers withdrew large amounts of cash at the outset of the pandemic because it represented tangible value. According to the Federal Reserve, cash accounts for:

49% of all payments under $10
42% of payments less than $25
32% of all purchases

After weeks of lockdown, people have been conditioned to maintain their distance and touch as few surfaces as possible. This behavior is likely to resurface during annual flu seasons. In response to this new mindset, business entities and retailers must consider implementing immediate measures that address concerns and behavior about retail cash management. Retailers need to make their customers and workers more comfortable by minimizing the contact points between people and cash. Automation solutions are immediately available, and the benefits go well beyond hygiene and health.

Smart safes are the most widely deployed cash management solution in the market today. They provide a low-cost answer to securing cash in a retail environment. These solutions only offer cash depositing and are not designed to dispense money out. Nevertheless, they do offer retailers the ability to secure cash soon after it has been collected.

Cash recyclers were historically only used by larger retailers with very high cash volumes. Now, cash recyclers are available in a range of models and are customizable to almost any size business. The benefits are immediate:

  • Eliminate multiple touchpoints – In a manual process, notes and coins must go through multiple hand-to-hand exchanges between cashiers, cash office staff, and management. Receiving notes and coins directly from the recycler for floats and then depositing end of shift funds means that fewer people need to handle the money.
  • Reclaim valuable labor – Counting money in the cash room requires trusted employees and managers to step away from customer-centered activities to count manually, recount, and prepare floats or reconcile end of shift funds. A cash recycler automates and speeds this process. It takes fewer employees less time to complete this task. Workers can focus on more important things, such as replenishing stock or serving customers.
  • Reduce errors and shrink – Automation can eliminate human error and theft. Businesses keep more of the money they earn.

Traditionally, cash cassettes inside a smart safe or cash recycler need to be opened, cash removed, and sometimes bundled and then packed into secure transport bags. Newer smart safes and recyclers from CIMA incorporate self-sealing stacking bag technology that eliminates the need for cassettes to be manually “decashed”. Notes are sealed in a secure plastic bag inside the safe and ready to be transported when removed.  No exposed cash, no need for someone to remain in the cash room longer than just a quick pick up.

  • POS Cash Recyclers are fully automated, customer-facing teller stations used in a wide range of businesses. These cash recyclers can be used as staff-assisted devices, or as self-service kiosks.
  • A clean solution where hygiene is essential – Cash is paid directly into the recycler, and change is dispensed directly to the customer. The machine itself can be wiped down and disinfected.
  • Reduced labor costs – Fewer staff are required to process payments. The employees can spend time on customer service activities or other business tasks.
    Increased security – Cash is collected, recorded, accounted for, and secured in the recycler until ready for transport by CIT service.

Reduce the Cost of Managing Cash

SMART SAFES

Our note deposit solutions incorporate our innovative self-sealing stacking bag technology that eliminates the need for cassettes. This saves CIT time-on-site and eliminates costs due to cassette repairs and replacements. CIT note processing time back at the depot is also significantly reduced. We will also showcase our bulk coin deposit solution allowing for a complete note and coin deposit combination.

CASH RECYCLING SOLUTIONS

The world of “one size fits all” is over. Stop by for a demo of our “fit-for-purpose” retail back-office cash recycling solutions and see our unique approach to delivering solutions that are aligned to store requirements. This means lower overall investment and a significantly faster ROI. If you or your client is a grocery, department store or DIY retailer, regardless of size, be sure to visit our booth to see how we can help reduce the cost of managing cash.

CASH@POS – INLANE CASH RECYCLING

We are excited to launch the industry’s most comprehensive range of mini cash recycling solutions designed to automate cash payments at the point of sale (POS). See how customers can pay into our recyclers and receive change without handing money to the operator. This reduces cash shrink and eliminates the need for managing cash manually at POS. CASH@POS is ideal for convenience retail, cafés, fast food/QSR, bakery or pharmacy.

CASH@KIOSK – CASH ENABLED SELF ORDERING / BILL PAYMENT KIOSK

QSR / fast food outlets can now take cash payments and dispense change at the point of transaction thanks to our kiosks with a fully integrated note and coin recycling technology. Why force customers to queue at a traditional POS lane to pay with cash? Our cash-enabled kiosks can also be used in self-service bill payment applications or retail self-checkout applications where a weighing product is not needed.