What Does “Last Mile” Mean?
The Last Mile typically refers to the final stage in a commercial, industrial, or delivery process. The term was first used in the telecommunications industry to describe the final stretch of wiring that delivers services to customers. Telecom companies realized that the last mile was the least efficient and expensive part of the installation and delivery process. Other industries soon identified most of their own “last mile” problems. For retail, manufacturing, transportation, and supply chain, the last mile refers to the challenges that arise when a product goes from the final distribution center to the customer. This final part of the delivery tends to be the most complicated, inefficient, and expensive part of the entire operation.
Did you know cash management also has a last mile problem?
Cash management solutions have been around for a long time. Businesses can choose from various smart safes, cash recyclers, and other machines that validate, count, sort, deposit, and dispense banknotes. The technology and process are familiar to almost anyone who has worked in retail, hospitality, gaming, or other industries that accept and process cash. Let’s follow the path of cash management through an establishment:
- At the start and end of each shift, check the tills in and out (dispensed/deposited)
- Count, validate, and sort the cash in the back office
- Place the cash in a smart safe or recycler
- The CIT crew removes the cash cassette from the machine
- Cash must be bundled, bagged, and sealed before being transported
- Cash is transported by the CIT and processed at the depot
- At first glance, this may seem like a reasonably efficient and straightforward cycle of events.
However, a closer inspection shows that the store’s final steps of cash management are fraught with inefficiencies and expenses.
A typical cash recycler or smart safe utilizes bulky cash cassettes that require significant manual effort. The CIT crew, with store management supervision, removes the cassettes from the machines. Next, they must bundle and bag the notes. Not only is this process time-consuming, but it requires additional staff to supervise. It also exposes the business to human error or theft.
In some cases, actual store staff removes and bundles the cash. Once the cash arrives at the CIT depot, the bundles of cash or loose notes must be processed, adding time and labor costs. We call this manual end process “The Last Mile of Cash Handling.”
CIMA Innovation Streamlines the Last Mile
CIMA smart safes and cash recyclers use an entirely different technology. CIMA machines deposit notes and tightly stack them into a heat-sealed bag inside the safe. The result looks like a shrink-wrapped block of notes. No more bulky, breakable cassettes! Do away with the cassette system and realize greater efficiencies:
- Less risk of theft or human error
- More transparency and accountability for cash transactions
- Minimize third-party fees, such as CIT fees and banking fees
- Reduce cash-room/back-office activities and related costs
- Eliminate manual bag processing for CIT collection
- Cut depot processing time significantly. No need to deal with bundles of notes.
CIMA’s self-sealing stacking bag technology addresses many of the issues that arise in the last mile of cash management. This innovative technology is available across all product categories, including teller cash recyclers, smart safes, recyclers, and customer-facing recycling solutions.