Could someone explain this one: Unified Cash Drawer

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by SeerSGB, Jan 29, 2011.

  1. SeerSGB

    SeerSGB Admiral Admiral

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    Wife brought home some lit the other night about the new POS system they're installing. Equipment wise, nothing "new" just swapping the keyboard and monitors for touchscreens and badge login/punch-in over keying in their ID numbers.

    What stuck out was this: They're going over to a unified cash drawer. Meaning the opening manager pulls down 1 drawer at the opening of the day and all cashiers and managers use that drawer, just log in for each transaction so the transaction are divided up by ID numbers. The odd part was that the lit says that software can tell who is short and over at the end of the night and assign liability accordingly at the end of the business day. Not just who is short on checks, coupons, or credit/debit slips, but cash shortage as well. Actually that's a big selling point in the lit: be able to see who is cash shorting a drawer.

    So I'm scratching my head: if you have 5 or 6 people running on one drawer, how the hell is that thing going to know who screwed the pooch on the cash side of it?

    They're not adding any extra equipment, just swapping monitors and keyboards. So it can't be scales or security tag scanners. I just can't figure out how it would "know".
     
  2. Steven

    Steven Admiral Admiral

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    That's... a really good question. As someone who's worked in retail and worked on POS software, I'd really like to know the answer.
     
  3. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral In Memoriam

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    Off hand, I would say they can't. Sounds like a case of marketing selling a feature that engineering was not aware of. Tell your wife to bring home half of all the cash she handles!:techman:
     
  4. SeerSGB

    SeerSGB Admiral Admiral

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    My thought, when she showed me this stuff: "Fuck 'em, let 'em fire ya' for a shortage then lawyer up and demand they pull the security-cam tapes and show were you took the money. They claim to have people trained in Vegas that can look at the tapes and see whose doing something hinky with the drawer, get 'em to prove it."

    I can see how it'd know if checks or coupons or pay outs were short-- don't even need a program for that, just an adding machine and good count down at the end of the night with a breakdown of who did what. But cash short, no way in hell when you have 4 or 5 sets of hands in the cookie jar.
     
  5. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Admiral

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    There is a gnome that lives inside the POS that watches every transaction.
     
  6. SeerSGB

    SeerSGB Admiral Admiral

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    Hey, how did you know the nickname for the company's regional VP? :lol:
     
  7. Jadzia

    Jadzia on holiday Premium Member

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    Badge login per transaction?
     
  8. SeerSGB

    SeerSGB Admiral Admiral

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    They will be doing that, but it still wouldn't tell you who gave back to much or to little when the drawer is counted at the end of the night. They're not even going to pull audits, just punch in the totals to this new program and let it pick who is and isn't short/over based on the transaction log. If cashier "A" accidentally gives back $20 to much, how is the program going to know it wasn't Cashier "B" when the transactions aren't divided by employee ID until after the totals are punched into the end of day report.

    At the end of the shift, they don't divided up the paperwork by cashier ID. They count all the checks, credit/debit slips, coupons, and cash as one drawer-- no ID just as a drawer, punch in the totals and then the computer is suppose to spit out a report that says who did what and who was over/short and where-- including cash shortage.
     
  9. Jadzia

    Jadzia on holiday Premium Member

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    I see.

    Short of having sensors in the tray, or close up cameras (which can both be tagged with login id), it doesn't seem possible to know how much money was removed during any one transaction.

    It could be an oversight on the manager's part. It could be that he has a high level of trust for his staff. Or it could be bait to see if any fish bite.
     
  10. SeerSGB

    SeerSGB Admiral Admiral

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    That's what I'm thinking. All this bilge about it being purely software. There has to be a monetary-scale (wouldn't have to be that big) under the drawer. Otherwise, they'd have to pull the tapes every time there was a shortage (which takes the Retail GM and Security DM both to pull-- think "nuclear keys", they both have to unlock the DVR locker)
     
  11. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral In Memoriam

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    A scale doesn't solve anything either. how does it know you put in a $5, $20, or $100 bill? anything sensitive enough to tell the difference in weight of paper money is going to be thrown off by dust, pocket lint, etc.
     
  12. SeerSGB

    SeerSGB Admiral Admiral

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    They already have scales that can "count" money. I never liked using precisely for the reason you said. We still had to precount and batch by denomination then weighed.
     
  13. Jadzia

    Jadzia on holiday Premium Member

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    Those clips that hold the notes down may have rollers in them so they know if money is withdrawn, or a high tech system may be able to read the numbers on the notes.

    Or could the drawer be completely a different design? Similar to the self service things. It may have slots to accept notes (which are counted internally) and a chute for coins (which it sorts and counts), and deliver the correct change similarly.
     
  14. Alidar Jarok

    Alidar Jarok Everything in moderation but moderation Moderator

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    The only thing I can think of is it knows the number of bills added in each slot. So it knows when you take out a 20 instead of a 10 and it knows when you've taken out two tens instead of one. If you receive cash and put it in the wrong slot, it would know that too because the total bills added wouldn't add up right.

    I don't think there's a machine flawlessly capable of doing that, but I could be wrong.
     
  15. Mr. B

    Mr. B Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I bet the parties involved have not thought that through. A shared cash drawer is a terrible idea.