A lot has changed since I worked in retail. There were fewer payment methods to contend with, fewer automation and security solutions, and fewer methods for criminals to access funds and personal data.
One thing hasn’t changed: Being on the front lines means store leaders have the daily responsibility of ensuring operations run smoothly while keeping customers engaged and happy. And they just can’t do that if cash management is taking up valuable time.
Recently, CSP conducted its fifth-annual cash management study, Where’s the Money?, in order to get a better understanding of which cash concerns continue to plague convenience store operators, how they differ between stores and what steps are being taken to deal with them.
The 180 c-store operators surveyed reported their biggest cash management and handling concerns, from most to least concerning, are:
- Cash shrink (internal theft)
- Inefficient cash handling (employee productivity loss during manual processes like counting, recounting, reconciling discrepancies, making bank deposits)
- Robberies and/or burglaries
- Counterfeit currency
- Bank deposit discrepancies (fees, time and effort resolving)
- Security of device transaction data
- Lack of information for cash forecasting
- Cash exposure (cash not held in a business-rated safe)
- Inability to track cash flow between POS and safe
- Lack of detailed safe transaction data to resolve cash discrepancies
- Safe not linked to bank allowing for provisional credit
- Inability to transfer data between safe and back-office systems
This year, “internal theft” usurped “cash-handling inefficiencies” as the most serious concern for most respondents, at 64 percent versus 60 percent. Cash shrink due to internal theft is just one of the issues that can be addressed by implementing a platform that integrates all your devices, yet only 11 percent of store owners surveyed planned to implement cloud-based central repositories of cash-handling information within the next 12 months.
I’d urge the other 89 percent to reconsider. Getting a better handle on your currency management helps reduce risk, errors and fraud and helps your employees focus on what matters most to you — your customers.