Being in the cash counting business, we hear a lot about cash. We read about it, we research it, we study it, but most of all we hear others’ opinions and perceptions about it. Often, the perceptions we are given are not completely accurate. Sure, mobile payments are huge these days, people seem to be carrying less cash, and we hear constantly that retailers don’t get enough cash to warrant a cash counter. But, how much of this is really affecting your cash handling procedures? We’ve come up with the TOP 5 CASH HANDLING MYTHS to watch out for to make sure you aren’t losing time and money by believing a myth. Ask yourself, is your cash counting process currently costing you money?
MYTH 1: MOST RETAIL TRANSACTIONS ARE CASHLESS
According to The 2020 McKinsey Global Payments Report, cash represents nearly 70% of global retail transactions, although usage differs greatly between mature and emerging markets. In Argentina, Brazil, India, Indonesia and Malaysia, cash is used in over 70% of transactions. Even in Japan, which is considered a mature market, cash was used in 54% of transactions. McKinsey estimates payment revenues to be down 7% across all payment methods., as discretionary spending is down worldwide.
The reality is that the percentage varies by country and socio-economic groupings within a country. In the US, there is an increase of credit card fraud and hacks, which many studies are saying is leading more people to stay with the tried-and-true cash.
It is important to note the factor that COVID-19 played into the changes in cash use in 2020. Many people went to great lengths to avoid in-person shopping and began solely using electronic payments. There was also unknown and unconfirmed speculation around the virus spreading through exchange of bank notes and being blocked from paying with cash by retailers did not help the overall situation. In our research, we have found that trends for 2020 and 2021 will need to be monitored over time to see how things play out as we return to a regular cadence.
MYTH 2: SMALL DISCREPANCIES IN OUR COUNTS & DEPOSITS DON’T COST ME ENOUGH TO BE AN ISSUE
The National Retail Federation (NRF) reported that shrink averaged 1.62% of sales in 2019, which is up from the 1.38% in 2018.
While nearly half of retail fraud occurs in stores, the other half happens online and through BOPIS (buy online/pick up in store) transactions. As cybercrime is on the rise and those methods continue to evolve, there is an increased need for accuracy and certainty where you can get it. As a retailer, the easiest place for you to control this is in the store, starting with the cash you keep.
Many operations and loss prevention executives are unaware of the costs associated with small non-intentional errors in bank deposits and cash counts. These small bank fees along with the small over and short allowances that many businesses allow can really add up over time.
MYTH 3: THEFT FROM MY EMPLOYEES IS NOT SOMETHING WE HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT
In the past ten years, employee theft has accounted for up to 42.9% of lost revenue in the US. Employee theft is something we don’t like to talk about because we believe that on a whole, people are honest and that you trust your employees to not be stealing from you. But, the statistics often tell us otherwise. If 42.9% of loss in the US is from internal theft, then accountability in your cash processes and loss prevention efforts need to be in place in case there is something going on within your business.
Having systems in place to increase visibility to your cash management is a way to provide an audit trail for cash movement, while giving your employees a tool that helps them do their job more efficiently and makes internal theft less likely. Learn more about our Touch Viewer and LiveDrawer Manager solutions, which all provide real-time data and analytics on the cash moving throughout your organization.
MYTH 4: THE MOST EFFECTIVE WAY TO COUNT CASH IS BY HAND
Human error is often an acceptable cause to an outcome, because humans make errors. However, if you could eliminate costly human error and protect profits, why wouldn’t you?
The most important cash counts of the day often occur at open or close, when employees are rushed, running behind or tired. Cash counters like the Tellermate Touch and T-ix are portable and wireless, so they can be brought directly to the point of sale for counting.
MYTH 5: IT DOESN’T TAKE THAT LONG TO COUNT OUR CASH, I DON’T NEED TO INVEST IN CASH COUNTING TECHNOLOGY
Think about the number of times you count bills and coins a day…
Do you count the drawer at the beginning and end of the day? Do you count the drawer during shift changes? Do you have a safe for deposits that needs to be counted? Do you perform spot audits throughout the day? Do you refill an ATM?
You may be spending more time than you think counting cash. If counting coins and bills by hand, a good part of your employees’ day could be spent counting cash. This takes managers and employees away from other important tasks throughout the day and most importantly, keeps them out of sight of customers, where they could be increasing sales and loyalty.
Cash management tools could decrease the time spent counting cash by 70% and give you an ROI in 6 months. Tellermate helps you optimize your cash handling practices by providing fast and accurate ways to count and manage cash.