This interview was brought to you with support from Loomis, a NACS member.
ALEXANDRIA, Va.—Convenience retailing is a cash intensive business, and managing that cash is one of the many operational challenges c-stores face every day. NACS Magazine recently interviewed Lenny Evansek, senior vice president of SafePoint Business Development, Loomis US LLC, about the benefits of a centralized cash management system.
Q: Retailers have many operational challenges these days. How can retailers make the cash management process one less thing to worry about?
A: Nearly every c-store location has one or more cash management or counterfeit detection systems in their store. The challenge lies in that most tools are working independently from one another and work in an offline environment, which means there is no information transmitted to or from a regional or headquarters office. Deposits are still physically taken to the bank by the store manager or picked up by armor car service without provisional credit, meaning the business is delayed in receiving credit for their deposit while also lacking the visibility into cash operations that a connected smart safe provides.
Q: Why is a connected system more effective?
A: One automated system and supplier for all cash management needs, such as SafePoint, can streamline processes. This includes automating cash counting, verification, counterfeit detection, provisional credit through a financial institution, armor car pick up, maintenance, and near real-time reporting of what cash is deposited or what change is being dispensed at any store, at an aggregate level, at any time, and by any person.
This centralization can save each individual store both time and money. Managers don't need to spend time counting cash deposits, refilling tills, driving to the bank, managing multiple vendor agreements, or reconciling daily cash deposits and change orders. This time savings for employees can range from 45 minutes to 2.5 hours, and cash shrink can be reduced by 75%. With the Loomis guarantee of funds, we’ll cover the cash in the event of a loss due to third-party theft or loss.
Q: Retail operations are still largely cash-run enterprises. How does having a centralized system help?
A: C-stores typically transact 35% or more of their daily sales in cash. An interconnected and online system such as SafePoint demystifies what is happening with cash deposits and change orders and provides actionable data such as how much cash has been deposited into any device at any given time during the day, who is depositing it, when, and how much change is available to dispense. Loomis Direct provides remote user management, the ability to run customized reports, capability to have back office data integration and performance management metrics such as device up time, pick up information and characteristics on how the system is being used.
Q: A centralized system is good for employees, too, is that right?
A: A single system with multifunctions reduces the number of processes that need to be followed and means that fewer employees need to be trained with fewer training manuals. Service support desks also become less critical. Employees can focus on their customers and not worry about not understanding how to use a specific tool. SafePoint’s video tutorials integrated on the safe walk employees through more than 50 different functions.
Q: And having a secure, end-to-end system is a welcome addition to the process.
A: Definitely. An end-to-end system closes the loop on the cash supply chain. It automates, controls and reports cash activity from the time a bill is inserted into the safe to the time it is picked up by armor car and deposited into the bank. This is important to all retailers because it takes the guesswork out of identifying where their money is. It provides next day access to cash, which enables them to put their money to use faster, and it allows for much faster deposit reconciliation. SafePoint owns, controls and provides end-to-end visibility of the bill throughout the entire process. One solution, one supplier.
This interview, “A Connected System,” was featured in the October 2020 issue of NACS Magazine.