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Using Your POS System to Influence Employee Behavior

January 10, 2016

Point-of-sale (POS) systems have undergone a rapid evolution in the last decade. Cloud-based and tablet-adaptable systems have been replacing traditional cash registers. Talking about POS systems brings up thoughts about how they can affect customers and the business as a whole. However, the type of POS system a business uses can influence employee behavior.

Employees are key stakeholders for any enterprise. Providing a positive environment where employees feel valued leads to an environment where your customers feel valued, too.

Implementing or Changing a System: What to Keep in Mind

A new POS system can work wonders for your company, provided you do some research beforehand to make sure the system will work well for your business. Training and educating your employees is essential when changing a system or implementing a new one. They may become confused if not trained effectively, which can lead to tension in the workplace. This may cause slower sales, negative attitudes, and irreversible damage to your business’ reputation.

It is also important to keep in mind that a POS system has to be working properly to be effective. Put it into action during slow business hours to ensure it is up to your standards. Be patient with your employees and make sure they fully understand how the system functions and are confident about using it.

How Different POS Systems Influence Employees

Businesses that want to implement or improve POS systems should consider the behavior, wants, and needs of their customers and their employees. An employee who feels empowered through a POS system may have a better attitude and provide better service to customers.

Self-Checkouts – These POS systems are common in grocery and department stores. Banks are also cutting down on employees to promote ATM use, which is essentially a self-checkout. There is some debate as to whether self-checkouts create or reduce jobs; there can typically be several checkout kiosks per employee.

Employees may find this environment volatile; they will have to assist many customers at once should each have an issue. But the customer typically implements the transaction process, allowing the employee more flexibility. Depending on the industry, you may find this system less personal, as it reduces face-to-face interaction between employees and customers.

Traditional Checkout – For constant face-to-face interaction and a stable work environment, traditional checkouts are a good way to go. Employees may feel comfortable knowing that the checkout process is going to be the same every time. However, they have less flexibility and may be bored always doing the same job.

Stability works well for some employees while others need empowerment and independence. Evaluate employees to see if they enjoy their work. If they feel stagnant, consider moving them to positions that allow more autonomy.

Mobile System – Many stores are implementing mobile POS device systems; a customer finds an employee and the employee uses a device to complete the transaction. Employees have more flexibility and autonomy, and aren’t tied to checkout counters. They also keep face-to-face interactions with customers and can assist throughout the purchase process.

Both your customers and employees will enjoy shorter lines and may feel more positive if they can work together from the point of finding the item to making the sale. The smoother sales process will decrease transaction time and allow employees to be more available.

Whether you are looking to improve your POS system or bring in an entirely new system, do your research and make sure it will fit your business. Keep employees in mind when making the decision; they are the ones who provide direct interaction with your customers. Happy employees will most surely lead to happy customers.

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