For independent grocers and the wholesalers that serve them
There's been a lot of industry buzz around self-checkout since Albertsons LLC and Big Y have decided to exit the self-checkout arena, citing customer service issues. However, other high-service grocers swear by them. For example, I spoke with Rudy Dory, owner of 22,000-square-foot Newport Avenue Market in Bend, Ore., and he swears by them, saying that 40 percent of his transactions go through the units and there was no perception of any loss of service.
What is your stance on self checkout?
I heard the reason Albertson dropped self-check was because NCR advised they would no longer support the old software of the system Albertson was using and the replacement was very expensive. Not sure if Big Y was the same reason.
My experience with self checkout as a customer has been it's a bigger pain than it is worth. I avoid this option whenever possible.
Doesn't it make sense that an employee that is used to handling all functions of checking out would be 10 times as efficient at it than a customer who has this option presented to them after a long day at work at some other kind of task, be it an office or factory and then having to shop around a huge store where things are routinely moved so they never know exactly where things they want are?
Why do businesses jump for anything automated for the sake of automation when the customer would rather see a little customer service instead?
I really like the self checkout process because I "perceive" it to be faster. I am in control of the checkout process, which I find strangely reassuring. However, I DO NOT like checking out at certain supermarket chains that do not keep their self checkout lanes properly staffed. When I have a problem, I want that person to assist me quickly....if I have to wait for this simple service, I am not happy. (And potential losses increase when self checkouts are not staffed.)
There is also a chain that requires management override at the self checkout EVERY TIME YOU USE YOUR STORE CARD at the self checkout! This really slows down the process and has actually driven me to shop at their competition when I am in a hurry. (They say that they are "protecting" the card benefits of their customers....the employees and customers think it is just dumb and a nuisance).
There is my point. People that aren't acustom to self checkout and what I have seen the great majority are not, these folks will have problems. Why force them to deal with things they are not used to just to save a few bucks by not having enough staffed checkouts. I still say it is not good customer service.
Not good for the economy either because it eliminates needed entry level employment.