How teller cash recyclers change branch processes
1. Start of day is easier.
When recyclers replace cash drawers, tellers have a secure vault, right at the teller desk. Rather than arriving half an hour early to set up cash drawers, start of day procedures are as easy as arriving, starting up the teller software PC, turning on the recycler and serving the first customers. That saves valuable staffing time and may even eliminate the need to have a head teller on site to open the branch.
2. Commercial and night drop deposit processing is faster.
Whether the large deposits from retailers and other commercial customers are in the night drop box or happen over the counter during business hours, they slow down the teller line and create longer waits, often at peak times. In a manual branch, a teller must sort, count and verify these large deposits. But a recycler significantly increases the efficiency and accuracy of these large transactions by automatically sorting, counting, verifying and depositing the bills in a fraction of the time.
3. Reduces vault buys and sells.
As dual control transactions transactions vault buys and sells require the largest percentage of time and labor resources. Recyclers can decrease vault activities by as much as 80% with cumulative effects.
Recyclers allow much larger amounts of cash to be stored securely at a teller workstation. When they are used to replace cash drawers, tellers don’t need to manage drawer limits which eliminates most of the vault buy and sell activity. This saves tellers time as well as head tellers or supervisors who have to stop other work to supervise these dual custody transactions.
When a recycler is implemented as a central shared vault workstation there are still significant efficiency gains. Tellers may still manage drawer limits with frequent vault buys and sells but there’s a huge difference. Because the recycler is a secured safe with an electronic transaction record, it can act as the second control for dual control transactions. Which means a single teller can perform a vault buy or sell to a recycler while meeting security requirements.
Head tellers and managers who aren’t constantly performing vault buys and sells are available to assist customers and support tellers.
4. Tellers can focus on customers instead of cash.
The typical cash-handling portion of a transaction takes 20 to 45 seconds. In a manual branch, a deposit looks something like this:
The teller receives the cash from the customer then head down for the next 15-40 seconds, proceeds to count, sort and verify the cash, then enter the transaction into the teller software, place it in the drawer and finally resume eye contact with the customer once the transaction is complete. In the last few seconds, the teller may awkwardly try to cross sell another product but the customer is likely ready to move on.
Cash recyclers change that scenario. In an automated branch deposits look something like this:
The teller receives the cash from the customer, drops it in the recycler and the next 10-45 seconds are spent engaging the customer, looking at their account, talking about other products and building rapport. Meanwhile, the recycler validates, counts, sorts and processes the deposit. The teller confirms the deposit amount with the customer and the transaction is complete. The customer expresses interest in another type of account the teller just mentioned and the teller either refers the customer to a customer service rep or assists the customer with the new account.
Dispenses see the same transformation, less focus on the transaction allows more focus on the customer. Tellers in automated branches confidently engage customers in new ways without worrying about the accuracy of their transactions.
5. Teller balancing and end of day procedures are faster.
Recyclers virtually eliminate the balancing issues of cash drawers by removing human error and processing transactions accurately throughout the day. Tellers are able to help customers up to the last minute, quickly balance their machine, sign off and leave within minutes of closing time. Vault drawer sells are eliminated because the cash is securely stored in the recycler and ready for the next day. Vault managers only need to verify recyclers are balanced. Imbalances and cash lost to miscounts and error are no longer a problem and internal theft is reduced because all the cash is tracked at the time of transaction.
6. Cross-selling is more effective.
In a manual environment, tellers live under the constant fear of being out of balance. This pressure drives some unintended consequences. Tellers constantly “fiddle” with their cash drawers during the day, moving money back and forth from their top drawer to the second drawer, performing trial balance counts, strapping and counting money, just to maintain control of their cash drawer.
Because they must perform every transaction perfectly and quickly tellers may resist additional pressure to cross sell, citing that they can’t take their focus off of counting cash. Consequently, cross selling initiatives have failed partly because tellers wait until they finish counting the cash before they switch their focus to the customer. However, while the customer is waiting for a transaction to process, the teller has their complete attention. Being able to engage with customers during each transaction leads to higher referral rates and higher cross-selling revenue.
7. Fewer vault and teller audits.
Audits are still necessary for regulatory compliance but are less frequent and less painful with recyclers. Recyclers meet more stringent standards like reduced cash exposure so audits aren’t required as often. Recyclers assist audits by keeping a complete audit trail for every transaction and staff member who touches cash.
8. More efficient cash inventory management.
Managing the vault is more than just vault buys and sells. It’s also balancing the vault and managing the total cash inventory in the branch. Recyclers capture important data about cash usage. Using this data, institutions can more accurately estimate cash volumes and denomination needs. This reduces costs related to maintaining cash inventory like cross shipments and cash ordering fees. Branches can reduce cash inventory expenses by 15-40%.
Recyclers even improve the efficiency of cash deliveries. A recycler can count cash deliveries from cash-in-transit companies and process that inventory directly into the recyclers. By eliminating the need for two people to count and recount cash whenever it changes hands, branches become more efficient in their staffing models and can more easily comply with security policies that control the way exposed cash is handled and moved.
9. Improves customer experience in the branch.
To win and retain customers, banks must build a very high level of trust strive to be an important financial resource for their customers. To build that trust, banks must engage customers while providing convenience and accuracy.
Customers aren’t visiting branches as often, so when they do, it’s important to engage them in a meaningful way. But speed and accuracy also have a direct effect on customer satisfaction. When a recycler automates the cash portion of a transaction, customers will notice tellers are focused on how to help them rather than how to process the transaction.
10. Makes scheduling staff more efficient.
When internal processes are streamlined, managers can schedule only the staff they need to serve customers not the staff needed for customers AND internal processes.
With fewer dual custody transactions, head tellers are available to jump in during peak periods and support tellers on the line. Recyclers usually mean you can operate effectively with fewer tellers. Or you can cross-train and develop your staff to be able perform different processes throughout the branch.
By automating the deposit, validation, denominational sorting, storage and dispensing of cash with a cash recycler, significant savings in both time and money can be realized