One of the most under-appreciated jobs in a retail establishment is that of the cashier. Contrary to popular belief, this position is one of the most pivotal for businesses both small and large. A highly competent cashier can ensure that the books remain balanced at the end of the day by keeping mistakes to a minimum and by making security a priority. Perhaps even more important, they can help customers to have a positive shopping experience that will increase the likelihood that they will return, perhaps even spreading the good news about the business to their friends. Integrating these training tips into your business model can help you to minimize cashier mistakes and maximize their potential to add value to your establishment.
You can invest in the most cutting-edge point of sale solution on the market, but it will be a total waste if your cashiers don’t know how to use it and take advantage of its features. High-quality systems have intuitive screen or keyboard layouts that are easy for most people to learn. Take the time to teach staff how to ring up a sale from customers using all types of payments, including debit, credit and gift cards as well as cash and checks. Now that mobile payments are becoming increasingly popular, be sure that everyone knows how to accept them as well as how to help customers navigate the process. Finally, teach your cashiers how to quickly process returns. Nothing can aggravate a customer more than a protracted wait when taking back a product with which they were not satisfied.
Train Staff in Security Matters
The most effective security measures often occur even before a purchase is made. That’s why it is essential to train your staff to recognize the red flags that point to potential fraud. Encourage them to listen to their intuition. If a customer looks shady, train them to ask for proper ID and to consult you or another supervisor if something doesn’t seem right. If they believe a bill might be counterfeit, instruct them to come to you immediately. Then contact the police right away. Although the likelihood of encountering a criminal is low, be prepared by coming up with a simple system that your cashiers can use to alert you to their suspicions. Protecting the money that is in your cash drawer should be one of your most important goals. In addition, guard against credit card fraud by instructing your staff to ask for ID before accepting a customer’s payment.
Another misconception about cashiers is that they do not need to deal with customers. On the contrary, the cashier is often the only person with whom a buyer directly converses while in the store. In the best-case scenario, the cashier can be your goodwill ambassador. For that reason, it is crucial that you take the time to train cashiers in the details of customer care. Your staff should have a clear understanding of how to help a customer who was unable to find a product. That means that cashiers should know the layout of your store as well as the general location of most products. When in doubt, they should be able to readily access other team members who can supply the customer with the information they are requesting. In cases where the product they are searching for is not available, show your staff how to suggest alternative options.
Although it may seem time-consuming, both you and your staff will benefit if you make the effort to create a written handbook of protocols. These rules can be invaluable to staff members when difficult situations arise, giving them tried-and-true solutions instead of forcing them to think on their feet. Outline how customer complaints should be addressed, and take time in training to do role-playing exercises to reinforce what is in your manual. Use your manual to also cover what staff should do when they are not serving customers in order to enhance your efficiency and keep them engaged. Finally, be sure that your document clearly defines what your cashiers are and are not allowed to do. For example, specify if they can issue refunds without consulting a supervisor.
As an entrepreneur, you are probably already well aware of the essential role your cashiers play in the success of your business. If you implement some of the above tips, you can ensure that your staff thoroughly understands what is expected of them. What’s more, you can rest easy knowing that security is a top priority and that your valued customers are receiving the excellent service they deserve.
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