The self checkout till has become a familiar part of our lives – the idea is that if you only have a few items to pay for it is quicker than going to a ‘normal till’. In reality it saves the supermarket or store paying for a member of staff to man the till, I can understand the theory, and if it keeps prices down that is fine.
What I have issue with however is the massive variation in the quality of these machines….
Today I have been to Boots in the Victoria Centre, their tills are quick to scan, and generally work faultlessly – a totally pain-free experience and probably quicker than using a ‘manned’ till.
Sainsbury’s on Castle Marina is a similar experience, their tills are not totally fool-proof, sometimes there is an issue with the ‘is it in the bag’ routine. But generally it works fairly quickly.
So why have Morrison’s and Asda both got such appallingly poor systems? It would seem that wherever you go into one of their stores the self scan system is painfully slow, doesn’t recognise items going into the bag and nine times out of ten requires staff input to sort out an issue – and of course the staff member has at least 6 machines to manage so is always sorting out someone elses problem and not yours!
Talking to the staff in the stores (you tend to end up having a chat while they try to resolve the third or fourth error on your till) it is apparent that they hate them – being put on them as a supervisor is akin to the naughty step it would seem!
So this is a simple request to both firms – either sort out your systems or put more staff on the tills!