ECR Retail Loss, a U.K.-based organization that studies and recommends solutions for retail loss, has released data points on fixed self checkout spaces based on a survey of more than 6,000 self-checkout workers working in nine retail companies, two in the U.S., two in Australia and five in Europe, according to a press release
All were large retailers and predominantly grocers.
Key findings include:
- Most SCO supervisors usually work on their own (59%), with the largest proportion having responsibility for seven or more SCO machines (38%).
- 84% of respondents believe that no more than six machines per member of staff is the optimum ratio.
- Most staff receive training prior to working on SCO (74%) although those who work on SCO only when it’s busy are more likely to have received no training.
- Those who received more training were more likely to feel that they could cope with their workload.
- On average, respondents believe that 51% of all SCO losses are caused by malicious customer behavior.
The participating retailers have a combined annual turnover of €292 billion ($356.03 billion), with a total of nearly 12,000 stores and together employ around 1.4 million employees. Further highlights include:
- Staff training and support is key to customers enjoying a hassle-free experience.
- Investing in more reliable SCO technology will reduce customer delays and friction.
- Staff need more help to identify when things go wrong at SCO.
- Staff safety while working on SCO should be a top priority for retailers.
“This research offers fascinating insights into the realities of managing self-checkout,” Colin Peacock, group strategic coordinator of ECR Retail Loss, said in the press release.
SCO staff shared a series of recommendations with ECR Retail Loss on ways to improve their working environment, focusing on guardianship, technology and design. The report explores each of these in detail and concludes with a set of talking points to help retailers manage the impact of SCO on their business and the people who work on it.