Cash Register, Point of Sale & Credit Card Information Central

Cash Register Training: Equipping Cashiers for Success

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Thu, Nov 20, 2014 @ 08:30 AM

cropped_crowd

Is your staff going to be ready to handle the rush of customers when the doors open? When it comes to making sure customer interactions run as efficiently as possible, the majority of the work falls to the cashier. When working events, the cashiering staff may include dozens or even hundreds of people over the course of a multi-day event. It makes sense to give them every advantage available in order to prepare for the sales situation they are facing. This is where training plays a key role. There are several pieces that can affect how well trained your staff will be when the doors open.

1. Programming - The first line of defense against frustration at checkout is to make sure the register is programmed logically and efficiently. Translating the sales elements needed for each transaction to setting them up on the system can be a tricky procedure. It helps to have someone with plenty of experience on how to best utilize things like employee sign-in, discounts, vouchers, size modifiers, etc. 

2. Keyboard Layout - One of the things that takes the longest to learn is where each item is located on the keyboard or screen. The more items you are selling, the bigger the keyboard gets and the more time it takes to learn. On more complex touchscreen applications, you may be looking through multiple tabs to find the correct item. After your point of sale system is programed, you can provide your cashiers with the keyboard layout or screen shots. If they can have a couple days to familiarize themselves with what they will be looking at, they will be much more prepared for actual sales.

youtube3. Video Training - It seems just about everyone has a smart phone or tablet these days. With YouTube just a button away, another pre-emptive measure you can take, is to share our online training videos. Since the basic functionality of the Sam4s line of cash registers stays consistent across most models, these training videos will cover about 95% of what the cashier needs to know to run a register.  

4. Cheat Sheets - Much like a security blanket, a cheat sheet with written instructions covering everything you may have forgotten help you feel safe. These short instruction guides are provided with each event rental. They will often get emailed ahead of time and are included with each register.

5. Phone Training - After your equipment arrives, and you've had a chance to press a few buttons and perform a few test transactions, you may still have some questions. Calling the support line will get you the help you need, anytime of day. 

JeremyTraining-web

6. On-site Support - Nothing beats the personal touch. When the cashiers are finally able to stand in front of the equipment and try it out, they move from knowledgeable to comfortable. An on-site technician will cover everything from the basics of processing transactions, to specialty programming and is available to answer any questions along the way. Whether you want this service just for setup and the first day of sales or throughout the whole event, the service tech will be there to keep you up and running.

At American Metro, our training and event services can to increase your event's profitability. Being prepared is a great way to start. If you have questions on how much time and preparation is needed to get the staff prepared on your cash registers or POS systems, we would be happy to assist you.

Ask a Question

Tags: Training, Event Planning, Cash Registers

3 Reasons Why We love Events (and you should too!)

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Wed, Apr 16, 2014 @ 01:34 PM


The Event Experience:

Breaking new ground with Tomorrow World, EAA and iPad POS softwareYou really can’t beat the excitement that is infused in a gathering of people who are all passionate about the same thing. An entire stadium thunders with cheers as their team scores. The dedicated followers who become immersed in a world they could only imagine while at a theme convention. Witnessing a once in a lifetime opportunity like a presidential inauguration. Being caught up in the energy surrounding these events drives us to make them successful. We want the attendees to have a positive experience.

Our Clients:

We love working with our wide variety of clients and assisting in making their many different events a success. We truly appreciate working with all event individuals and making their lives easier. After all, event planning is one of the most stressful jobs out there, so when we can take some of that burden off we are eager and happy to do so.

Technology:

We are involved in an industry and live in a world that revolves around technology. We love it, especially when it works. Technology has made our lives easier and faster than ever. Tasks that once took days now take only minutes, and its right at our finger tips. It can be challenging to keep up with technology as it constantly changes, but we will never take it for granted. It has improved the events industry by a landslide. Plus, our company’s technology assists with some of the most important pieces of an event: finances and data collection.

Tags: Events, Event Planning, Rental

(The Worst) Advice on Event Planning

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Mon, Mar 31, 2014 @ 01:41 PM

planning sessionThere are a lot of opinions out there on how to plan an event. Some insights can be incredibly helpful while others sound good, but fall short. We have heard a few pieces of “advice” that haven’t delivered on their promise to make things easier.

“Always plan for the absolute worst.” This advice may seem sensible, but this viewpoint can have a highly stressful and negative effect on the event planning process. If you focus on everything that can and probably will go wrong throughout an event, chances are you will be blindsided by other issues you couldn’t predict anyway. Event planning is a stressful job, so don’t start there. A better way of thinking about it is “always pay attention to detail.” Instead, start with the details and go from there. Have a plan A, B and even a plan C if necessary, it’s all in the details.

“I’m sure I can figure it out on my own.” This type of statement is usually given to yourself as a little pep talk. It usually comes with the caveat, “if I have enough time or resources.” Even if the statement is true, don’t be afraid to reach out to others who have experience. This is especially true when it comes to event planning. Your time is more valuable than you realize and stretched way to thin. Having access to professional guidance and support can help get the job done right, give you peace of mind and keep you focused on the things for which you are best suited

 “Your memory is sometimes enough.” The key word in this statement is sometimes. Relying on “sometimes” can be pretty detrimental when planning an event. From all of the things that need to get done, problems to be solved, people to meet with, details to look into, and jobs to be delegated don’t rely solely on your brain power, even sometimes. We can easily over look seemingly small details that can often result in a very large impact down the line. Write it down, set a reminder, make a list, or better yet, they most likely have an app for that.

“Expect great things from spur-of-the-moment ideas.” All ideas and plans of action start somewhere. Running with the first idea that pops into your head may not lead down the intended path. Brainstorming can have a tremendously positive impact when planning an event. Brainstorming lends inspiration, creativity and clarity to ideas; helps develop good ones and weeds out unfruitful ones. When there is a big amount of company time and money being spent, spur of the moment ideas can lead to mistakes and disappointment that we didn’t see coming. Think about who your audience is and what they want and need. Often times we are biased and don’t realize it. Share your idea with potential audience members and current clients to see if they find it just as interesting or entertaining. If you want your event ideas to be successful, bring in new clients, and create buzz, then BRAINSTORM!

Tags: Event Planning, Rental

M-Box Credit Card Processing Demo Video

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Wed, Feb 05, 2014 @ 12:46 PM

Seing is believing, right? With as often as the m-Box gets mentioned around here, it would be nice to actually see what it can do. Well, here's your chance to catch it in action. This promo video covers the basics of using the m-Box for credit card processing as well as highlighting the benefits of the online reporting component. You can even get a glimpse of what the online web portal looks like.

If you would like to know more about the how American Metro can boost the productivity of you business with a cash register and credit card processing, or to get a quote, just click the button below.

I'd Like a FREE Quote

Tags: Event Planning, Credit Card Equipment, M-Box

How many Cash Registers do I Need?

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Wed, Jan 08, 2014 @ 10:33 AM

crowd photo

Have you ever wished there was an easy way to accurately calculate your equipment requirements? We’ve had many requests to help answer this question over the years.

Why this question is important:

  • Guests don’t want to wait in long lines.
  • You need enough equipment to get you through the crunch times.
  • Spending more than is necessary for equipment or personnel is counterproductive.
  • There is a limited amount of counter space available.
  • Accurately completing a transaction saves time and money.
  • A percentage of your customers prefers to use a credit/debit card instead of cash

Our team of on-site managers and technicians has been personally involved in events covering all ends of the spectrum. We’ve identified over 20 factors that can greatly influence the checkout process.

Where to start

The first thing we look at is the expected attendance or expected revenue from your event. If you know this, you’re well on your way. One or both of these numbers are generally available from historical data or new events can be estimated based on similar events.

A few of the other factors we use to complete the calculation are:

  • How many days is your event?
  • What are the hours each day?
  • Are there sales spikes during your event? (i.e., When a concert lets out; At the end of a session)
  • How many sales areas (vendors) are at the venue?

The rest of the questions are equally easy to answer. When the right questions are asked and answered, the correct result is achieved.

Additional benefits

Another positive outcome of going through this exercise is identifying a handful of procedures that may cost you valuable time at checkout. Having done thousands of events, we’ve seen
the impact of these small variables; each makes a difference of perhaps only a couple seconds. When you multiply it out, two or three seconds times 20+ variables can double or triple the amount of time it takes to perform a simple transaction. With a slight modification, you could speed up your lines and require fewer cash registers.

Bottom line: happier guests; lower expenses.

For more information or a needs evaluation, contact Tim Mueller at American Metro using the button below.

.Needs Assessment

Tags: Events, Event Planning, Cash Registers

Pop-Up Retail Point of Sale Checklist

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Wed, Nov 13, 2013 @ 09:51 AM

checklistWhen producing a pop-up retail store, no matter the location, there are so many things to do and remember. Including stressful and important things that we can’t afford to forget! Technology is extremely important, especially when your revenue relies on it. This information will help you remember some of the important technological aspects that can determine your pop-up retail stores success or failure.

little checkmarkCash Register/POS System:

The most essential piece of technology that retailers everywhere depend on. So, how do you find a cost effective, reliable, and mobile system? Depending on your needs, the basics should include: either mobile options, all payment acceptance (credit/debit, cash), inventory management, or receipts (paper vs. email).

little checkmarkRouter:

A quality router is necessary for strong security and solid WiFi or cellular connectivity, when processing credit cards. It has the important applications of card swipers, security systems (if needed), WiFi network, printers, etc.

little checkmarkPeripherals: Scanner, Printer, & Cash Drawer:

Laser barcode scanners can be extremely efficient if your products have barcodes. It will make transactions quicker, so customers spend less time waiting in line and more time purchasing your products. External printers compliment a wide range of POS systems and can be important when printing receipts not only for your customer, but for you as well. Printers also have options in displaying logos and coupons that can help promote your business. Cash drawers are a simple but essential item, especially when only accepting cash. Steel drawers with a manager key option can assist with keeping your funds safe and secure.

little checkmarkInventory Reporting:

Not all Pop-Up retail events need inventory reporting, since some events sole purpose is to move product. However, it can be pretty useful when wanting a timely salesreport of the event. Instead of spending hours counting cash and checking receipts, you can receive a financial report in minutes from instant data readings during the event. This feature has become extremely valuable to event organizers everywhere, after all time is money.

Tags: Events, Event Planning, Rental

Accepting Credit Cards: Handheld vs. Integrated

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Mon, Oct 28, 2013 @ 10:48 AM

If you are thinking about accepting credit cards at your next event, consider these points on the differences between using a handheld terminal and integrated credit card options. Hopefully these will be able to assist you in making the right decision and improve the success of your event.

battery icon1)  No-Power (battery) vs. Power:

Handheld credit terminals are great if power sources are limited or unavailable. They have rechargeable batteries that can last up to 6-8 hours. The integrated system MUST have a power source to operate.

cash register icon2)  Register vs. No Register:

Integrated credit card processing takes place directly with the register. If you need or would like a register to assist with handling cash transactions as well, this option is both faster and more accurate. The Handheld is small and portable, so it takes up less room. With this option, you will need to establish a different system to handle your cash.

mobility icon3)  Mobility vs. Fixed Location:

Handheld credit card terminals offer lots of mobility. They can be very useful to trim down long lines by walking though the lines and checking out the individuals who are paying with credit or debit. It also works well for conventions or craft fairs when there are multiple transaction locations happening.

connectivity icon4)  Connectivity Concerns:

If there are potential connectivity issues at your venue, a backup plan is always a great idea. With some handheld credit card terminals, they have a “store and forward” mode. This allows you to accept payments offline that can be processed later. With an integrated system, if connectivity is lost, you are unable to accept electronic payments. Please note however, there are certain risks while in the store and forward mode. You are not getting a true authorization from the processor, so there is a risk some cards might be declined.

reporting icon5) Inventory Reporting:

The integrated credit card option has a higher detailed report of all transactions. If your event needs inventory reporting by instant data readings, then this would be your best option. The handheld credit card terminals only track the credit/debit transactions, not the actual items being sold.

Whether a hand-held terminal is right for you or using a point of sale system with integrated credit card processing is what you are after, American Metro is here to help. For additional information on credit card processing and pricing options, please follow the link below for a free, no obligation quote.

I'd Like a FREE Quote

Tags: Event Planning, Rental, Point Of Sale, Credit Card Equipment

Free Customizable Templates to Make Your Life Organized

Posted by Courtney Swanson on Wed, Jun 12, 2013 @ 08:37 AM

time managementThere is nothing we want more than to be able to kick off our shoes by the lake or hit up the golf course. However, with summer in full swing, things can get out of control. Something we find to be a simple solution to organizing a hectic work-load is Vertext42. They offer free templates that are customizable to your needs and are easy to share. We value our time and understand that you do too. The excel templates come updated with customizable features, so they work with everyone. One of our office favorites is the “Yearly Events Calendar” which already includes all national holidays and it lets you organize with different notification colors to really make things stand out. Being in the event services industry this template has literally been a lifesaver for multiple people in our office. We found this source to be incredibly helpful and wanted to pass it on.

(Resource: http://www.vertex42.com/calendars/yearly-schedule-of-events.html)

Tags: Events, Training, Event Planning

10 Tricks Every Festival & Event Organizer should know!

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Fri, Jun 07, 2013 @ 12:06 PM

Whether you’re in the planning stages or getting ready to set up, the summer’s festivals and events are in full swing. We understand all the work that goes into preparing for these events, and we want to help make things simple!  Here are some unique tips that we would like to share with you to make life easier for event organizers everywhere:

  1. knot your cordsTired of extension cords unplugging? Tie them together to keep them from falling out.








  2. store and organize your cordsWith all the different cords you may need at your event, organize them like this for easy access and quick labeling!







  3. pallet on a keychainWhen working with a client on a specific color pallet, paint Popsicle sticks of the color scheme and organize them with a binder ring. This way you can bring them with you everywhere when looking at fabrics or design ideas.





  4. describe the imageWith all the Keys on our key ring, organize them with paint or nail polish for easier and quicker access, after all time is money!









  5. tape tabsTape is a must have for any event whether its scotch tape, masking tape, and the most valuable duct tape. Save the end with a bread clip for easier use.







  6. penny in a vaseIf you are having fresh flowers at your event, place a penny into each vase with a pinch of sugar to keep flowers perkier longer. How’s that for penny’s value?









  7. quick candle cleanupIf candles are a part of the atmosphere at your event, remember to spray each holder with some oil. This way the wax won’t stick to the glass and makes your clean up that much faster!







  8. clever containersOutdoor events and festivals don’t have too much security for your belongings. As event organizers we carry some pretty valuable items, so be sure to disguise them with a unique case!






  9. dry checksIf you participate in outdoor events and are still accepting checks or have valuable paper documents, be sure to store them in a Ziploc with a piece of cardboard to keep them dry and un-creased!









  10. reserved seatsUtilize Space. To help prevent the front rows from being empty, place reserved signs on the last row or two to make people shift forward (you can remove the signs once the front row is filled).




Tags: Events, Event Planning, Service