Sean Farrell

By: Sean Farrell on February 8th, 2016

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How Do I Get My Head Teller Back?

Cash Automation | Branch Transformation

One of the most common challenges our financial clients face is the workload of the head teller, teller supervisor or vault teller.  The individuals in those roles spend a lot of time doing non client facing activities, which reduces the throughput of clients served and can lead to the branch incurring additional staffing expense to handle volumes and a diminished client experience.  So, the question becomes: How much could I impact my client experience if my head teller was truly client focused?  Let’s see how we get them back.

More Money More Problems

Three of the most common things head tellers deal with on a daily basis that can consume a large amount of their time are:

  • Managing teller cash levels – Vault buys, vault sells and teller transfers
  • Out of balance tellers – Outages typically take a lot of head teller time to track down the issue and get it resolved
  • Managing Cash Between the line, the shipment, and the ATM – While not every institution loads their own ATM, prepping cassettes to load in the ATM, or sending and receiving the shipment can be daunting tasks at a busy location

For head tellers, managing cash for other tellers is a task that can become increasingly challenging as the branch gets busier.  As you add staff, you also add opportunities to run high or low on cash that requires a dual control buy or sell to occur.

Imagine some teller supervisors having to make sure that tellers keep their drawer levels at proper amounts while maintaining balance in the vault on a busy Friday. I have seen high volume locations do upwards of 30-40 vault buys or sells in one day!

Success Story: First Port City Bank Reduces Vault Trips with TCR

We also know that out of balance situations happen quite frequently in the branch environment, especially where there is minimal automation in place. 

As business picks up, tellers can be rushed in an effort to serve clients the fastest way possible during rush time and are likely to make mistakes.  Many of our clients find they are paying a fairly significant amount of overtime annually for staff to track down errors. 

The big problem with this is it’s not just the teller’s time, but possibly even audit or other corporate assets trying to get things back into balance.  A simple $50 outage could cost $250 in labor to rectify. 

How Cash Automation Helps

By this time, you might be saying “yes, I have some of these issues” and are wondering how to fix them.  Cash automation provides answers to these challenges in a variety of ways.  By having a cash recycler in the teller line, the buys and sells to the vault that require the time and attention of the head teller all but vanish. 

With the recycler, two tellers are actively working with essentially an unlimited supply of cash (typically $80,000-$150,000) and any teller not connected to the unit can buy from or sell to the machine in SINGLE control. 

So instead of it taking two people (including the head teller) 10 minutes to sell to or buy from the vault, it now takes one person about 2-4 minutes depending on the type of transaction they are completing.  With automation, it’s possible that your head teller could have assisted 1 or 2 customers in the same time it would have taken to help the other teller manage their cash level.

Secondly, by using the machine to automate the process of counting all cash in and out by transaction, out of balance situations all but disappear. 

Since the recycler is managing cash, sorting by denomination and reporting back to the teller system what’s been done, it creates a harmonious existence between teller and machine. In addition to reducing time needed to handle out of balance tellers, the total time to open in the morning and close at end of day is reduced by roughly 15-20 minutes each. 

Tellers who previously had to come in 15-20 minutes early to find their drawer, count it down and then login to the teller system, now simply show up 5 minutes before open, turn on their PC and login to the teller system and recycler and are ready for the day.

Cash Recycler Infographic

Finally, with the advent of the transit cassette on the MS500 recycler from Hyosung, cash can now be securely transferred from cash recycler to vault, cash recycler to other recycler, or even cash recycler to self-service kiosk without ever having to expose or count the cash a second time, again in SINGLE control.  For more information about this feature of the MS500, please visit the product page.

By implementing one, or multiple, recyclers in your teller line, the head teller is enabled to spend more time helping clients achieve their goals and less time managing the tellers and their cash balances throughout the day. 

Our clients typically find that two tellers working off a machine can do the work of three. And when you factor in all the management time required to move money from the vault to the teller line, from the teller line to the vault, and possibly the ATM, the ROI is quickly realized. 

A cash recycler isn’t a magic bullet and doesn’t solve every challenge, but if you are facing some of the issues discussed here, we would love to hear from you to determine if your challenges can be resolved. 

About Sean Farrell

Sean has been in the business since 2003 and always aims to be an expert on whatever solutions QDS is providing. Sean has grown into a thought leader in the space through research and company growth. Sean holds strongly to his Christian faith and uses those principles to guide the business.