No matter the size of your retail business, it’s important to pay close attention to you and your employees’ cash handling practices. There are many risks associated with the handling of large volumes of money, and a good management plan can help lower costs, increase security, and decrease your overall risk.
We want to share with you five cash handling best practices that every retailer should adopt. By creating a game plan and adhering to it, you’ll increase the security of your business and improve your overall bottom line.
Perform a Self-Audit
Before you start implementing new cash management procedures, you first need to know exactly what’s going on at the till. Start by looking at the entire lifecycle of cash in your business—from the moment the cashier accepts money to the second it’s safely deposited at the bank or picked up by the armed courier.
Look for areas of weakness where theft or human error can occur and make a note of it. Once you’ve completed your audit, you’ll have a good idea of how good—or lax—the overall cash management processes are at your business.
Enforce the Rules
Cash management rules and “best practices” are only as good as the people who follow them. You, your managers, and employees must adhere to the established rules at all times. There should be no cutting corners, no guesstimating, and every single cent needs to be accounted for before the shop closes for the night.
Don’t rely on your managers to pass the information down to the employees. Make sure you have an active security and loss prevention training program that each new (and current) employee undergoes before they’re allowed to work the register. This way, they will feel more comfortable and confident working from within the boundaries of the new rules.
Separation of Duty
There is a higher risk of fraud and human error when the number of employees who handle cash increases. You should never allow two people to share the same register unless they each have a specific login. Otherwise, it makes it far too easy for employee A to steal from the register and blame it on employee B.
Accountability is crucial, and this is why it’s important to separate the entire cash management process over a group of employees. If only one or two people are in control, the risk for theft dramatically increases. Those who handle the recording of cash payments should not deposit funds, have access to bookkeeping, or perform vault transactions.
For many small retailers, it’s all too easy to get complicit in the day-to-day operations of your business. Sometimes errors might go unnoticed, and this can lead to an increased security risk. Ensure that there is a checks and balances system that logically ensures that cash transactions are recorded correctly.
Make it a point to count and balance your receipts daily, and then compare those with the actual deposit slips. You can also schedule random bookkeeping checks performed by yourself, your bookkeeper, or CPA. The randomness will add an additional layer of security to the overall cash management process.
Take Advantage of Technology
Investing in smart safe technology such as AMSEC CashWizard can not only help increase security but save you valuable time with their integrated cloud technology. You’ll have greater visibility of your cash and access to critical business information, including daily deposits.
It will also help free up the time that managers and cashiers spend dealing with cash by decreasing counts and runs to the bank. CashWizard can also integrate with POS systems as well as reconciliation software.
Take Back Control of Your Cash Management
Your job is to run and grow your business. By implementing an intelligent cash management plan and taking advantage of the multiple time and money-saving benefits of a smart safe, you’ll see an increased bottom line and overall security.
If you’d like to learn more about the benefits of the AMSEC CashWizard line of smart safes, or would like to find a retailer, visit our contact page for more information.