Having efficient and knowledgeable cashiers at the helm of your business is the secret sauce that never fails to deliver great customer service experiences. After all, your cashiers are the people who close your sales and are the front-line ambassadors for your brand. As such, the time and resources you invest in empowering your sales staff will be well spent. Use the cashier training tips below as a starting point as you teach each of your indispensable new team members how to be a better cashier—while loving what they do.
In today’s economic landscape, convenience is king. If you want your customers to have a quick and seamless payment experience at your point of sale (POS), using an old-school credit card machine isn’t going to tip the odds in your favor.
Luckily, credit card terminal technology has advanced dramatically in recent years. Some of the most robust POS systems are also the most streamlined, cost-effective, and easy to use. Choose a card reader that has a clear, customer-friendly, and intuitive POS software interface associated with it. When it comes to credit card processing efficiently, the less complexity your system has, the better.
The first order of business will be to teach your employees to:
Log in to the system
Initiate a sale
Send or print a receipt
Apply promotions and discounts
Transact refunds and returns
Give your salespeople dummy transactions to practice with at first. That way, you can ensure that everyone has understood how your POS software and Virtual Terminal work and they are all using them in the same manner.
With the right tools in hand, your new employees will have fewer hurdles to clear during POS training. Then you can focus more of your efforts on giving them good customer service skills and educating them about being the face of your brand and mission.
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Although today’s cashiers handle more credit cards than cash, they still need to know what your expectations are for how cash should be handled. Make sure your representatives know:
How much money will be in their float
What the procedures are for removing cash to the safe and who needs to authorize its movement
What your tolerance will be for shortages and overages at the ends of shifts—and what will happen when there is a discrepancy.
Making these procedures clear from the outset will minimize the potential for uncomfortable management moments between you and your customer service staff.
During customer service training, it’s also a good idea to have team members get into the habit of talking aloud as they handle customers’ cash. For example, when receiving a ten-dollar bill, your trainee could say, “Out of ten?” Or, when counting out change, he or she could say, “That’s five, ten, fifteen dollars and twenty-five cents.” These kinds of communication skills are easy to adopt, give an extra air of courtesy to the transaction, and prevent disputes about what denominations have just changed hands.
If you want to teach your new team members how to be a good cashier, you will need to give them precise tactics and language for dealing with angry and difficult customers when problems arise. Even if it might be old hat to you, a discussion and some role playing about how to stay calm and solve the problem in front of them will make your staff more confident in the long run. Listening skills are key too; a negative customer experience can often be salvaged if that customer feels his or her concerns have been heard and dealt with adequately.
Being proactive about how your agents will deal with customers when things go wrong will reduce the frequency with which they need a manager’s support to come find a resolution.
Be sure that your cashiers are aware of common types of fraud and the lengths fraudsters will go to in order to perpetrate their crimes. Talk to them about how to spot counterfeit cash and make sure they understand PCI compliance standards for credit cards.
Remember to train your staff to always dip chip cards rather than swipe them. Swiping cards puts your customer’s personal information at greater risk, therefore dipping does a better job at preventing identity theft.
Your customer service representatives will be much more comfortable in their jobs if they have been thoroughly schooled on the curve balls that might be thrown their way in the course of a typical shift. They will appreciate a sound knowledge of:
All your promotions
Rules for coupons and discounts
How to manage transactions using gift cards.
Perhaps the most important part of your training is frequent practice. Making role play a part of your training will give your customer service agents an opportunity to become comfortable through repetition. Let your new representatives practice at slow times during the day and have your trainees shadow your best cashier during busier times.
The extra time you spend practicing will pay off as your confident and adept cashiers begin to win you repeat customers with their skills.
Want to discover more small business tips? Check out other articles from our blog.