Shell Germany is testing Wincor Nixdorf’s cash management solution

Automating retail cash processes

At Wincor World 2006, Wincor Nixdorf is introducing its cash management solution offer for the retail sector. The package includes hardware and software plus consulting and other services. Shell Germany has been piloting essential components from this portfolio at three service stations in Germany. Experience gained during this test phase has been entirely positive. With its cash management solutions, Wincor Nixdorf aims to automate cash-handling processes, reduce inventory discrepancies and increase security for business operators.

Since November 2005, Shell Germany has been cooperating with Wincor Nixdorf to test ways of rationalizing cash handling at service stations while simultaneously minimizing the risk of loss. Within the space of six months Wincor Nixdorf developed a solution for Shell’s pilot project consisting of the coin module iCash15, the banknote module iCash 50 and the iCash software. The pilot operation was carried out at Shell stations in Berlin, Kassel and Hamburg.

The coin module “iCash/15” is placed at the front of the service counter facing the customer. Customers can place any number of uncounted coins in the input hopper and these are then registered by the module. The same module is also used to dispense change. The banknote module “iCash/50”, on the other hand, is placed on the far side of the counter out of the customer’s reach.

The store’s entire cashflow takes place via these two units. The cash cycle is closed, which means that the cashiers and the station operator no longer handle any cash except while making an actual sale. Wincor Nixdorf conceived this system to fulfill the specific requirements of Shell Germany. As Marcel Maderyc, Finance Manager at German Shell and project manager for Cash Automation, explains: “We wanted a closed cash recycling system with self-service units that not only fulfilled our particular requirements as regards size, speed, resilience and reliability but could also be easily integrated into the POS systems and merchandise management technology used in the various Shell stations.”

In this project, Wincor Nixdorf is employing the iCash software that was developed especially for it. Banknotes are stored in a safe that can be opened only by the security service provider Heros, one of the partners in the project. Each day, Heros collects the cash from the self-service units and transports it to the company’s own cash center. This procedure reduces the risk of robberies.

For the staff, the closed and automated cash cycle rules out both employee theft and careless mistakes when giving change. But the principal feature is the savings effected by process automation – for straightforward cashier operations as well as cash drop and reconciliation procedures. As Shell manager Marcel Maderyc says, “Cash automation offers Shell partners the chance to implement the company’s convenience concept and to provide comprehensive service and prompt, friendly and competent customer care even better than before.”

“A company’s cash handling processes, from the POS to the cash office and all the way to cash supply and disposal through cash-in-transit operators, offer significant potential for increasing productivity. Our proposals, which extend to process consulting and even management of a company’s complete cash handling, offer retail enterprises a modular solution for the entire process chain, from the POS to the bank,” says Lothar Wolf, who directs marketing at Wincor Nixdorf’s business unit Retail Cash Management.