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(News.com.au)   Buying more than 3 bags of carrots at the self-service supermarket scanner? Expect a visit from store security   (news.com.au) divider line 110
    More: Obvious, personal care products, checkouts  
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8348 clicks; posted to Business » on 11 Nov 2012 at 12:54 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-11-11 02:25:48 AM
I like how the article says that these new security measures have resulted in a drop in the number of detected thefts.
 
2012-11-11 05:46:07 AM
Well if they had clerks to give actual customer service this wouldn't be an issue now would it?
 
2012-11-11 06:20:03 AM
thieves are thieves .they should be busted .
 
2012-11-11 06:27:17 AM
I have no idea how these things work in Australia or the US, but in the UK they weigh the items that you scan as you put them into your bag, and if it doesn't match with what you've scanned an assistant has to come over and check it.

Are there many valuable things which weigh the same as a bag of carrots?
 
2012-11-11 07:40:10 AM
The way they sell bundles of Carrots and onions is their weight is more variable so a bundle of carrots could be programmed to be .900 -> 1.1 kg so with a 20% swing, you can scan a carrot and put in a a steak, then scan the carrots again and put them in the bag and the machine will be happy.
 
2012-11-11 07:50:23 AM

sithon: thieves are thieves .they should be busted .


Indeed. Mildly clever theives though.
 
2012-11-11 08:19:15 AM

chaingangelementary.com

AND STAY OUTTA WOOLSWORTH
 
2012-11-11 08:20:58 AM

DammitIForgotMyLogin: I have no idea how these things work in Australia or the US, but in the UK they weigh the items that you scan as you put them into your bag, and if it doesn't match with what you've scanned an assistant has to come over and check it.

Are there many valuable things which weigh the same as a bag of carrots?


It's the same way in the US. There are sensors and helpers watching. But even without human oversight, the machines err on the side of obnoxiously suspicious.
 
2012-11-11 08:35:46 AM

AbbeySomeone: Well if they had clerks to give actual customer service this wouldn't be an issue now would it?


This. Walmart and others deserve it by having customers not be paid to be clerks.
 
2012-11-11 09:38:46 AM

thamike: [chaingangelementary.com image 436x197]

AND STAY OUTTA WOOLSWORTH


Was that all of 'em or just the one?
 
2012-11-11 09:50:42 AM
Maybe they just really like to juice - did these stores ever consider that possibility?
 
2012-11-11 10:04:07 AM

MaudlinMutantMollusk: thamike: [chaingangelementary.com image 436x197]

AND STAY OUTTA WOOLSWORTH

Was that all of 'em or just the one?


Gopher?
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2012-11-11 10:27:45 AM
Unexpected item in bagging area please remove -- item removed from bagging area, please return item to bagging area -- unexpected item

*blam* *blam* *blam*

OK, that last part is fiction. I haven't unloaded on an automated checkout machine yet. But they're really stupid and raise a lot of false alarms. You have to act suspicious, like putting items on the floor instead of on the sensors. The supervisor has to override so much he/she can't be paying much attention to the possible theft in progress.
 
2012-11-11 10:37:16 AM

ZAZ: Unexpected item in bagging area please remove -- item removed from bagging area, please return item to bagging area -- unexpected item

*blam* *blam* *blam*

OK, that last part is fiction. I haven't unloaded on an automated checkout machine yet. But they're really stupid and raise a lot of false alarms. You have to act suspicious, like putting items on the floor instead of on the sensors. The supervisor has to override so much he/she can't be paying much attention to the possible theft in progress.


REMOVE UNSCANNED ITEM FROM BAG. REMOVE UNSCANNED ITEM FROM BAG. PLEASE WAIT. UNSCANNED ITEM MUST BE REMOVED FROM BAG. BONUS CARD ACCEPTED. REMOVE ITEM FROM SCALE. SCAN ITEM THEN PLACE IN BAG. REMOVE ITEM FROM SCANNING AREA. UNSCANNED ITEM REQUIRES PROOF OF LEGAL AGE. MANAGER ASSISTANCE REQUIRED. REMOVE SECOND UNSCANNED ITEM FROM SCANNING AREA. PLEASE SCAN YOUR ITEMS NOW. FOR ENGLISH TOUCH SCREEN.

All at maximum volume, you standing there with a tube of athlete's foot cream and a what's-goin-on-here look.. Everyone watching.
 
2012-11-11 10:50:23 AM

DammitIForgotMyLogin: I have no idea how these things work in Australia or the US, but in the UK they weigh the items that you scan as you put them into your bag, and if it doesn't match with what you've scanned an assistant has to come over and check it.

Are there many valuable things which weigh the same as a bag of carrots?


When an item is sold by the pound, as vegetables often are, you could tell the machine you were purchasing something cheap, like carrots. Those are entered manually as there's usually no tag or, if there is, it's a series of numbers you type in. So you type in the code for carrots, it asks you to place the carrots on the scale so it can determine the price, and, instead, you place a bottle of champagne on it. Now, the system rings you up for x weight in carrots and expects that weight to appear in the bagging area, but it has no way of knowing what it actually weighed.
 
2012-11-11 12:24:45 PM
They're trying to cut expenses by installing self service checkouts and getting rid of human employees.

The situation has become so critical that Woolworths has installed a locking and lights system

She said the supermarket had upgraded its security and CCTV systems,


They're doing it wrong.
 
2012-11-11 12:43:34 PM
As someone in retail, here's a suggestion: increase payroll (either more workers or better pay for existing workers) and theft will drop. Provide an incentive - if loss is under a certain percentage for a quarter, everyone in the store gets a cash bonus split proportionally among how long they've been employed (10 people, 9 of whom have been employed with the company for 6 months and the last guy for 4 years, he gets 48/102 percent of the money) - and crap will change. Until then, contrary to all the farking posters, loss does NOT impact everyone.

My pay wouldn't go up 1 penny if we reduced shoplifting to 0% and doubled sales.
 
2012-11-11 12:44:13 PM

timujin: DammitIForgotMyLogin: I have no idea how these things work in Australia or the US, but in the UK they weigh the items that you scan as you put them into your bag, and if it doesn't match with what you've scanned an assistant has to come over and check it.

Are there many valuable things which weigh the same as a bag of carrots?

When an item is sold by the pound, as vegetables often are, you could tell the machine you were purchasing something cheap, like carrots. Those are entered manually as there's usually no tag or, if there is, it's a series of numbers you type in. So you type in the code for carrots, it asks you to place the carrots on the scale so it can determine the price, and, instead, you place a bottle of champagne on it. Now, the system rings you up for x weight in carrots and expects that weight to appear in the bagging area, but it has no way of knowing what it actually weighed.


And the supervising employee is absent, or helping some old lady swipe her debit card.

Scanner should check for UPC code even if customer says there's none.
 
2012-11-11 12:58:01 PM
One time I forgot I had some expensive peppers in with the cheap ones. I NEVER WENT BACK TO PAY
 
2012-11-11 01:05:39 PM
This is just an extension of piracy. Has nothing to do with whether it's theft or not, and everything to do with whether people think they can get away with it.
 
2012-11-11 01:10:07 PM
Screw them. They should be paying the customers minimum wage for acting as their employee.
 
2012-11-11 01:10:23 PM

BarkingUnicorn: timujin: DammitIForgotMyLogin: I have no idea how these things work in Australia or the US, but in the UK they weigh the items that you scan as you put them into your bag, and if it doesn't match with what you've scanned an assistant has to come over and check it.

Are there many valuable things which weigh the same as a bag of carrots?

When an item is sold by the pound, as vegetables often are, you could tell the machine you were purchasing something cheap, like carrots. Those are entered manually as there's usually no tag or, if there is, it's a series of numbers you type in. So you type in the code for carrots, it asks you to place the carrots on the scale so it can determine the price, and, instead, you place a bottle of champagne on it. Now, the system rings you up for x weight in carrots and expects that weight to appear in the bagging area, but it has no way of knowing what it actually weighed.

And the supervising employee is absent, or helping some old lady swipe her debit card.

Scanner should check for UPC code even if customer says there's none.


Then they put the item barcode side up.
 
2012-11-11 01:14:52 PM
I can see the problem and it makes me wonder if they actually have someone watching the self checkouts , the have 4( self checkouts) of them in my local Walmart super center and i use them often as i can generally get out of the store faster and there is always a clerk right there where he or she can see all four of the self checkouts making it dicey to try the scam from the article.
 
2012-11-11 01:18:23 PM
I dunno... I was heading home the other night to watch the game and my mouth was all watering for a nice crudité platter. I decided to stop by the grocer.

Next thing I know, I've got some rent-a-cop's finger up my ass.

/And I hadn't even gone into the store yet.
 
2012-11-11 01:21:27 PM
what if you put a whole ribeye on the scale and pick the picture for watermellon would the machine be happy with that
 
2012-11-11 01:26:24 PM

shanrick: They're trying to cut expenses by installing self service checkouts and getting rid of human employees.

The situation has become so critical that Woolworths has installed a locking and lights system

She said the supermarket had upgraded its security and CCTV systems,

They're doing it wrong.


Not really.

Employees are a Liability in business accounting.

Stuff like extra security measures are an Asset.
 
2012-11-11 01:26:30 PM
Also a good way to score beer if you're underage. Cut the bar code off a case of diet coke, tape it over the beer bar code.
 
2012-11-11 01:32:20 PM
Before my preferred grocery store removed them, I got stuck in line behind a teenage girl buying 3 lollipops at the automated checkout. Not sure if it was because the bagging table couldn't detect the weight, but it took interminably long. The csr had to intervene in the end because the line was backing up. I doubt even a zen master has that kind of patience.

/csb
 
2012-11-11 01:38:38 PM

zamboni: I dunno... I was heading home the other night to watch the game and my mouth was all watering for a nice crudité platter. I decided to stop by the grocer.

Next thing I know, I've got some rent-a-cop's finger up my ass.

/And I hadn't even gone into the store yet.


Awkward...but recoverable unless you feel a second hand on your shoulder while you're bent over.
 
2012-11-11 01:46:18 PM

DammitIForgotMyLogin: I have no idea how these things work in Australia or the US, but in the UK they weigh the items that you scan as you put them into your bag, and if it doesn't match with what you've scanned an assistant has to come over and check it.

Are there many valuable things which weigh the same as a bag of carrots?


criticalmas.com
 
2012-11-11 01:48:02 PM
eh. what's up doc

www.neatorama.com
 
2012-11-11 01:51:45 PM
Apropos of nothing

lh4.googleusercontent.com
 
2012-11-11 01:57:00 PM

Snarcoleptic_Hoosier: As someone in retail, here's a suggestion: increase payroll (either more workers or better pay for existing workers) and theft will drop. Provide an incentive - if loss is under a certain percentage for a quarter, everyone in the store gets a cash bonus split proportionally among how long they've been employed (10 people, 9 of whom have been employed with the company for 6 months and the last guy for 4 years, he gets 48/102 percent of the money) - and crap will change. Until then, contrary to all the farking posters, loss does NOT impact everyone.

My pay wouldn't go up 1 penny if we reduced shoplifting to 0% and doubled sales.


I've worked retail, and I think I have spotted the problem with your suggestion. How would the district manager be able to complain about the poor mystery shop scores while simultaneously demanding that hours be reduced across the board, all while the store is posting record sales numbers?
 
2012-11-11 01:57:25 PM
Duh, I've been doing this for years, but I use "onions" rather than carrots. If you've got a lot of other stuff, the store is busy and don't look like a lowlife you get away with it every time.
 
2012-11-11 01:58:59 PM
This is how I got two bunches of radishes for the price of one.
 
2012-11-11 01:59:04 PM

DammitIForgotMyLogin: I have no idea how these things work in Australia or the US, but in the UK they weigh the items that you scan as you put them into your bag, and if it doesn't match with what you've scanned an assistant has to come over and check it.

Are there many valuable things which weigh the same as a bag of carrots?


criticalmas.com
 
2012-11-11 02:00:01 PM
Dammit Theaetetus!

/must remember to refresh before posting
 
2012-11-11 02:04:58 PM
Sometimes I click the spanish button when I use the check out things because I can't stand the shrill voice of the English lady.
 
2012-11-11 02:09:38 PM

haywatchthis: what if you put a whole ribeye on the scale and pick the picture for watermellon would the machine be happy with that


Yep.
 
2012-11-11 02:09:48 PM

DammitIForgotMyLogin: I have no idea how these things work in Australia or the US, but in the UK they weigh the items that you scan as you put them into your bag, and if it doesn't match with what you've scanned an assistant has to come over and check it.

Are there many valuable things which weigh the same as a bag of carrots?


The only experience I have with self checkout is primarily at our local grocery store (Safeway). You're supposed to scan an unweighed item and then put it in the bagging area. The system seems to know, fairly precisely, how much that item should weigh.

So let's say I go to isle 4, take a 20 pound sack of gold ingots off the shelf, and slap a UPC code for an individual string cheese over the real UPC. I take my sack of gold up to the self checkout, scan it, and put it in the bagging area. The machine will pitch a fit and an employee has to come over and figure it out.

Now, two things: One, I don't have to put the item in the bagging area. I can set it on the floor, I can hold it... if I do so, a button pops up that says. "Skipp Bagging." It seems to be a tossup as to whether that will summon an employee. It almost never does.
The second issue is that, in my experience, the employees barely take a look at what's going on. You've got about a 50-50 chance that they'll do more than apologize, scan their badge, and clear the error. If they actually bother to look, and you only have one item that clearly doesn't match what the machine said you scanned, then you're going to get busted. But if you have a pile of groceries and you just tell them some half-assed excuse, "I don't know. I set the item down but then it popped up with the skip bagging message and I clicked it but then this error came up... *shrug*" 99/100 they're just going to clear the error.

This is all based on my experience. YMMV. I can't legally advise anyone to commit a crime.
 
2012-11-11 02:10:54 PM
All the self check outs in my area have a cashier nearby watching over the four or so self check out registers. It still saves money to hire one person to watch customers self check out, if your goal is making sure people aren't stealing stuff. And someone still gets to have a job. Sometimes customers do need help, which may be the primary reason for a cashier to be on hand, but it also would hinder theft as someone's actually watching the customers ring up the items.
 
2012-11-11 02:13:48 PM
They still have Woolworths?
 
2012-11-11 02:14:18 PM
If you can have 1 employee at $8/hr watching 6 self-check machines, you've reduced costs by $40/hr, so if your theft rate is less than that $40/hr, you're doing fine. Oh, noes, you got $15 of sausage for $5 using the carrot trick? Store's still ahead.
 
2012-11-11 02:16:48 PM
"She said the measures had led to a drop in detected theft at self-serve checkouts to less than 200 cases a week"


Now we just have to worry about the unknown thieves.

24.media.tumblr.com
 
2012-11-11 02:18:11 PM
Rookies, the lot of ya.

1. Walk around parking lot till you find a receipt on the ground
2. Go inside store and get everything on the receipt
3. Walk out
4. (optional) Take items to customer service for full refund then go buy what you need.
5. Profit.
 
2012-11-11 02:22:11 PM
I know not everyone was blessed from birth in the art of using self-checkouts as I was, but for the love of FSM, if you:

- can't read the language on the screen
- like to analyze the screen for 10 seconds after each item scanned
- move your items slowly 1 by 1 from your cart
- bag your groceries after you've finished paying

don't use the farking machines.
 
2012-11-11 02:33:12 PM

Nexzus: I know not everyone was blessed from birth in the art of using self-checkouts as I was, but for the love of FSM, if you:

- can't read the language on the screen
- like to analyze the screen for 10 seconds after each item scanned
- move your items slowly 1 by 1 from your cart
- bag your groceries after you've finished paying

don't use the farking machines.


Or maybe people use them because that's how they want to check out, and they can do it how they please? Let's get real....if you don't like waiting on other people to use the self-scan, then go to a regular line.
 
2012-11-11 02:35:43 PM

Asa Phelps: I like how the article says that these new security measures have resulted in a drop in the number of detected thefts.


It's not that hard to track. If your store has put 300 units on the floor, computer shows you've sold only 50 units but you only have 100 units left in stock, it's not that hard to figure how much you've lost to theft.

MATH AND COMPUTER TRACKING ON INVENTORY, HOW THE fark DOES IT WORK? It's a MIRACLE.
 
2012-11-11 02:42:51 PM

offmymeds: They still have Woolworths?


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Woolworths_(supermarket)
 
2012-11-11 02:43:04 PM

Satanic_Hamster: Asa Phelps: I like how the article says that these new security measures have resulted in a drop in the number of detected thefts.

It's not that hard to track. If your store has put 300 units on the floor, computer shows you've sold only 50 units but you only have 100 units left in stock, it's not that hard to figure how much you've lost to theft.

MATH AND COMPUTER TRACKING ON INVENTORY, HOW THE fark DOES IT WORK? It's a MIRACLE.


If only produce were that simple.
 
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