NCR's new self-service kiosk will allow customers to pay multiple bills in one place at one time, using a variety of payment methods.
As time becomes more precious, it will become more important as an incentive to keep customers returning. Already, many surveys show that employees are opting for jobs that give them more free time and the chance to lead a better lifestyle, rather than jobs that pay more money. But so far, other than in the most basic sense (for example, speeding up check-out lines), bricks and mortar retailers haven't really exploited to the full the potential of time-saving as an incentive.
NCR is introducing the Xpress Payment Kiosk, which will enable customers to pay a variety of monthly bills in a few minutes in one place. The company is looking at convenience stores (many of which generate up to 70% of their income through self-service devices) as natural sites for the kiosks, but they could be sited almost anywhere. According to NCR Web Kiosk General Manager, Nelson Gomez, the company's experience with custom bill payment kiosks for the telecoms industry shows that customers do use them. A recent survey conducted for NCR by the Opinion Research Corporation supports this view.
Instead of paying each bill at a separate place, customers will simply scan a bar code on the bill or enter a personal access code. Using an intuitive, touch sensitive screen, they can then view and pay their bills, using cash, cheques, credit or debit cards. The bill is credited and a receipt is issued.
The kiosk can be used to run multimedia product advertising or promotional messages when not in use, and can also be programmed to collect feedback from customers, using online flash surveys.
The kiosk's software records all payments, including cash denominations. For ease of servicing, it also monitors and reports the status of the cash canister and the printer paper.