Marks and Spencer Secures Savings With CASH360
CASH360 Retail Solutions
In a challenging economic climate, UK retailers look to companies such as G4S to provide secure cash solutions while still controlling costs. For a retailer the size of Marks and Spencer, getting this balance wrong simply wasn't an option.
With 21 million customers served every week and over £9 billion of annual turnover, efficient management of cash is high on the agenda for Marks and Spencer.
David Kightley, Head of Shrinkage at Marks and Spencer says: "Because of the volume of cash we manage, it is really important to us that we manage it effectively. The more efficient we are, the more we are able to focus our people on serving customers and, in turn, manage our profitability."
With an acknowledge lack of visibility in certain sections of the 'cash chain' Marks and Spencer needed to be able to pinpoint where the problems were to help focus their resources more effectively. The scale of the challenge - and the risk of not getting it right - is what prompted them to investigate a new cash solution.
"It was clear to us at the very early stages that the people currently ahead of the game in cash solutions are G4S."
G4S began working with Marks and Spencer on the CASH360 solutions - a new approach to cash management which integrates every stage of the cash cycle and draws on G4S's expertise in logistics, technology solutions and secure cash management.
Alistair Fowler-Marson, Head of Retail for G4S explains: "CASH360 is all about finding the opportunities in the cash cycle for retailers. Because we understand the cycle from end-to-end, we are able to exploit opportunities for improved accuracy, security and productivity."
At its Lower Earley store near Reading, Marks and Spencer has trialled the G4S CASH360 solution. High capacity note and coin recyclers and an intuitive touch-screen interface are now in place and delivering huge improvements in the speed, accuracy and security of counting both coins and notes.
The system minimises the number of times that staff have to handle cash, thus increasing security and accuracy. What's more the technology is programmed each morning to issue a standard float to each till meaning less demand on the store's staff and further reducing opportunities for error and losses.
"Spending less time and money on cash management means we have more time to spend with customers. It's a mindset which is a cornerstone of the business," says David.
Equally important for Marks and Spencer is the timely and accurate delivery of information. The G4S CASH360 solution provides them with a view of losses by till, by day with no extra staffing costs.
"In the pilot store the G4S solution has made a significant difference to performance, with till losses reduced significantly." says David.
To date, the Marks and Spencer trial has focused on improved efficiency and accuracy of data but by looking at the bigger picture further improvements may follow.
"It's not just what the technology does now, the exciting part is how we might exploit efficiencies in the future," David explains.
CASH360 offers the opportunity to bypass deposit processing completely and move cash straight into fitness-checking - another way to reduce the time taken to move cash through the cycle.
By tapping into G4S's integrated approach, Marks and Spencer is turning cash management to its advantage.