Cambridge Consulting develops smart cash register for retail

22 March 2016 3 min. read
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Cambridge Consulting has developed a digital solution to age old cash register problems through the implementation of advanced algorithms. The technology improves fraud detection as well as counts the money on the shop floor in real-time.

Getting things right behind the till remains an ever important part of running a shop. Yet, businesses still face challenges in and around the till, from staff fraud ‘retail shrinkage’, to the difficulty of telling how much is in the draw. According to the Global Retail Theft Barometer 2014-2015, staff taking coin from the point of sale costs global businesses up to a third of $123.4 billion, while manually counting money is both a time consuming process as well as prone to error.

Innovation has, in recent years, sought to bring a means of accurately counting till money. The technology uses mechanical, weight-sensitive, load cell draws that detect how much money, of specific types, is placed into specially designed sections within the draw. The technology is relatively expensive, bulky, and requires constant calibration.

Cambridge Consulting develops smart cash register for retail

Cambridge Consulting recently brought a new, digital, draw-based money counting offering for retailers, which highlights the continued potential of digital on the shop floor. The technology uses three low-cost load cells to sense the addition or removal of coins – singly or in multiples – and can determine in which section of the drawer coins are deposited. However, unlike the earlier technology, the cells are able to differentiated between two 5p coins and one 10p coin (which are the same weight) falling into the respective sections. This is possible through an algorithm that continually analyses the output from the load cells to determine changes in weight and impacts, as well as providing information on the contents of the cash drawer in real time. Through the digitalisation of the process, retailers have a better overview of how much money is on the shop floor, as well as preventing error and fraud.

“The world-class algorithm and sensing expertise of Cambridge Consultants has helped make our vision of a state-of-the-art, low-cost, counting cash drawer a reality,” says Peter Charij, director of Smart Drawer. “We now have a product that offers retailers high counting accuracy, a small size and a fast return on investment. And, with our integrated software LiveStore, we can offer a complete end-to-end solution with a large number of features wrapped in a secure software package.”

“Our wide-ranging skills in sensing and algorithm development – coupled with our long history of complex systems engineering projects – has enabled us to help Smart Drawer create a truly novel product,” says Nathan Wrench, head of the industrial and energy business at Cambridge Consultants. “The combination of advanced technology and reduced cost also means intelligent cash drawer technology is now within reach of even more retailers.”