Asked what is the one skill he sees as most important in new recruits, Izzo responded, “The mental toughness to withstand all the outside influences. Mental toughness is something our society is lacking in.” He noted that discipline is the greatest form of love.
Self service kiosks: ‘vending on steroids’
Vending operators can proudly claim that vending was the first form of unassisted retailing. But as robotic technology, telemetry, electronic commerce and radio frequency identification have all evolved, a host of new self service concepts has emerged in recent years.
Several articles in Automatic Merchandiser have explored the relationship between self service kiosks and traditional vending in the past year. To give vending operators more insight into this young and rising related industry, NAMA presented a seminar at the national expo titled, “Self service kiosks: vending on steroids.”
David Drain, executive director of the Self Service & Kiosk Association, explained that his association was formed in 2001 and presently has 235 members, consisting of suppliers and deployers of self service kiosks.
The main reason that retailers are adopting self service concepts is to reduce the cost of labor, Drain said.
Drain said consumers are increasingly choosing self service alternatives. The most obvious example is supermarket self checkout.
There is still no substitute for a great employee, Drain said, but the question has to be asked: Does the labor pool provide good employees any more?
In supermarkets, self service kiosks are being introduced to provide information, such as recipes, and for placing takeout meal orders.
Self service kiosks don’t necessarily replace employees, he said. In some cases, they assist them. One example is the information kiosk in a home improvement store that a clerk uses to help a customer find something. Another is an airline check-in counter.
Developers have found that technology is only part of the solution, Drain said. Before introducing a concept, it is necessary to understand the customer’s need.