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Is an ITM a Good Investment?

Image of a person speaking to a teller via ITM. The overlayed text reads, "Offer virtual service with a smile they can still see."

Interactive teller machines combine ATM functionality with the interactivity and service of a live teller. These machines allow our clients to service their customers more effectively, improve customer experience, and save on costs, resulting in a greater return of value than traditional ATMs. Keep reading this ITM FAQ to learn more about what ITMs do, their origins, and how they can save your business money while helping your customers.

What Does an ITM Do?

ITMs have the same functions ATMs do, with added benefits that are useful for most customers. They are the next level of technology and service for financial institutions looking to find more efficient and convenient ways to assist their customers. The latest terminals provide all the services customers expect from in-person tellers in relatively small form factors. ITMs work well in even the tiniest areas, so they are excellent for department stores, lobbies, and other compact locations. Here are some of the most frequently used ITM functions:

  • Cash Withdrawals
  • Check Cashing and Deposits
  • Bill Payments
  • Card Replacements
  • Funds Transfers
  • Money Orders and Bank Checks
  • New Account Openings
  • Bank and Investment Transactions
Image of a person speaking to a teller via ITM. The overlayed text reads, "Offer virtual service with a smile they can still see."

Here is How ITMs Differ from ATMs

How is an ITM different from an ATM? What advantages does an ITM offer customers that is not available from an ATM? The answers to these questions are an ITMs ability to connect a customer to a live teller. ITM technology allows a teller to assist the customer remotely via video chat. Sometimes the best way to meet a customer’s needs is to provide service from a real person, and that functionality is unavailable at a basic ATM. ITMs offer customer experiences that promote the financial institution’s brand, improve customer approval scores, and help the institution make more money per customer and interaction. ATMs are simple machines, functional but impersonal.

How Does an ITM Benefit the Customer?

The most significant difference between an ITM and an ATM is the value of human interaction. A live remote teller can offer more banking services than a traditional ATM and tailor each experience to the customer, allowing more opportunities for your financial institution. Having a guide ready to assist and answer questions at the press of a button makes customers feel more comfortable and encourages them to do more business. Customers also like that a live teller can assist them with I.D. verification when necessary. Access to funds in smaller denominations not available at ATMs is a bonus.

 

What are the Benefits of an ITM for the Financial Institution?

ITMs bring financial institutions several notable advantages, including:

  • Reduced Costs Over ATMs
  • Reduced Costs Over Branches
  • Business Expansion
  • Improved Service Quality
  • More Sales Opportunities

ITMs Improve Savings and Cost Avoidance

Using an ITM could generate massive savings, especially if your organization can transform the way it operates in the future.

Imagine how ITM technology can positively impact your labor expense. ITMs reduce the number of required tellers, allowing financial institutions to reorganize and use personnel more efficiently. Our ITMs have taken some financial institutions from 20% teller utilization to 80%. ITMs also lead to savings in terms of reduced investment in teller work environments. ITMs make work-from-home tellers possible.

There is also the potential for savings as ITMs allow institutions to rebuild or remodel branches that are much smaller than before the ITM. Running a smaller location means lower property, utilities, and building upkeep costs. Closing an ITM is also significantly less expensive and involved than closing or moving a branch.

Another set of costs that ITMs nullify is the costs of ATMs themselves. ITMs cover ATM functions perfectly while increasing features and functionality.

 

ITMs Help Financial Institutions Expand

The convenient form factor and the complete functionality of an ITM means establishing a new branch is easier than ever. A financial institution can place itself in a new area with minimal effort, which means fewer costs to cover more territory.

Financial institutions can take advantage of the remote service aspect of an ITM to offer longer service hours. ITM tellers do not have to be local, but simply online and available, so institutions can staff employees earlier or later as most beneficial to business.

More ‘branches’ and extended hours mean financial institutions have more opportunities and more time to create long-term customers. ITM technology allows institutions to touch more people, complete more transactions, boost revenues, and see a return on investment that standard ATMs will not replicate.

 

ITMs Improve Quality Scores

NPS scores give insight into what customers think about a financial institution’s service. Evidence strongly suggests that customers report greater satisfaction with ITM interactions than transactions with traditional tellers and ATMs. Customer satisfaction is the ultimate factor in customer retention, and NPS scores tend to tell the truth. ITM transactions are faster, they save the customer’s time, and computers do not make counting errors. ITMs drive excellent customer experiences that keep people banking with the institutions they trust.

 

Interactions with ITM Tellers Lead to Increased Sales

Many of the best sales opportunities happen when tellers and bankers have a customer right in front of them. The interpersonal connection allows customers to be more receptive to new ideas and pitches about the financial institution’s products. It is one thing to show a graphic on an ATM screen with a few words about a beneficial product, but there is nothing like having a conversation with the customer in person. Well, there is almost nothing like that. ITMs offer a live conversation with the customer that is as effective as in-person interaction. The customers and agents can see each other during these virtual meetings, setting the stage for the sale.

An interactive teller machine helps the financial institution as much as it assists the customer. Customers who choose to interact with an ITM agent want to speak with a live human, and they will be listening when the agent makes a suggestion.

 

Staffing Gets Easier

ITMs often improve staffing and retention efforts. People appreciate remote work opportunities, and they are more likely to remain in remote positions longer. Likewise, the virtual aspect of an ITM position means financial institutions can centrally locate these employees and build a rewarding work atmosphere and culture that could help keep employees happy. When holding on to a good workforce is proving difficult, ITMs contribute to employee retention.

 

ITM Benefits Make Financial Institutions More Competitive

ITM technology positions our financial institution clients to achieve improved results in terms of customer service and from an administrative standpoint, which means the clients are significantly better off in the long run. ITM technology allows institutions to lean on computers to handle the numbers involved in transactions while seeking and incentivizing staff members who are more adept at connecting with the customer, taking care of the customer’s needs, and getting sales. Why would customers leave for other institutions if your firm has the latest technology and delivers consistent, high-quality service? Why wouldn’t you take advantage of reduced overall expenses and a greater return on investment? ITMs are a powerful solution to move forward in the financial industry.

This May Surprise You, but ITMs Have Been Around for Nearly a Decade

Bank of America began using its first ITMs in 2013, and the technology has slowly but surely moved forward in the time since. An ITM is a powerful piece of technology, and businesses can often be hesitant to adopt new equipment. It makes sense for institutions to take time and analyze information before implementing new technology, but something happened recently that is priming more and more banking customers to take advantage of what ITMs have to offer.

Picture of 5 varying ATM models

On the COVID-19 Pandemic and ITMs

The situation around the coronavirus made many people less inclined to interact with someone in person when the meeting is not an absolute necessity. Businesses and individuals alike are more accustomed than ever to using technology to communicate in place of physical meetings. This change was challenging for businesses and institutions at the beginning of the pandemic, but people learned to use technology to its advantage and interact remotely. The change brought on by the pandemic makes ITMs even more impactful than they were designed to be. The ability to interact with a teller digitally and complete all the tasks that an in-person transaction would accomplish is important to many people who rely on financial institutions for banking and other purposes. ITMs are a proven solution to the problem of banking for customers who want limited interpersonal activity and need access to a teller.

 

ITMs Drive Results, But Investment is Important

Implementing ITMs is worth it, but they require effort and a financial commitment get started. Here are some things financial institutions will need to get the greatest benefits from ITM technology:

-The Infrastructure (Hardware and Software)
-Workstations for Remote Agents
-Training and Marketing
-Ongoing Support

 

Required Backend Infrastructure

Institutions preparing to use ITMs need the hardware and software to make all the components work together. This investment includes endpoint control and audio/visual software, core integration, a multi-user database, and a plug-in for item processing. Putting the right equipment in place is part of modernizing for the future.

 

Agent Workstations Make It All Happen

Like all employees, your remote tellers will need the equipment required to operate the ITMs and assist customers virtually, whether from a call center, an office, or from home. This means an investment in standard computer equipment that allows telecommunications. Agents will interact with customers in real-time, ultimately leading to a good return on the equipment investment.

 

Training and Marketing are Invaluable

We want to emphasize the importance of training your employees to provide excellent virtual service. Remember that this technology is about creating a consistently great experience for the customer. Start on the right foot with a team of reliable and experienced professionals who can help you establish a baseline for success.
Another detail of starting with the best foot forward with ITM service is getting the word out about it. We have found that the financial institution’s plans and marketing for an ITM location are the difference-makers in terms of whether the ITM meets expectations. It’s just like kicking off other new products and services in that an initial marketing push is paramount, but the results will be worth the time and effort.

 

Continued Support is Critical

Much like a new road will need maintenance and care over time, so, too, will an ITM and the team behind it need ongoing support to maintain success. Financial institutions should consider meeting the needs of staff and ensuring the completion of hardware and software updates as part of the investment required to get an ITM up and running. Continued support empowers ITM tellers to help financial institutions reach their goals.

Customers Fully Adopt ITMs After the Second Use

Institutions ask us about user adoption and whether customers prefer using an ITM. We found that customers never go back to using a standard ATM or talking to a teller in person after their second time using an ITM. The experience feels different from what they are used to the first time they interact with an ITM, and it feels more familiar as they begin their second transaction. By the end of that second experience, customers prefer to use ITMs as their primary method of interacting with a financial institution.

 

The Case Study of a Fully Outsourced Branch

One of our client institutions in Iowa outsourced completely using ITM technology. This branch employs a single ITM unit with no additional FTEs and no call center. A data firm handles the backend infrastructure, and there is no on-site IT team. The branch outsources monitoring and updates. When a customer accesses the ITM, the tellers on-site at other branches receive an alert, and one teller handles the transaction via a prepared workstation. This fully outsourced branch costs the institution less than $50,000 annually, not including real estate costs. This case study proves the concept of small remote branches. We foresee similar setups in grocery stores, hospitals, and even designated locations in small, isolated towns that would otherwise have no convenient access to a branch. ITMs open many possibilities for financial institutions to provide better customer service and meet business objectives.

 

Is an ITM Worth the Investment?

In most cases, an ITM is a worthy investment due to the flexibility and service improvements it brings to the financial institution and the value of the potential return on the initial investment. The cost avoidance, efficiency, and increased customer service capabilities make an ITM worth it. But each Financial Institution is different, and so are the circumstances involved in determining the ROI for such an expense. The good news is, we can help.

Edge One has worked to develop a comprehensive calculator that can help in determining costs involved, potential returns, and overall ROI. We would be happy to connect if you want to learn more about ITMs, their advantages, and how you might implement them in your budget for the coming year. Submit your contact information and we will be in touch shortly or feel free to call us directly.

ATM & ITM Hook and Chain Attacks are Not Going Away

Hook with Cash - Hook and Chain Attacks Cost You Money

A year ago, we featured a post that spoke to an increase in ATM hook and chain attacks. We wish we could tell you it is all behind us. However, these physical attacks on ATMs and ITMs have not stopped. We continue to see banks and credit unions suffer costly thefts and damages. Sometimes the thieves are successful at gaining access to the cash, sometimes they are not. But either way, damage is done. It is important that we continue to spread awareness of these hook and chain attacks and provide ways that financial institutions can remain diligent and protect their assets.

What happens during a hook and chain attack?

For an ATM hook and chain attack, criminals target freestanding outside lane drive-up units. This allows vehicles to pull close and hook through the depository and dispenser slots. The thieves attach a large hook through, attached with a heavy chain to the back of their vehicle. Once connected, they accelerate. The goal of these attacks is for the force of the acceleration to open the ATM and safe door. Regardless of whether the thieves gain access to the safe, the attempt rips the ATM from the island. This results in damages to the ATM or ITM beyond repair.
These attacks usually occur late at night or early morning hours. With the thieves ultimately abandoning the vehicle used in the attack, as it is either stolen or rented, and take off in another vehicle standing by. These hook and chain attacks take professional thieves less than 2 minutes to pull all the cassettes from an ATM.

Hook on Chain - ATM security to protect against hook and chain attacks

What can I do to protect my ATM or ITM?

Thieves continue to show determination to find ways to gain access to ATM cash stores. Fortunately, there are a couple of preventative measures that you can take to help deter would-be thieves from attempting an attack on your ATM or ITM. We will discuss a couple of Edge One’s product offerings that will provide your financial institution with an added layer of security.

NCR Safe Slot Reinforcement Kits - Protect your ATM from Hook and Chain Attacks

NCR Safe Slot Reinforcement Kits

Designed as a countermeasure to hook and chain attacks, these kits remove all available space around the depository and dispenser slots, while reinforcing the surrounding area. Each ATM requires two kits to ensure total protection.

Security Gate from TPI - Protect Your ATM

ATM Security Gate

There are a variety of security gates available designed to help protect your ATMs from theft. Depending on the manufacturer, the security gate can attach to the concrete island or a slimline enclosure, similar to a kiosk. These gates use strong materials that come in a variety of colors to coordinate with your institution’s existing structure.

Contact us today to secure your ATM or ITM

Don’t leave your ATMs or ITMs vulnerable to a costly physical attack. The expert team at Edge One can provide you a no-obligation risk assessment and help you establish a plan of action to ensure your machines are safe. For more information about these, as well as other security offerings, Contact the team at Edge One at 800-423-3343(EDGE).

ATM Jackpotting – What You Need to Know

ATM jackpotting isn’t new. Back in 2010, a security researcher named Barnaby Jack took to the stage at a Black Hat security conference to demonstrate this ATM exploitation, making two ATMs dispense fake paper currency. It would be 8 years later when the first ATM jackpotting attack would occur in the United States. Now, this form of ATM attack is on the rise. So, what exactly is jackpotting and what can you do to protect your ATM investment?

What is ATM Jackpotting?

With ATM Jackpotting, thieves typically target stand-alone or retail ATMs in locations that help them avoid a bank’s security. They will often dress as a service technician and access the ATM using force or keys that are purchased easily on the internet. Once they have gained access, the criminal can connect to the ATM and install malware that enables theft of the cash reserves. They will often have an accomplice that will visit the ATM once they have left to collect the cash.

Laptop Keyboard with Hacked Key - Protect your ATM from jackpotting with Edge One

How do I protect my ATM from jackpotting?

While cyber criminals continue to look for vulnerabilities, there are several things that an ATM owner can do to help mitigate their risk. These low-cost, simple practices can help avoid being left vulnerable to cyber jackpotting attacks.

Security camera - Secure your ATM

ATM Placement

These thieves are on the lookout for ATMs that allow them to get in and gain access without detection. Unfortunately, many retail establishments will leave their ATM in a dark area in the back of the store or restaurant. It is important to place your ATM in a well-lit area that is easily monitored by staff and security cameras. Be sure to place security cameras with angles that provide a clear view of both the back and the front of the machine.

Software Updates

ATM manufacturers release regular software updates and related modifications that ensure ATMs stay ahead of potential risks and emerging threats. Old, outdated ATM software leaves your machine open to a variety of issues, jackpotting included. It is important that you install software updates as soon as possible after release.

Know your technicians

Familiarize yourself with the company responsible for the maintenance, replenishment and updating of your ATMs. Get to know their vehicles, uniforms, and your assigned technicians. Do not be afraid to ask for identification. Your ATM management company should be forthcoming and communicative so that you can stay informed of any changes in schedule or assignments.

Contact Edge One to Protect Your ATM Assets

The Edge One team can provide you with a free risk assessment to determine any vulnerabilities that may be present. Our team of professionals will provide a plan of action to ensure your ATMs are up to date, safe, and secure. For more information, Contact the team at Edge One at 800-423-3343(EDGE).

Upcoming PCI / EPP Compliance Mandates

In 2019, PCI (Payment Card Industry) announced new revisions for PCI PIN security requirements. PCI’s function is to set standards that ensure secure handling of customer PINs and data. PCI planned for a phased implementation of updates to provide a more secure method of transferring encryption keys from an ATM’s host processor to the ATM. Circumstances, such as Covid-19, resulted in an update to the compliance deadline dates. The dates below reflect these changes.

PCI PIN Security Requirement Dates:

  • December 31, 2022: Replace ATMs or upgrade EPP for ATMs with PCI PTS v1 or older
    (v1 EPPs are Less secure technology)
  • January 01, 2025: EPP hardware, firmware and software uses TR31 Phase 3 “Key Blocks”

Are your ATMs compliant?

In order to ensure the integrity of your ATMs, the current hardware and software needs an update. Failure to do so leaves your ATMs vulnerable. These vulnerabilities include risk of fraud, security attacks, data compromises and loss of revenue. As an ATM owner, the ATM networks consider you liable for any fraud or data breach involving your ATM. You could assess penalties or have any non-compliant ATMs shut down.

What actions should you take to ensure your ATMs are ready?

Prior to January 1, 2025, all ATMs will require, at a minimum, a software update. In addition, you may be required to replace your electronic PIN pad (EPP) or your ATM entirely. If you own or operate an ATM, do not leave this to chance. Contact the team at Edge One at 800-423-3343(EDGE). We will help audit your ATM fleet to ensure you are updated and compliant.

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Staffing Shortages in Banking
Does your branch experience reflect the new normal?

Help Wanted Sign in Window - Staff Shortages in Banking

The last couple of years have been difficult. The pandemic showed up and turned the world upside down. In 2020, as the government and health professionals sought to contain the spread of Covid-19, life changed. Schools closed and many began working from home. We saw businesses faced with the difficult decisions of shutting down or finding safe ways to continue operating. The impact was devastating. Too many businesses were unable to recover. Those who have, have had no other option but to adapt.

In 2021 we saw things begin to open back up. With the availability of vaccines, mandates and regulations have begun to lift. People have returned to the activities they had missed. Going out to eat, taking in a movie, watching live music. Things have seemed to be returning to some form of “normal”. Yet, there is something that didn’t return. Workers. By now, everyone has seen the “Help Wanted” signs everywhere. Restaurants, retail stores, healthcare, and even banks are looking for help. For many, returning to work was either too risky or not an option due to individual circumstances. Every industry is experiencing some sort of staffing shortage, and it is impacting everyone. Flights are being canceled, there is a disruption to the supply chain, and some stores have reduced their hours or closed completely. Businesses are once again looking for ways to continue to operate or face going out of business.

Help Wanted Sign in Window - Staff Shortages in Banking

Increasing efficiency during staffing shortages

While adding staff would be a seemingly simple solution, this staffing crisis doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. One way that businesses can help mitigate this situation is by improving efficiency. By automating time consuming tasks, businesses can get more done with less manpower. This not only has the obvious benefit of remaining open and operational but can also help to save money. At Edge One, we offer a selection of equipment and services that can help you to improve the efficiency of your business operations.

Cash Automation

For businesses who handle a lot of cash, employees must take time away from other duties to count down tills, perform audits, and secure cash. Manually handling cash is not only a time-consuming process, but it increases the risks of theft. Security experts estimate that between 25 to 40 percent of employees steal from the companies they work for. The use of cash automation technology can reduce the amount of time staff spends handling cash. This reduces theft and accounting errors while improving the ROI.

    Edge One Cash Automation Products

Cash Recyclers

Coin Counters & Sorters

Cash Discriminators

Self Service Bank Kiosk

Self-Service Kiosks

The pandemic forced banks to close their doors and encourage their customers to use alternatives for their banking needs. Contactless options, such as digital banking and drive through tellers, have allowed banks to safely continue to service their customers.  Now, financial institutions are facing the staffing shortages that are plaguing other industries. Banks and credit unions must find new ways to increase efficiency while. By using Self-Serve technology, they can enhance their customer/members relations and improve teller efficiency. Products, such as NCR’s SelfServ line, allow customers the option to handle their own banking transactions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This frees up tellers to focus their efforts on other tasks, while still providing your customers access to the services they need.

Interactive Tellers (ITMs)

ITMs provide another way that financial institutions can further optimize their business operations. Drive through teller lanes have helped banks and credit unions service their customers/members during the pandemic. However, one downside has been longer lines and increased wait times. And you still need branches adequately staffed to manage these lanes. Virtual tellers offer a way to maintain that “face-to-face” contact using less tellers. Tellers can be located in a single centralized location, with the ITMs as their satellite locations. Many financial institutions who have adopted Virtual Tellers have found they needed less real estate to service the same number of customers.

Woman using an interactive teller ITM
White Armored Car - cash-in-transit services from Edge One

Armored Services

Another opportunity to improve efficiency is with armored car services. No need for staff to transport deposits, taking up valuable time and risking robbery and theft. Armored vehicle services can handle cash and check pickups, processing, and ensure your ATMs / ITMs are always ready for customers with cash replenishment. Free up your existing staff so that they can focus on other tasks.

ATM Managed Services

Edge One offers an ATM managed services program that helps reduce the tasks that you and your staff have on your plate. With our managed services, we handle everything. From purchasing the equipment, to ensuring it is always up to date and compliant, to analyzing the profitability of the terminal. The only thing you have to worry about is supplying cash and reviewing your easy-to-understand monthly statement.

Ready to Run Your Business More Effectively?

Whatever the situation, the experts at Edge One can help. Contact Us and we will help save you valuable time and money. Give us a call at 800-423-3343(EDGE) and we will put you in touch with a Financial Industry Solution Specialist will help you come up with a tailored solution that fits your needs.

Are We Headed Towards a Cashless World?

Cashless society signs

Since PayPal launched in 1999, we have seen a dramatic transformation of the payment landscape. Digital payment technology has continued to advance with bitcoin, mobile wallets, and pay by app options.  Digital payments are being adopted everywhere, from your local grocery store to the corner coffee shop. As of 2019, global digital payment volume reached a staggering $4.1 trillion. It is clear that consumers are growing increasingly comfortable with these technologies.

While the movements to digital payment options was already evident, the pandemic saw a shift in digital over cash usage. Cash is made of a fibrous material, and a notorious germ spreader. Thanks to the fear of Covid-19, cashless innovations have only continued to rise. This has left many speculating that we may see a future free of all forms of cash. While studies are showing that we may be headed towards a “less cash” society, completely cashless is unlikely.

The Problem With Going Cashless

Going Cashless is Discriminatory

During the height of the pandemic, some businesses chose to eliminate the use of cash as payment to help avoid the spread of the Covid-19 virus. This was met with mixed reactions. While some accepted and understood these business’ decisions, others felt this was discriminatory.

In a 2019 report by the FDIC it showed that 5.4 percent (7.1 million) households were unbanked. It also showed that the majority of those unbanked households are homeless, minorities, and low income. A move to cashless would result in this 5.4 percent being excluded from operating in society, making the already vulnerable even more vulnerable.

Checks Cashed Neon Sign - Unbanked households
Image of 100 dollar bill with stickers - online shopping privacy

Privacy

The problem with digital, is that everything can be tracked. Consumers already must deal with retailers tracking their every move. There is a constant fear of having their data sold, hacked, and even stolen. In recent years, there been a growing awareness of online tracking and a push for digital privacy regulations. There are now protections in place to govern what websites and online retailers do with consumer data. So, what about in-store transactions? Consumers should have the right to privacy when it comes to the purchases they make. Paying with cash allows for purchasing goods and services, while keeping transactions private.

Is Cashless legal?

There are no laws that exist prohibiting businesses from not accepting cash as a form of payment. However, some lawmakers are taking action to keep businesses from discriminating against those who wish to pay with cash. The cities of New York, Philadelphia, and San Francisco, as well as the States of New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts have laws in place to protect those unbanked customers who rely on cash. Many more lawmakers are proposing bills that would require businesses to accept cash.

Cost

Cashless payments may be convenient for consumers, but they are expensive for businesses. If you are a business owner that accepts cashless payments, you are already familiar with the fees. In 2019, card issuers made $80billion in transaction fees. In addition, online payment services such as Square and PayPal, also take a percentage of sales for the privilege of using their services. For a small business, all these fees add up quickly.

FEES on calculator - Merchant processing fees

Cash is Still King

There is no doubt that we will continue to see growth and advancements in the digital payment landscape. But there are still real needs, and benefits, for paying with cash. Here at Edge One, we are experienced and knowledgeable when it comes to cash handling. We carry a wide range of products designed to keep your cash handling processes efficient, safe, and security. For more information, check out our Cash Handling Products or Contact Us at 800-423-3343(EDGE)

Cash Management for Cannabis

cannabis leaf on a pile of cash - cash management for cannabis

The cannabis market has seen tremendous growth over the last several years. Medical marijuana is now legal in 36 states, with 18 legalizing recreational use. Cannabis sales in the United States is projected to reach $92 billion by the end of 2021. This is an increase of more than 30% over the past year. Experts are projecting that by 2025 the cannabis industry should see upwards of $160 billion. And, with the growing acceptance of the idea of legalizing marijuana, we should see these numbers continue to rise.

Despite a growing acceptance and an increasing number of states allowing some sort of legal sales of cannabis, it is still considered a “schedule 1” substance by the DEA. This means it is still illegal at a federal level. Banks under the FDIC are bound by federal law. Under strict interpretation of this law, banks are unable to offer cannabis business even basic banking services. This includes loans, credit, and even checking accounts. Accepting, transporting, and even storing money earned from cannabis becomes complicated. Until federal laws change, cannabis businesses are in a tough spot when it comes to cash management.

The Cannabis Cash Management Challenge

Without access to services such as online payments and credit card processing, cannabis businesses have no choice but to deal in large amounts of cash. Managing the cash necessary for daily business is not only a challenge, but it can be dangerous. It creates risk factors such as employee theft, accounting errors, and robbery. Cannabis retailers need a safe way to count, transport, and store their cash.

Easy Access to Cash

The cash challenge isn’t just limited to you and your business. It applies to customers as well. Not everyone carries cash in their wallet. Having an on-site ATM allows your customers to easily withdraw cash and purchase the products they need. Easy access to cash can provide revenue for your business through increased sales and ATM surcharges. Edge One has retail ATMs that can provide your customers on-site access to cash.

Cannabis ATM
Billicon

Safe and Efficient Cash Handling Solutions

When it comes to receiving cash, the risks are many. The money must be counted, moved, and stored. The more cash is handled, the more the risks increase. The use of cash automation equipment can help you reduce these risks while increasing efficiency. Edge One sells an assortment of cash automation products that ease the handling of cash and coin.  With cash automation, you can quickly and accurately count, store, and dispense the cash needed for daily operations. And, by reducing the number of hands touching and counting cash, you reduce the risks of accounting errors and employee theft.

Safe Cash Management for your Business

If you run a cannabis business and are struggling with the management of your cash, we can help. Our cash automation experts can help you determine the solution to fit your needs and budget. We can handle it all, from sales and installation to service and support. To find out more, Contact Us at 800-423-3343(EDGE)

The Shift to Software Subscriptions

Saas image - The Shift to Software Subscription

Consumer behavior is shifting, and many find the convenience of subscription appealing. From streaming television and music to meal preparation and household cleaning products, consumers now subscribe to almost everything. It is convenient. It is easy to just enter in your credit card and have a service delivered to you. Software is no exception. Over the last decade, we have seen software companies making the shift from traditional licensing to a subscription model. Experts are estimating that by 2023, 53% of all software revenue will come from subscriptions.

Why the shift?

It isn’t just the consumers driving this change. Companies are increasingly switching to a subscription-based revenue model. Subscriptions mean a consistent source of revenue that businesses can depend on. It isn’t just beneficial for businesses, however. Subscription based software also allows for affordability with a lower barrier to entry. Rather than a large sum paid out for a piece of software, you pay smaller amounts over time. Add in no-long term contracts, and it is easy to see the appeal of this software purchase option for the consumer.

Perpetual Licensing

Perpetual licensing is the more traditional model we are all familiar with. You pay a fee up-front for the right to use the software indefinitely. While this may sound like the more appealing option, there are limitations. Typically, the license may include some limited support and updates for a short time frame. Once that time is up, you no longer have access to those updates or support. Additionally, the software may be tied to a particular piece of hardware. If you upgrade that hardware, you are left having to re-purchase the same software. That can get expensive. Often a perpetual license comes at a large price tag. This barrier to entry can be cost prohibitive for small or start-up businesses.

Image of Software - ATM software from Edge One
computer-3219130_640

Subscription Licensing

With software subscriptions, consumers pay a monthly or yearly fee for access to the software. Sometimes there is a per-user fee. While subscribed, users can use the software and have access to support and updates, indefinitely. The subscription is typically tied to a user, not a piece of hardware. Meaning, you can continue using the software, even if you upgrade your hardware or change your system entirely. The up-front subscription fee is typically much lower than a traditional license, making it more affordable to get started.

ATM Software Subscription

With the move to software subscription happening everywhere, it should come as no surprise to learn that most major ATM manufacturers are doing the same thing. To streamline software offerings, subscription offers a much more common industry practice. Edge One always strives to be on the cutting edge with our hardware and software offerings. We have already begun updating some of our software offerings to reflect these changes. As always, we work to provide our customers with top-notch value and service.

Edge One’s Software Subscription Value

Simplification: Simpler product structures mean you only pay for what you use. No need to re-purchase every few years.

Entitlement: License transferability is now permitted on subscriptions. Licenses are no longer tied to individual hardware. this means there is no need to buy new licenses when hardware is replaced.

Flexibility: Simpler fleet management. Add/remove hardware, software options, or products. Adjust your subscription based on your needs. This provides a flexibility that legacy perpetual licensing didn’t have.

Choose Edge One for Your ATM Software

Edge One has always brought to the table a comprehensive list of offerings to keep your fleet in top shape. We have the latest in software offerings and software maintenance to keep you up to date and running smoothly. Our Compliance Audit Program ensures you remain PCI compliant. And, if you want to focus less on your ATMs functionality and more on running your business, Edge One’s ATM Management Program delivers. To find out more, Contact Us at 800-423-3343(EDGE)

Cencon Lock Product Update

Alert Icon - Potential Alarm Override at ATMs

Potential Alarm Override at ATMs

Edge One has been made aware of a potential security vulnerability that could exist for customers deploying the DormaKaba Cencon locks, installed on your ATM or ITM, configured with the optional SHUNT feature. If the SHUNT feature is enabled, access to your ATM/ITM safe, generally after hours, would be allowed with the alarm being bypassed when a correct combination and smart key are used on the Cencon lock. Specialized tests have shown, however, that this signal can change state with relatively low-level vibration or impact, which could compromise the intended security of the lock, depending on how the SHUNT function has been configured. Meaning, if your DormaKaba Cencon lock is impacted or tampered with in a certain way there is potential to disarm the alarm without any sort of key or combination.

Due to the serious implications of inaccurate alarm signals reporting, Edge One recommends that customers apply remediation to mitigate against this issue.

This will not impact you if ANY of the following are true:

  • The ATM/ITM does not have a DormaKaba Cencon lock.
  • The ATM/ITM safe is not alarmed.
  • There is no afterhours access to the ATM/ITM.
  • You are using an alarm panel at the ATM/ITM to disable the alarm.

You may be impacted if:

  • The ATM/ITM is alarmed and does not have an alarm panel or box to disable the alarm.
Alert Icon - Potential Alarm Override at ATMs

Edge One Recommendations

Edge One recommends that customers determine if they are impacted by the potential alarm override. If it’s determined that you may be impacted, we recommend reaching out to your alarm and security vendor. They will need to configure the DormaKaba SHUNT feature to use the burglar switch rather than the lock shunt.  Feel free to supply them the attached diagram and instructions.

This recommended remediation will require a site visit to each impacted terminal by your alarm vendor during which they will require access to the safe. Note: DormaKaba, Kaba Mas and Mas Hamilton all refer to the same product.

If you have questions, feel free to contact your Edge One Financial Solutions Specialist.

Get Rid of High Credit Card Processing Fees

In today’s world, it is essential for businesses to offer their customers the ability to pay by credit card. But unfortunately, credit card processing comes with fees. For every sale made, Visa, MasterCard, and other credit card platforms take their cut. And these fees are increasing. In the past 10 years, fees collected by Visa and Mastercard have more than doubled. For a small business operating with thin margins, these fees can be taxing. Some businesses have been forced to stop accepting credit cards, while others have tried offsetting these costs by raising prices to recoup these fees. What if you could virtually eliminate these costs? With the cash discount program from Edge One, you can do just that.

Help Your Revenue Grow

Credit card fees may not seem like much at first glance, but they add up. Fortunately, there is a way to reduce credit card processing fees. Business owners can offset credit card processing fees while collecting more sales revenue through a cash discount program. These programs allow businesses to offer incentives to customers who pay with cash rather than using a credit card. Those who choose to pay with card pay a specified amount, with the processing fees built into the cost of the product. By forwarding fees to the customer, you can maintain product pricing.  Businesses participating in the cash discount from Edge One see an average savings of $12k annually in merchant processing fees.

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Will cash discounting upset my customer?

Merchants have been reluctant to adopt a cash discount program because they are afraid of upsetting their customers. There is little need to worry.  Your customers are not being penalized for using their cards, but rather rewarded for paying cash. Studies have shown that for most consumers, this is not an issue. In contrast, these studies found that consumers are 11% more likely to switch from their preferred payment method to cash when a cash discount is offered. There are many factors that play into a customer’s choice in payment method. They may not have cash on hand or may prefer to use their credit card to receive associated rewards. When polled, very few consumers cited surcharges as a reason for deviating from credit cards.

Edge One provides detailed signage at the front door, time of purchase, and on the receipt. This assures that the customer is aware of the fee prior to making the purchase, giving them time to decide whether to pay with cash or with card. Our customized terminals automatically add the additional percentage in, so there is no extra work or math for your employees.  It’s that easy.

Find out more about Edge One’s Cash Discount Program

We can provide you with a free analysis that shows your current program and how it stacks up against the Cash Discount Program, revealing your savings potential. Our program is risk free. If you decide this isn’t for you, you can return to your original program. Contact Us at 800-423-3343(EDGE) and the team at Edge One will help you choose the program that is best for your business.