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Managing Employee Payroll Deductions, Gift Cards, and Layaways with your POS system

Payroll deductions. Every company or institution that offers employee payroll deductions in their retail areas such as cafeteria, coffee bar, gift shop, or company store has nothing but good things to say about the impact on sales. It’s the enabler behind a $5.00 latte purchase the day before payday. The key is automating it, so as not to slow down customer traffic. Manual systems can be tough, requiring cashiers and volunteers to check a list to see if an employee is valid, and write up a slip for the employee to sign. Every two weeks the food services and store managers combines and totals the employee’s payroll slips, and then send them to payroll for payroll to enter manually, and then posts payments.

What can be available is automated imports of employee files from payroll (which can spot terminated staff as well) that then supports swiping the employee’s badge, letting the software check the employee’s balance against the credit limit.  Automatic printing of the customer AND the signature receipt may be turned on or off, according to preference. Just before payroll runs, employee numbers and deduction amounts are automatically transmitted to payroll.  And then, crème de la crème, the actual deductions taken come back automatically from payroll, and the balances are adjusted.

Departmental charges are also automated, allowing for accurate charge backs to the appropriate department, as are physicians’ charges. Statements can be printed, or sent to accounting for their departmental adjustments.

LAYAWAYS  What if your company or hospital doesn’t permit Payroll Deductions? How can you make an expensive item obtainable to an employee or customer who isn’t able to spend a large amount of money all at once? Layaways are experiencing a revival in many retail areas – Target and Wal-Mart are now advertising the availability of Layaways.

Your POS product may be able to provide this tool for you. It can allow you to attach a layaway to a customer number (your employee’s badge), and track the items, and the payments as they are made against the items on layaway. So stockroom space is tight? If you can print an open layaway inventory list at any time, so you can see what items are due for pick up, and bring them over from the warehouse!

GIFT CARDS  Gift cards have been well received and are a great way to keep money in the retail areas. These aren’t just presents for one employee to give to another; they have a couple of other great uses! A gift card can be given to a customer to offset a return – the retail manager doesn’t have to give back cash, or write out a credit slip when a pricey item is returned. She’s keeping the money in the store. One other elegant use for gift cards has been the sale of those cards to administration, for a handling fee, plus the card value, for service recovery and employee rewards.