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Open Cash Register Drawer Close up with Money.
Cash registers are in almost every store around the world. Today’s modern POS systems are fairly powerful and do just about everything. But, still, you need a process to handle and account for all of the store’s cash. To prevent mishandling and implement other safeguards, these internal controls are vital. This crucial process must be reliable and create an environment of operational efficiency along with bring assurance of reliable accounting records. Not only does mishandling of cash cost the business, it is one of the main contributors of shrinkage and loss in the store. Theft is the second common cause and it is made possible through an improper procedure of controls.

Cash registers play an important role in the process of counting money, reconciling receipts, and balancing the drawer which accounts for all of the day’s transactions. Modern POS systems even offer step by step instructions that will balance the cash drawer for employee guidance. Many store policies are created to further facilitate a cash management system that would ally in many areas. Cashiers have to make sure that everything adds up, otherwise things can go downhill quickly.

How to Balance a Cash Register

At the start of each shift, individuals are given the responsibility of counting the contents of a register to make sure of the exact amount of cash that is present, as the cashier will be held accountable at the end of their shift. At the end of their shift, the contents must be counted again and given a comparative glance to make sure everything is balanced. The register is balanced at the end of each shift to ensure that money has amounted correctly, none has been stolen, and no mistakes have occurred. In some stores, another employee must be present when the cash register is balanced. When all of the proper checks and processes have been accomplished, the cash will then go to the person who will deposit it into the bank.

Why is it Important to Balance a Cash Register?

Not only does balancing the cash register bring equilibrium to the cashier, it also gives further insight into how the money flows in or out. The cash register acts as a monitoring system of money movement and. if any is missing unexpectedly, it may indicate theft or carelessness. The key to success is being precise and providing accurate data regarding the cash flow. Regarding safety, a huge amount of money is never kept in the register. A minimum amount is kept to ensure safety in case of burglary or theft. Avoid keeping too much cash on the floor as it can be dangerous and prone to larceny. 

In addition, an entire sales report can be pulled up in an instant during any part of the shift. Documentation makes the cash drawer safe from mistakes and maladministration, so it always works in favor of the business.

Check out America's Best Bookkeepers
About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual accounting, providing services to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud-hosted desktop where their entire team and tax accountant may access the QuickBooks file and critical financial documents in an efficient and secure environment. Complete Controller’s team of  US based accounting professionals are certified QuickBooksTMProAdvisor’s providing bookkeeping and controller services including training, full or partial-service bookkeeping, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, vendor and receivables management, process and controls advisement, and customized reporting. Offering flat rate pricing, Complete Controller is the most cost effective expert accounting solution for business, family office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.

Point of sales computer terminal with touch screen tablet, cash register, mobile printer and card payment on a counter at a coffee shop.
Employees use sneaky ways to steal from their employers. They always think one step ahead of their employers and come up with unique techniques to trick and deceive them with their spiteful art. In 2017, a staggering 85,000 employees in the United State are reported to have stolen a total of $110 million from their employers. The data is collected from the field of retail only which is a shocking discovery for the people associated with this industry. Employees stealing from the cash register is one of the reasons why most start-ups fail to survive the first two years of operations.

Workplace theft has become a common occurrence in almost every type of business. It squeezes the profit margins of a business, which slowly and steadily eats up the entire business. The most common forms of theft in the retail sector are theft of cash and theft of merchandise. employees working in a retail establishment know everything about the business, including cash influx and outflow. Unfortunately, it is quite easy for them to steal from the business at a time of their own choosing without the fear of being caught.

Cost Of Employees Stealing From Cash Registers

One study finds that American retailers lost about $300 billion in goods and cash in 2017. These whopping figures reveal that there will always be employees that steal from their employers whenever they get a chance, especially when they are tasked to handle the cash register. This opportunistic behavior of the employees is costly to businesses, which often results in company employees overshadowing company interest and replacing it with their own that leads a company to fail miserably. Once all employees have collectively understood the benefits and advantages of moving together with the business interest, it brings about long-term sustainability and growth.

Undoubtedly, employees have the power to change the entire fate of a business by remaining true to their job. They can make a business grow exponentially and bring about significant returns. Where they are perceived as the ultimate game-changers, they can also make a business lose every penny. Employee threats can do serious damage to any business, especially if the business is of small scale.

How To Catch Employees Stealing From The Cash Register

Employees who tend to steal from you are always in search of loopholes that they can capitalize on. During shift changes, corrupt employees will always try to shift the cash shortage blame onto the next employee. Thus, cash register drawers must be assigned to one employee, instead of multiple people, in order to avoid internal conflicts. When multiple hands are involved, it gets harder to find the real culprit who stole from you.

Use Surveillance Cameras To Monitor Each Cash Register

Large retailers find surveillance or CCTV cameras quite useful for monitoring cash register drawer and to catch employees stealing from their cash registers. If your cashier intends to steal from you, you will know exactly where to check. Small retailers consider it expensive to install CCTV cameras, but such investments always pay off in the long run of the business journey. You can easily find inexpensive surveillance cameras available online and at local stores.

Place Extra Cash in the Cash Register to Know About the Intentions of Your Employees

This is a wise and easy way to know about your employees. Placing extra cash in the cash drawer reveals a lot about the morals of the person you are working with. If the extra cash is consistently missing, you will surely get to know who is stealing from you and whom to trust with handling cash.

Spot Inconsistencies in Your Records

Regular bookkeeping checks reveal the financial position of a business. A careful analysis should be made and discrepancies in cash and goods must be recorded for knowing where they appear to go missing. Prior to taking any action, such as firing an employee or filling a lawsuit, you must have concrete evidence of theft. 

Check out America's Best Bookkeepers
About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual accounting, providing services to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud-hosted desktop where their entire team and tax accountant may access the QuickBooks file and critical financial documents in an efficient and secure environment. Complete Controller’s team of  US based accounting professionals are certified QuickBooksTMProAdvisor’s providing bookkeeping and controller services including training, full or partial-service bookkeeping, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, vendor and receivables management, process and controls advisement, and customized reporting. Offering flat rate pricing, Complete Controller is the most cost effective expert accounting solution for business, family office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.