Sirena: First Dominican Stores with Auto Checkout

NALs

Economist by Profession
Jan 20, 2003
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Sirena has become the first Dominican store chain with auto checkout. Sooner or later was going to reach the DR. I have mixed feelings about this. The DR isn't like the USA? What will cashiers and bag boys do once they are laid off?

The first machine is already working at Sirena Market in Lope de Vega. Eventually, all Sirena hypermarkets and Sirena Market stores will get them. Expect other Dominican companies to follow in the footsteps.

Potentially bad news for cashiers, but potentially good news for customers that don't want to deal with horrible customer service when buying a few things.

I guess once this makes it to the Sirena in Puerto Plata and Sirena Market in Sosúa, Las Terrenas, and Bávaro we'll see more expats explaining how it was trying them. Who knows, mqybe Playero will get a few machines first that Sirena Market in Sosúa,

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malko

Campesino !! :)
Jan 12, 2013
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Finally !!

I choose which store I shop in back home by how easy it is to check out / pay.
 

Kricke87

Well-known member
Feb 16, 2021
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This will never work here, they just don't know it yet.
I guess the cashiers and bag boys are going to have to become security instead, making sure that everyone has paid for what they leave the store with.

We have this system in Sweden, and Swedes in general are honest people.
Nevertheless, stores that have these systems in place lose millions of $ in revenue each year because people are not honest.
Instead of scanning let's say 3 packs of a product, they only scan 1.
So if that's a problem in a "first world" country, how many of you think that Dominicans in general are going to be honest and scan all of their products correctly??
 

malko

Campesino !! :)
Jan 12, 2013
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This will never work here, they just don't know it yet.
I guess the cashiers and bag boys are going to have to become security instead, making sure that everyone has paid for what they leave the store with.

We have this system in Sweden, and Swedes in general are honest people.
Nevertheless, stores that have these systems in place lose millions of $ in revenue each year because people are not honest.
Instead of scanning let's say 3 packs of a product, they only scan 1.
So if that's a problem in a "first world" country, how many of you think that Dominicans in general are going to be honest and scan all of their products correctly??

The side you set down the product calculates the weight and density of whatever you scan. Maybe not in Sweden but in France, Switzerland and the UK at least.

Which means if you scan 1 product but set down 3, the system blocks itself and an employee has to come round and get it going again.
 

Kricke87

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Feb 16, 2021
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If people refuse to use it they will cancel it .
I refuse to use self checkout .....i do not work at the store and i prefer to keep other people employed
Yeah well, I prefer to not have to stay in a queue for 30 minutes if I'm only buying a carton of milk.
So if it's available I'll always use that option, not because I care if the store is making a higher profit or not, but because my time is more valuable than $.
 

Kricke87

Well-known member
Feb 16, 2021
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The side you set down the product calculates the weight and density of whatever you scan. Maybe not in Sweden but in France, Switzerland and the UK at least.

Which means if you scan 1 product but set down 3, the system blocks itself and an employee has to come round and get it going again.
Okay, don't really understand how that would prevent misuse. Don't really understand how that would work though, how would they obligate you to set anything on any side of any scanner?
In Sweden, they don't have any scales or anything that calculates anything you put anywhere.
Instead they just make random checks, either complete checks where they check the entire purchase or other times they only check a few articles to make sure that they have been scanned correctly.
And if there's a mistake, initially you get checked more regularly, and if they notice that you have a lot of mistakes many times, they ban you either temporarily or permanently from using that function.
 

malko

Campesino !! :)
Jan 12, 2013
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Okay, don't really understand how that would prevent misuse. Don't really understand how that would work though, how would they obligate you to set anything on any side of any scanner?
In Sweden, they don't have any scales or anything that calculates anything you put anywhere.
Instead they just make random checks, either complete checks where they check the entire purchase or other times they only check a few articles to make sure that they have been scanned correctly.
And if there's a mistake, initially you get checked more regularly, and if they notice that you have a lot of mistakes many times, they ban you either temporarily or permanently from using that function.

You arrive at the self checkout, there is a space where you can dump all your stuff, on the left side of the scanner.

Then you scan your articles one by one, and deposit them on the right side of the scanner thing.
Before you start, the machine prompts you to set a bag on that spot, the right hand side.

It is set up that if you scan an article and for whatever reason do not put it on the bag, the system blocks itself.
Likewise, if the weight/density of the scanned product that you deposited in the bag does not correspond, the system blocks itself.
And you need an employee to come over and unblock it.
 
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SantiagoDR

The "REAL" SantiagoDR
Jan 12, 2006
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Many times the cashiers don't have enough change to cash a $1,000 or $2,000 note at LaSirena and call a supervisor or get another cashier to change it.

Another reason to doubt the feasibility of this working here.
 

josh2203

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Dec 5, 2013
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This will never work here, they just don't know it yet.
I guess the cashiers and bag boys are going to have to become security instead, making sure that everyone has paid for what they leave the store with.

We have this system in Sweden, and Swedes in general are honest people.

Thankfully that's the only place I've witnessed this even in the DR, but Ferreteria Ochoa in Santiago at least used to check through all outgoing shopping carts after the checkouts at the door (despite the fact that there are not self--service checkouts) against the receipt... So worst case scenario, even though you COULD potentially save time with a self-checkout, what if they need to implement lots of security checks due to "irregularities", which would not only stop people at the doors but also potentially block the doors and just cause chaos...

Another problem I see is that how many people are going to know how to smoothly use the self-checkouts... If one gets blocked, also the potential security at that checkout point is occupied and what if a second is blocked by the customers incompetence, then there is no saving time anymore, and now there are "tapones" within La Sirena in two points...

I hope they think this through, but yes, if I would not have deal with cashiers that much going to the supermarkets there, I would be nothing but happy...
 
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Jan

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Jan 3, 2002
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Hmm..self service at the store and still gas stations don't have self serve. It hope it works out for them but I just can't see it any time soon. I never used one before but then I have not left this country for almost 13 years now.
 
Jan 9, 2004
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Likely to be both a blessing and a curse.

Self checkout is or at least has been offered for the most part in conjunction with live cashiers.....at least in the US. I would expect in the DR they will employ, or try to employ it that way as well.

This allows those with a small number of items to check out fairly rapidly. It also allows the stores to reduce payroll and theoretically at least, increase profits.

The downside is loss of employment opportunities for some and additionally lots of "shrinkage" to the business owners. People have already devised a number of ingenious ways to avoid the scanner or defeat it.

So to combat "shrinkage" retailers have employed receipt checkers at the exit to manually check receipts. This in many cases has defeated the concept of fast in fast out as the lines to check receipts can sometimes be long. Those of us in the US see this more at super box stores like COSTCO/SAMS CLUBS/BJ's. In the DR I have experienced that slow receipt check process at Pricesmart.

As NanSanPedro alluded to above.................shopping on the 15th and 30th could become much more challenged than it is already.




Respectfully,
Playacaribe2
 

AlterEgo

Administrator
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Jan 9, 2009
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If people refuse to use it they will cancel it .
I refuse to use self checkout .....i do not work at the store and i prefer to keep other people employed

I absolutely agree. The only exception is Sam’s Club, they have a wonderful app. You scan each item as you put it in your cart, hit “checkout “ button, and walk out the door.
 

chicagoan14

Newbie
Apr 2, 2019
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I went to Mcdonalds the other day where they have the kiosks. They asked if i was paying with card and directed me to there. So each other kiosks had an employee, and i asked the girl that if they had to have employees at each self-checkout isn't it useless? and she goes " people do not know how to use them"
I guess the same concept with ATM's and many people opting to go into the bank for simple transactions. Also think back to the thread about the ice cream vending machine guy and how folks told him he'd need someone to work the machine because of the culture here. 5
 

chicagoan14

Newbie
Apr 2, 2019
185
142
43
Likely to be both a blessing and a curse.

Self checkout is or at least has been offered for the most part in conjunction with live cashiers.....at least in the US. I would expect in the DR they will employ, or try to employ it that way as well.

This allows those with a small number of items to check out fairly rapidly. It also allows the stores to reduce payroll and theoretically at least, increase profits.

The downside is loss of employment opportunities for some and additionally lots of "shrinkage" to the business owners. People have already devised a number of ingenious ways to avoid the scanner or defeat it.

So to combat "shrinkage" retailers have employed receipt checkers at the exit to manually check receipts. This in many cases has defeated the concept of fast in fast out as the lines to check receipts can sometimes be long. Those of us in the US see this more at super box stores like COSTCO/SAMS CLUBS/BJ's. In the DR I have experienced that slow receipt check process at Pricesmart.

As NanSanPedro alluded to above.................shopping on the 15th and 30th could become much more challenged than it is already.




Respectfully,
Playacaribe2
Definitely. You go to many walmarts stateside and there's 1-2 casheirs amongst all of the lanes. Urging people to go to the kiosks. I imagine they have some type of formula where theft and honest mistakes are less costly than all the expenses that come with paying each employee.
 

NanSanPedro

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Apr 12, 2019
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I went to Mcdonalds the other day where they have the kiosks. They asked if i was paying with card and directed me to there. So each other kiosks had an employee, and i asked the girl that if they had to have employees at each self-checkout isn't it useless? and she goes " people do not know how to use them"
I guess the same concept with ATM's and many people opting to go into the bank for simple transactions. Also think back to the thread about the ice cream vending machine guy and how folks told him he'd need someone to work the machine because of the culture here. 5
Which McDonalds? I haven't been to one in a few months but the one across the street from Caribe Tours on 27 de Febrero had unmanned kiosks. 3 I think. And I didn't use them and paid with a credit card. But that was probably in April or so.
 

tee

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Sep 14, 2007
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Hmm..self service at the store and still gas stations don't have self serve. It hope it works out for them but I just can't see it any time soon. I never used one before but then I have not left this country for almost 13 years now.
I personally love the fact that the gas stations don't have self serve. Staying in my nice air conditioned car and not having to stand outside in 30 degree heat to pump gas is perfect and I hope it stays that way! The amount of jobs this provides throughout the country is huge. I am not a big fan of self check out at grocery stores as it takes away much needed jobs. I was recently in the UK and I went in to many stores that had self check out but I always saw staff members assisting people with the system so it kind of defeats the purpose. Most of these self check outs were cashless. The amount of times I have been behind someone in a supermarket here in the DR that try to pay with their card only for the card to be declined due to lack of funds is very regular, so this means that a staff member needs to be called to cancel the sale. One thing that you see often here is that people overspend and so they ask the clerks to remove some items so that they can afford the purchase....that can't happen on a self checkout unless you call a staff member.