I visited the Menard’s store in DePere, WI yesterday, a new super-duper-hooper-mega hardware store that just opened in February. I was very impressed with the size, the openness, the selection, the quantities and the prices weren’t too bad, either. (It’s like a Home Depot or Lowe’s chain.)
But what struck me most was the checkout counter. Never saw it this way before. The clerk and the customer are on the same side of a long bench. You can wheel a cart into a small niche in the counter and the clerk unloads it. You are generally standing beside or behind him, so you can see the register display as long as he isn’t blocking it. You have to walk around him to get to the credit card swiper, and bagging is the customer’s responsibility. I found myself sort of milling around the register as he handled the stuff.
Has anyone seen this kind of checkout system? The clerk said it was “OK,” but I think he was being diplomatic. I’ve only used it once, so I haven’t developed an opinion on it yet. And I wonder just what the reason for this design is. For one thing, it looks like it would be less secure. The clerk could be opening the cash register while you are behind him, then he has to turn around to hand you anything. Seems stupid. What’s the point? Is this going to be used for banks and tellers next?