Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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checkout timer

to enable a fast lane for shoppers who checkout faster than usual
  [vote for,

Every time a cashier finishes ringing up a customer's purchases, the cashier hits a button which starts a timer, and it doesn't stop timing until that customer walks away. The time is uploaded to the customer's loyalty card account, which maintains a running average. After reaching a sufficient number of checkouts, say 5, the average is tallied and if it's below a certain time, that customer gains access to the fastlane checkout queue, where only other customers with speedy average checkout times are allowed. Perhaps a facial recognition system would help keep people from trying to sneak in.

The idea is not to punish those who are slower than average, but to reward those who are faster.

21 Quest, Jan 15 2011


       Behold ! Immediate bestowment of farinaceous substances.

       // facial recognition system //

       ... and big blokes with scars, dark glasses and extending batons to "re-educate" offenders round the back of the store, by the waste bins. One tooth per offence, when no more teeth remain, start smashing fingers.
8th of 7, Jan 15 2011

       Well yes, but we prefer to let them make their own introduction.
21 Quest, Jan 15 2011

       Elitist, but I like. +
blissmiss, Jan 15 2011

       But how can you go faster then the cashier can bleep your items?
zeno, Jan 15 2011

       Zeno, that's why the first sentence states that the timer doesn't start until the cashier is *finished* bleeping your items. From the time you are told how much you must pay until the time you have finished paying, stopped telling the cashier your life story as you dug for loose change in your cargo pockets, and walked away. This is what you can control. I'm also considering an online survey that can be taken when you get home, so overly chatty cashiers and slow trainees can be reassigned to non-fastlane checkouts.
21 Quest, Jan 15 2011

       Sorry, missed that part. You get my bun now.
zeno, Jan 15 2011

       Thank you, good Baker!
21 Quest, Jan 16 2011

       (-) I sympathize with the impatient, but I'd prefer a world where the money that could buy face-recognition lane guard systems is instead used to hire more cashiers. That way, everybody benefits, not just fast people.
jutta, Jan 16 2011

       I like the idea behind the idea, if you know what I mean: give customers some reward for their own efficiency.
Jinbish, Jan 16 2011

       The "carrot and stick" approach has merit. If they're slow, throw carrots at them. If they're still slow, hit them with a stick.

       Legislation to prohibit "Attempting to turn a simple purchase into a social interaction" should be brought in as a matter of urgency.
8th of 7, Jan 16 2011

       Jutta, to implement the "more cashiers" method of dealing with the problem would mean buying more registers and installing more checkout stations for the cashiers to operate. This is a vastly more expensive (thus less likely to happen) solution than a single security camera at the fastlane wired to the store's existing camera monitoring sytem. All it would require is the facial recognition software to install on the existing computer. If stores thought hiring more cashiers was cost-effective, they would do it.
21 Quest, Jan 16 2011

       // hiring more cashiers was cost-effective //

       Actually, "If stores thought hiring more cashiers would make them more money, they would do it."
8th of 7, Jan 16 2011

       Most often, the stores I frequent have 10-15 lanes and only 2 cashiers actually working. More cashiers would be good, but I also like the reward incentive here. It would get my wife out the door faster.
RayfordSteele, Jan 20 2011

       That's been my experience as well, Ray. The problem isn't the number of checkouts.
21 Quest, Jan 21 2011


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