I don’t know what the grocery store ecosystem is like where you are, but here in Los Angeles the self-serve checkout started moving in and taking over a few years back. Now, at any major supermarket, you’ll typically have one or two human cashiers and a dozen or more automated checkout systems. The only time I ever go to a human checker is if I have liquor of some sort. You can’t buy that at self-service because the robot can’t check your ID.
One of the problems with those automated checkout systems is that the area you put groceries in after you’ve scanned is is a bit on the small side. You don’t have an option of putting the scanned groceries somewhere else. The system is weighing each piece as you scan it, along with the overhead cameras and internal security cameras, to make sure that you’re not stealing. So if you have let some of the staples (canned goods, toilet paper, cereal, and so on) slide for a while and then decide to stock up, you can start to run out of room pretty quick.
When you have limited space jammed to the edge, then it’s time to start going vertical.
Our store has one employee attendant who babysits six stations and clears jams and helps those who are running into this system for the first time. My grocery mentor yesterday wanted to come and take a picture for winning this week’s “competition.” What the heck, why not? Do I win anything? Customer of the week parking? $20 off?
Let’s not be silly.