Blake Snow

writer-for-hire, content guy, bestselling author

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Self-service retail kiosks gradually on the rise

The AP reports: “At airports, supermarkets and big-box retailers, ‘customer service’ in recent years has meant self-serve — aided by touch-screen kiosks. As digital kiosks become more user-friendly and capable of handling more complicated tasks, health care providers, fast-food chains and other businesses say trading face-to-face encounters for face-to-monitor transactions improves service and saves money.”

I consider myself one who prefers the personal touch in lieu of self-service kiosks, usually. At the post office, I bypass a line of 15 people in favor of the kiosks. I’m in and out in 2 minutes (because no one else seems to use the kiosk) while others can wait up to 45 minutes to send something. However, at Walmart and other stores employing self-service kiosk, I almost always opt to wait in line for 5 minutes to encounter a human.

I can appreciate the cost savings of kiosks from a business perspective, but the human element in me questions the so-called “improved service.” Our new motto as humans: Get in. Get out. Do your thing. Avoid humans at all costs because they get in your way by slowing you down. That doesn’t sound right…