A municipality allows a state government in the United States to subdivide a state and respond to the need for public services, such as waste disposal, police and fire protection, and more, in a way that supplements established local and county government efforts.
There are over 19,000 municipalities in the U.S. Even though 90% of them have populations under 25,000, they all play a critical role in their communities.
Municipalities often handle large amounts of cash each month from payment transactions related to utilities, services, permit fees, and more. Without an efficient way to handle this influx of cash, municipalities will face the unenviable effects of manual cash handling procedures, often faced by other verticals.
The Risks of Handling Cash using Traditional Methods
Handling cash via traditional methods can have a measurable impact on a municipality’s overall operations and bottom line. Cash often goes missing, either from internal theft or error, and employees are taken out of their day-to-day tasks for bank runs, manual counting procedures, deposit preparation, and more.
These activities take employees away from what is most important – servicing clients in their community.
In addition to the labor factor, handling cash via traditional methods can also impact a municipality in other ways. Having ‘idle’ cash due to a missed bank run can affect a municipality’s working capital position. It also enables greater exposure to internal theft or ‘missing’ cash.
Fortunately, smart safes can alleviate many of these concerns for a municipality.
5 Reasons to Invest in a Smart Safe Solution
The following are the top five reasons a municipality should consider a smart safe to help with their cash operations:
- Improved Security
Smart safes offer a secure means to accept a municipality’s cash. Typically, once cash is placed in the smart safe, it is not accessible to anyone but the cash-in-transit (CIT) provider. This virtually eliminates the occurrences of internal theft.
- Improved Cash Visibility and Accountability
All smart safe transactions are traceable to the individual employee via a unique PIN assigned to them, enabling complete transparency and accountability for all transactions. In addition to further reducing the risk of internal theft, when a smart safe is connected to the municipality’s network, only authorized employees can access real-time activity – right from their desk.
- Faster Access to Working Capital
If appropriate arrangements have been made with its CIT provider and bank, the municipality can receive provisional credit for cash deposited into the smart safe, usually by the next business day. This gives the municipality much faster access to its money and negates the need for employees to make bank runs.
- More Efficient Use of Labor
By eliminating manual handling of cash, including the need to count money, investigate discrepancies, perform audits and reconciliations, and prepare deposits, the municipality can now deploy labor where it’s needed the most – helping customers.
- Improved Accuracy and Automation
With integrated bill validators, cash deposited into the smart safe is automatically counted and recorded. This eliminates the need for manual counting of cash that inevitably leads to error and unwanted bank fees. The speed and accuracy a smart safe provide brings an entire new level of automation to a municipality’s day to day operations.
Choosing the Right Smart Safe