Ever had an issue with trust? Service stations do. Well, at least those that expect all their customers to prepay,
I'm sorry to say that I avoid prepay stations religiously and I wonder how many other people share a similar view and what impact it has on business.
I wonder if an attended forecourt makes a difference -- I have an inkling that it does.
I know why they do this prepay business -- it's the lack of trust for some of the customers. It's the robberies, and drive-offs and there are safety issues for staff, especially late at night.
It's no one-off thing that service station owners are trying to prevent. It is a regular occurrence, which I'm assuming insurance isn't going to continually cover.
But does a prepay system really mean more money for a business owner? Is it better to have no customers or a percentage of drive offs? Either way, it's not a pleasant thing to rationalise or forecast.
I know margins are generally small at the pump -- a lot of service stations I see only really make money on grocery items.
If ever I did drive away accidentally without paying, I'd be embarrassed and have no problem fessing up, paying and apologising. I know my wife has prepaid then driven off without filling up.
I wouldn't want the attendant's pay docked for my mistake. And I sure wouldn't want my mug on the photo board outside the servo. I also sympathise with the business owner. I've read comments on social media saying this is a risk for business owners. The fact anyone thinks they should just accept this as risk is as ridiculous as docking a worker's pay.
Those problems, the real problems of theft and robbery, are social problems. There are people who think it's acceptable to do this.
Trust is one of those unmeasurable things that has an impact on how a business performs. How a business drives positive relationships will help in its success.
Jeremy Tauri is an associate at Plus Chartered Accountants.
Phone: (09) 438 3322
Fax: 438 8455
134 Bank Street, Whangarei
If we had to sum up Brent and the team at Plus CA it would be - humorous, efficient, professional with a real focus on making your money work to its best ability for you...we will continue to deal with them even though we are moving overseas as we know they have our best interests at heart.
Jeremy thank you for your patience, assistance and general chit chat over the years. I would have absolutely no issue in recommending your services to everyone and anyone – in fact, I do.
We recently employed Jeremy Tauri of Plus Chartered Accountants and have been thrilled with the improved service we have received. Jeremy is really approachable and always available to answer queries. At his instigation we have set up quarterly meetings so that we are regularly reviewing our business and avoiding any ‘end of year surprises’.