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Card Reader Pens

MrGSTLman

Small Format TL
Joined
Jun 23, 2011
Messages
272
Hi Folks - just a question. We use the Hypercom Card Reader pens (Red and Black with the thick tip) at our store. They ALWAYS seem to be breaking and we are constantly having to order more. What makes it worse is the Card Reader can't process RedCards without a pen (can't sign). Does anyone else have this problem? Is there a secret to keeping them intact and working, or are they just terrible quality and almost guaranteed to break?

Thanks!
 

redeye58

Hasta Ba Rista, Baby!
Joined
Jun 9, 2011
Messages
19,661
It doesn't help when guests keep jabbing the readers hard enough to crack the screen or when moms let kids 'sign' for them because junior will scream & yank the stylus out, plug & all. We used to have to order them by the dozen until TIPP changed it to cost per one.
One of our GSTLs used to keep a 'good' one in the drawer until it was needed, then swapped it back out.
 

mrknownothing

purveyor of things
Joined
Jun 10, 2011
Messages
10,148
MrGSTLman, it's a combination of terrible quality and destructive guests.

One of our GSTLs used to keep a 'good' one in the drawer until it was needed, then swapped it back out.
At my store, they just switch broken card readers with ones from the lanes that we don't use as often. They won't order any until enough are broken that the store can't function.
 

StaticSun

Former Front-End Guru
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Jun 12, 2011
Messages
2,008
Who orders card readers???? You should never have to order any more. If you have 18 lanes, you'll be bound to have AT LEAST one or two lanes that aren't used on a regular basis. At most, I'd recommend to have one or two extra readers in the GSTL/GE office.

Card reader breaks
Take card reader from un-used lane and swap with defective unit
Send out defective unit to be replaced
???
Profit.
 

MrGSTLman

Small Format TL
Joined
Jun 23, 2011
Messages
272
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #5
Who orders card readers???? You should never have to order any more. If you have 18 lanes, you'll be bound to have AT LEAST one or two lanes that aren't used on a regular basis. At most, I'd recommend to have one or two extra readers in the GSTL/GE office.

Card reader breaks
Take card reader from un-used lane and swap with defective unit
Send out defective unit to be replaced
???
Profit.
StaticSun - been there, done that. We don't order card readers -- they get sent out via CompuCom. It's not the card readers, though (although they do take a beating -- I send out at least one or two a week). I have done my share of switching out readers, etc. Actually, it gets so bad that when we DO get new readers in I am replacing a different one that has broken, not one I have switched out. My readers at CL1 and CL20 have been gone since December.

I guess I should resign myself that these reader pens are just bad quality -- I am just wondering if there is anything I can do to keep them from breaking... it's getting to be a pain because the team members will not ask for RedCards because they have no pens for the readers.

RedEye -- hiding a pen may be an idea worth investigating.
 

pzychopopgroove

cyberpunk//my little pony
Joined
Sep 23, 2011
Messages
1,652
Hi Folks - just a question. We use the Hypercom Card Reader pens (Red and Black with the thick tip) at our store. They ALWAYS seem to be breaking and we are constantly having to order more. What makes it worse is the Card Reader can't process RedCards without a pen (can't sign). Does anyone else have this problem? Is there a secret to keeping them intact and working, or are they just terrible quality and almost guaranteed to break?

Thanks!
Tell the 'guests' that the card reader and pen is not a dart board?
 
Joined
Jun 8, 2011
Messages
30,593
You can hit k8 & have them used a real pen to sign the slip. At my store, bounce card readers from unused registers too. My Gstl does have an extra pens too.
 

StaticSun

Former Front-End Guru
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Jun 12, 2011
Messages
2,008
This only works for credit card transactions. It doesn't work for Red Card apps.
I was processing one of those reloadable AMEX cards at guest service today, and whenever I would scan the barcode it kept telling me to go to a different register! I was flabergasted as to why it was telling me. Was the register bad luck? Was it a security measure?

Somebody unplugged the credit card reader and took it without putting a new one in.

:|
 

redeye58

Hasta Ba Rista, Baby!
Joined
Jun 9, 2011
Messages
19,661
Somebody unplugged the credit card reader and took it without putting a new one in.

:|
Oh, I'd seriously impact someone's cranial focal if they did that to me!
Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr...
 

MrGSTLman

Small Format TL
Joined
Jun 23, 2011
Messages
272
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #14
I was processing one of those reloadable AMEX cards at guest service today, and whenever I would scan the barcode it kept telling me to go to a different register! I was flabergasted as to why it was telling me. Was the register bad luck? Was it a security measure?

Somebody unplugged the credit card reader and took it without putting a new one in.

:|
I've had that happen to me and it drives me nuts. I can tell you all that the pen situation at our store has gotten so bad we are sending a HUGE stack of paper credit slips to the auditor. Usually it is a minimal amount but this time it looked like an actual brick (before we got the digital readers).
 
Last edited:

redeye58

Hasta Ba Rista, Baby!
Joined
Jun 9, 2011
Messages
19,661
I wish we had the other type of Hypercom readers.
Instead of the magnetized tip, it's just a plastic stick stylus.
There's a superT nearby that has these.
 
Joined
Jul 1, 2011
Messages
2,726
We have to clean our styluses in pharmacy 2-3 times a week because they get so "gunked" up with crud, they stop working. Interestingly, nobody EVER thought to clean them until I actually LOOKED at one a few months ago and realized how nasty it was :bad: A few swipes with a paper towel sprayed with alcohol and they're (almost) good as new ;)
 

Jettajunky

Ex-Front End Bangarang!
Joined
Sep 15, 2011
Messages
132
The tips of ours aren't what stops working, it's where it's connected to the card reader that always kills it. People jerk on the pens so hard sometimes it pulls the whole damn thing off the counter leaving one or two of the little prongs inside the reader and the other two still hooked to the pen. Or they just get so worn out that the whole piece is really wobbly and for it to work you have to hold it in while the guest is writing.

Also like was talked about in the meme thread people jab the hell out of them. Yesterday I was clear down on 14 and I had to scream at a guest on 2 bc I could hear her practically punching the thing, she thought I said try harder and then she cracked the screen...dumbass

Red my old SuperT had the ones you were talking about, I'm pretty sure they're slooooowly phasing those out though.
 

Jettajunky

Ex-Front End Bangarang!
Joined
Sep 15, 2011
Messages
132
**** being practical and nice I'm done with that, you get the same **** with different people everyday so it's a constant battle that we'll never win. Until everyone is required to work at least a year in retail and a year in the fast food industry before they can get another "better" job the world will never be happy or peaceful. If we were all required to do this soooo many people would have so much more common sense and decency that we wouldnt have to put up with this **** on a daily basis. I don't know maybe the people in my store are just really dumb. I've worked at this store for more than 6 years and I can definitely tell that the "type" of guest that shops here has gone down hill significantly and it's only getting worse.

Sorry to hyjack the thread, just needed to get that out.
 

MrGSTLman

Small Format TL
Joined
Jun 23, 2011
Messages
272
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #19
The tips of ours aren't what stops working, it's where it's connected to the card reader that always kills it. People jerk on the pens so hard sometimes it pulls the whole damn thing off the counter leaving one or two of the little prongs inside the reader and the other two still hooked to the pen. Or they just get so worn out that the whole piece is really wobbly and for it to work you have to hold it in while the guest is writing.

Also like was talked about in the meme thread people jab the hell out of them. Yesterday I was clear down on 14 and I had to scream at a guest on 2 bc I could hear her practically punching the thing, she thought I said try harder and then she cracked the screen...dumbass

Red my old SuperT had the ones you were talking about, I'm pretty sure they're slooooowly phasing those out though.
Jetta -- Amen! I have spent more time performing surgery trying to get the broken pieces out so I can replace the pens.
 

redeye58

Hasta Ba Rista, Baby!
Joined
Jun 9, 2011
Messages
19,661
Jetta -- Amen! I have spent more time performing surgery trying to get the broken pieces out so I can replace the pens.
Tweezers work the best. Req some from cosmetics.

@Jetta, re: rant - to be expected. Only surprised that it doesn't happen more often.
 
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