Automatic Teller Machine Servicers

ATM servicers make sure that ATMs are in working order and available to the public often 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The service needed by any individual ATM may be as simple as clearing paper jams or situating cash properly, or it may be more complicated, requiring an understanding of electronics and computer programming.

The work of ATM servicers varies according to the position. First line technicians replenish the money, making sure it is positioned properly and that no sensors are blocked; replace receipt paper; remove any obstructions in the machine and perform other routine maintenance; balance the machine; and remove deposits and deliver them to a central office. When an ATM seems to be working improperly, technicians troubleshoot and try to define the problem. They may also check security equipment, such as cameras and video recording devices, to ensure that it is working properly. Depending on the size of the city in which they work, ATM servicers may service 30 to 40 machines a day. These technicians are usually armed and drive armored trucks to and from the ATM locations. First line technicians are also stationed in the office to dispatch other technicians, count the money, and fill out forms for the banks. Processing deposits involves opening envelopes and documenting the contents, or doing the same with individually deposited checks. Supervisors train and oversee the work of technicians and assign them their routes. When understaffed, supervisors go out on runs. They also send out second line technicians when the first line technicians are unable to fix particular problems with the machines.

Second line technicians are typically on call and are paged when a repair is necessary. With an understanding of particular machines, networks, and electronic systems, they perform maintenance on the machines, replacing parts when necessary. They also perform preventive maintenance by testing machines. Technicians need to know how each network is balanced and what could go wrong. If the dispenser (the part of the machine that contains the money) needs to be serviced, first line technicians stand guard while the second line technicians make any necessary adjustments. A technician may be called in if a machine is unable to properly read bank cards because of worn magnetic heads or if it has a "pick failure" that prevents it from dispensing the requested amount of cash. If a problem is too extensive to be corrected on-site, the technician may take the whole machine, or parts of it, to a bench technician, who works in a repair shop rather than in the field.

Some technicians are trained to install ATMs, which can involve securing the ATM at a particular site (indoors or outdoors) and programming the machine. Technicians put up signs and awnings over the machines, and they also remove or relocate machines.

ATM servicers are increasingly repairing electronic kiosks that allow customers to purchase stamps, phone cards, and even tickets or boarding passes for travel by bus, train, or plane. Some ATMs and kiosks have Web capabilities, allowing for more direct marketing.

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