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최종편집 : 2019.10.10 목 18:58
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Kiosk, Who Is This for?
Sim Seong-a  |  tlatjddk2019@cau.ac.kr
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승인 2019.10.04  21:32:48
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These days we can easily see people ordering through unmanned machines everywhere. Unmanned touchscreen advanced multimedia devices that provide information services to users are called 'kiosks'. As information technology advances and workers' minimum wage continues to rise, a growing number of shop owners are introducing such unmanned ordering machines. At this point, however, the introduction of excessive kiosks is premature. Also, there are concerns about social adverse effects such as job losses, so the indiscriminate expansion of kiosks should be regulated.
Then why is the use of kiosks rapidly expanding? With these kiosks, labor costs can be reduced. In addition, as the sales settlement is streamlined, it increases the efficiency of operations, which is why store owners are getting a lot of attention. However, this is only an optimistic forecast if Kiosk operates normally without the inconvenience of both consumers and clerks. According to the National Assembly Research Service, 40 percent of Kiosks installed by local governments are not accessible to people with disabilities. Mechanical features that do not provide height control or voice support means that kiosks cannot guarantee accessibility to the disabled. Even for older adults who are relatively inexperienced in using touch screens, it is not easy to place orders without any explanation for use. As such, the practice of pushing ahead with the expansion of kiosks solely for profit growth without countermeasures being taken against consumers will cause obvious damage to shop owners as well. This is because consumers who experience inconvenience in using kiosks will naturally be reluctant to order. In addition, clerks who have to deal with the inconvenience of customers are also forced to suffer setbacks in their work processes. A restaurant in Jung-gu, Seoul said, "We deployed staff in charge of kiosks separately because consumers were unable to adapt to the situation, and we did not have the effect of reducing labor costs overall". On the other hand, large job losses are expected in the service sector by Kiosk, according to Big Data, an analysis of job openings by job category in the first half of 2019 conducted by 'Saramin'. In other words, kiosks are causing social chaos for both workers and employees.Thus, the introduction of kiosks, which are not premised on the measures against adverse effects, cannot be seen as helpful to anyone.
In accordance with the automation era, store owners' moves to reduce labor costs and increase profits by introducing kiosks are spreading. However, the expected benefits from Kiosks cannot also be guaranteed unless careful consideration of the social class that fails to adapt to technological advances and suffers from digital alienation is given priority. Therefore, it should be recognized that it is premature to introduce Kiosks recklessly. Furthermore, there should be discussions first on education policies that help adapt to high-tech devices, the development of kiosk devices that are available to everyone, and the resolution of employment problems.
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