Access Control Self-Service Revolution

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Before 1916, if you wanted goods from a grocery store, you would hand a list of items to a clerk, who would then go through the store, gathering the goods on your behalf. And then, one fine day in Memphis, Tennessee, Piggly Wiggly opened its doors to the world. Under the guidance of Clarence Saunders, this unassuming grocery store on 79 Jefferson Avenue introduced the novel concept of marking individual prices on items, gave customers shopping carts and allowed them to choose the goods themselves. The store marked the birth of what we now call ‘self-service’ and revolutionised the industry.

And the revolution is still underway. Just a few short years ago, the only way to get an airline ticket was to visit a travel agent, book a trip and wait for your tickets to arrive in the post. You'd then need to visit the check-in desk, speak to a member of staff, who would verify the information on your ticket matched the details in your passport. The airline staff would then check your bags in, before you could finally make your way through security.