Automated teller machines, more affectionately known as ATMs, have been a part of our lives since the 1970s. They are beacons of automation, self-service and convenience. It started with the introduction of the humble Docuteller at New York City's Chemical Bank in 1969, while the first fully functioning "Total Teller" was introduced in 1971, following the awarding of the patent in 1973. The ATM has had a stubborn long life since then, and went on to become a revolution of its own, and in keeping with times, spinning off other device innovations like the digital “ATM” and interactive kiosk. 



  • Kiosk transactions were $607 billion in 2008.
  • Kiosk transactions expected to pass $775 billion in 2009.
  • Kiosk transactions hit $1.6 trillion by 2013.
  • Number of self-service kiosks worldwide was over 1 million in 2009
  • Number of self-service kiosks worldwide jumped to 2.56 million in 2014.
  • Top kiosk applications in 2009 are entertainment, retail and travel.


Their uses are evidently unlimited from banks to airports, health clubs, movie theaters, libraries and now even justice services and community corrections.


Today, through reentry modeling, more than 4.5Million offenders are out of Jail/Prison and report to a Probation or Parole Officer. While caseloads rise, many probation departments are considering using or have already deployed kiosks and are also now looking into VIDEO kiosk to help manage their probationer caseloads. A kiosk provides probationer self-service for a case management system, much as an ATM provides self-service for a banking system. Kiosk sessions replace or supplement in person face-to-face meetings with probation officers, thereby enhancing an agency’s ability to monitor probationer activity.


How will VIDEO kiosk technology support the corrections population?


A probationer checks-in to a kiosk and has their identity verified through biometrics such as fingerprints or hand scans, and then answers a standard set of questions through touch screen monitors. If additional information is requested, the probationer can select a VIDEO icon on the screen that starts a video call with a probation officer, community corrections officer, community based organization counselor, substance abuse counselor, housing specialist, teacher, instructor, physician etc.


VIDEO Kiosks can become a standard supervision tool in many jurisdictions across the globe. This is not surprising, as kiosks are pervasive throughout our society, and have a very high customer-acceptance rate. Indeed, it’s hard to find people who haven’t used them. Further, research has shown that low risk probationers tend to do better under the kiosk model than under more intrusive personal oversight models. Kiosk systems are also excellent for effectively optimizing existing resources, and they provide a useful basis for rethinking and reengineering an agency’s operations. With a VIDEO kiosk, one probation officer can effectively handle a caseload of 500 or more simultaneously, whereas a probation officer without a kiosk can effectively handle perhaps twenty percent of that number. VIDEO Kiosks would be especially useful to organizations hit by budget cuts that need the benefits of well-deployed technologies and the business process improvements they are capable of producing. Thus, the success, convenience, accuracy, and timesaving features of kiosks have allowed them to proliferate.


But it’s not enough simply to obtain and install a VIDEO kiosk. To get the best results, you have to have an operational plan to leverage the technology. That operational plan would focus on a number of key areas:

  • Governance
  • Building a business case
  • Determining what style of Kiosk system
  • Development
  • Deployment
  • Maintenance


Without seriously putting in place Governance and failing to examining and envisioning the workflow Kiosk will be supporting, any kiosk investment will likely be less than satisfactory. Conversely, by reorganizing operations to most effectively utilize VIDEO kiosks, the entire agency will benefit from looking at its processes from a whole new perspective.


What are your thoughts on the use of Kiosk technology for the community corrections population? Do you believe it to be the silver bullet to address rising offender caseloads? It would be be great to hear from others on this topic. And if you’d like additional information on Video Kiosk solution ideas, please reach out to Polycom Industry experts at industry.solutions@polycom.com.



This blog is part of a series of 25 blogs that take a look at how Polycom has transformed industries and business functions.

These blogs are a variety of retrospective, current and visionary perspectives with the common thread of unleashing the power of human collaboration. Follow the hashtag #Polycom25 on Twitter for tweets about this significant anniversary in our history.

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