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Eight common mistakes

Wed 1 Feb 2012
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Mistake 1: Assuming all software is the same Vast differences exist between one solution and another. Your customer needs a clear and precise understanding of their own company’s requirements and goals. Every solution should then be analysed in terms of how well it addresses each of their goals. Mistake 2: Ignoring hard-to-quantify benefits It is difficult to calculate possible future gains such as increased productivity, improved customer service, better inventory control, faster register check-outs and centralised information for rapid decision-making after a new POS system has been successfully implemented. However, these types of benefits can dramatically improve the bottom line and should not be overlooked. Mistake 3: Passing the buck Top management and other key personnel within the customer organisation must be involved in the selection and the implementation process. Management needs to stay involved if the project is to be a success. Mistake 4: misunderstanding ramp-up and debug phases Many companies assume a well-designed system will operate at peak levels shortly after they make the purchase. The best system will not perform as expected until properly trained personnel have developed complete competency with the system. Mistake 5: The cheapest solution is the best Selecting a POS system based on price is equivalent to selecting the cheapest surgeon. In the long run, the cost of a poor solution is substantially more expensive than doing it right the first time. Customers should measure price in terms of a firm’s knowledge, experience, professionalism and depth of resources. Mistake 6: Buy POS hardware first Customers can save time and money if they select their retail management software first – this will have hardware and operating system requirements. In addition, each program will only function with certain types of printers, bar code scanners, cash drawers and card readers. Users can avoid frustration and save money if they choose the software first and the POS solution second. Mistake 7: Misunderstanding the benefits of automation Automating retail operations and related functions can save considerable time and money and contribute to high customer satisfaction. However, if your customers don’t also improve their current processes and the ways of interfacing with accounting software, bar coding system, credit/debit card processing systems and the POS equipment itself, automating a store won’t deliver the full return on investment required. Mistake 8: Not doing enough homework Analysing and then selecting a POS system takes time and effort. Information is critical to selecting the most appropriate system for your organisation.

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