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More than just a checkout, POS solution drives bottom-line efficiency

Posted May 13, 2010

Wasp QuickStore POS

Mastering the POS basics – quickly

As Rod Works was growing its business, the company struggled to find the right point of sale (POS) solution. In trying out various options, Rod Works fell into the same conundrum faced by many smaller retail businesses. Affordable POS systems marketed to small business lacked the high-level inventory functionality of the enterprise-sized systems used by large chain retailers. Yet these costlier solutions were too time-consuming for the small retailer to learn and use.

POS software should change your business to be more effective, not change your business just to use the software,” said Aaron Brackett, retail director for Rod Works. “We built our business in a what-if environment, where we continually evaluated best-case and worst-case scenarios for the future. That way, we could weather various financial circumstances and challenging economic times. As a result, we wanted a POS solution that provided great management insight and could grow with us over time – without costing a fortune.”

Five years ago, Rod Works purchased QuickStore POS from Wasp Barcode Technologies. Because the enterprise version of the software offers multi-location functionality, as the company grew it was able to install QuickStore at each of its four retail locations and two clearance centers, as well as its corporate headquarters and warehouse.

Designed for specialty stores, Wasp QuickStore strives to offer smaller retailers the same kinds of efficiencies that larger chains already enjoy from their expensive
enterprise-version POS products. These include high-end capabilities such as automated inventory tracking, e-mail invoices, report generation and more.

From shuffling items to managing inventory

Once Wasp QuickStore was in place as a checkout tool, customer satisfaction quickly increased. Rod Works then was ready to tackle its greatest challenge: bridging the gap between the warehouse and retail stores.

“We had struggled with this for years,” Brackett said. “We didn’t have an efficient way to identify store needs from the warehouse. This affected the entire process, from transferring product to the stores all the way up to product purchases. Too often, we had products sitting on warehouse shelves instead of store shelves.”

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Bank eliminates costly write-offs by Automating Inventory Control

Posted May 13, 2010

Wasp Inventory Control

Mired in spreadsheets

To serve its thousands of customers, Amarillo National Bank ordered large quantities of supplies, including deposit slips, banking forms, pens, paper and more. It relied on between 50 and 60 outside vendors to supply about 160 different items.

The purchasing department at the bank’s headquarters would order and store supplies for all 13 of its branch offices. When an individual office needed to replenish items, it would send a requisition to headquarters. The purchasing department would package and ship out the needed supplies.

Unfortunately, the bank’s inventory was being managed manually on two complex Excel spreadsheets. The first spreadsheet, which tracked vendors, featured between 50 and 60 tabs (one for each vendor) and 160 rows (one for each item). As items were received in stock, they were noted in the appropriate cell. Managing this spreadsheet took about one and a half to two hours per week. Plus, the process was prone to errors. If an error was inadvertently entered, back-tracking to find and correct the data was both time-consuming and frustrating.

The second spreadsheet included about 40 tabs (13 for branch offices and others for the various departments at headquarters), plus about 160 rows (one for each item). When a branch office or department faxed a requisition form, the purchasing agent would note in the spreadsheet which items were ordered. Each week, the agent spent from one and a half to two hours tabulating the orders for various departments and branches. The resulting sheet was sent to the accounting department, which would generate invoices for each branch office and department.

Because of the complexity of this process, numerous delays and errors would occur as the bank worked each month to reconcile inventory on hand and determine which items should be billed back to branch offices and departments.

The accounting department struggled to keep up with this time-consuming process. As a result, billing was constantly behind. This led to significant inventory write-offs of tens of thousands of dollars per year, since the bank could not account for the location of inventory items and bill for them in a timely manner.

Assigning costs – automatically

The bank knew it needed to eliminate the cost of inventory write-offs. Plus, accounting and purchasing personnel wanted an easier, faster way to order and account for items.

The bank purchased Wasp Inventory Control Pro, software that helps small businesses and departments within larger organizations know exactly how much inventory they have, where it is located, and what’s moving and what’s not.

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Lone Star College System automates asset management for big savings

Posted May 13, 2010

Wasp MobileAsset

Lost in the crowd

With over 70,000 students and employees, Lone Star College System (LSCS) owns and operates over 30,000 IT assets. Each of the community college’s five campuses and seven satellite centers was responsible for tracking its own equipment, including laptops, projectors, servers and switches. Many of the locations utilized Access databases or Excel spreadsheets for managing assets.

Relying on a manual asset tracking solution created multiple problems for technology managers and administration. Without a centralized database, it was difficult to locate specific IT assets.

The LSCS Vice Chancellor and CIO, Shah Ardalan, made having complete and accurate data a priority, and increased technology management accountability system-wide. An asset management solution was necessary to effectively track equipment lifecycles.

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POS at the LPGA

Posted May 13, 2010

Wasp QuickStore POS

A Small Business with History

For over 27 years, The Wegmans Rochester LPGA has been one of the most popular stops on the LPGA tour. It combines the world’s best golfers, the most enthusiastic crowds and many eager volunteers that join to raise funds for special causes. Disabled Children of Monroe County (DCMC), benefiting Camp Haccamo and the Sunshine Campus, uses the Wegmans Rochester LPGA as their main fund raising event. DCMC operates a store front that sells thousands of hats, shirts, shoes, and umbrellas during the week long event. The success of the event for DCMC increases every year, and the importance of correctly stocking, monitoring and reporting sales in such a short time frame increases each year as well. With this event being the main fund raiser for DCMC, “we just can’t have anything go wrong during the week” says Tim Groth, head of technology for Disabled Children of Monroe County.

The Technological Problem

“Our prior DOS based system was brutal,” states Tim Groth. “It was so difficult to use that we ended up with inaccurate data of what was sold. To add to the problem, the final inventory count must be completed before the vendors pick up their merchandise within hours after the tournament ends. The sales staff just could not keep up. By the end of the tournament they had no idea what they had sold,” Groth adds. It was obvious that help was needed in four main problem areas. First, DCMC needed a system that provided accurate inventory control and monitoring of shrinkage. Second, the system must be easy to implement and use, especially since the staff had little computer training and, in fact, were fearful of using new technology. Third, the system had to provide for quick and easy check out since there were a large number of transactions that were to be performed throughout the day. Fourth, the results had to be fast since this operation begins and ends in one week’s time! The challenge was to make the sales run as smooth as the green!

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