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Questions to consider when POS shopping.

The wrong POS system can hurt your profits and alienate your customers. Here are some tips to increase your chances of success with POS selection:


1. Insufficient planning is the number one mistake. Create a detailed action plan to select and install your system. Identify all the POS functions that your operation needs.


2. Is the POS system designed for your industry?


3. Does the POS provider serve customers that are the same size as your operation?


4. How easy is the POS system to use for all your employees as well as yourself?


5. How compatible is the POS system with other types of systems you already have or plan to buy?


6. Do they have a local presence for sales and service?


7. Can the system grow if you increase the number of locations?


8. Can the system be upgraded as new features are released?


9. Check system performance in the field for transaction and processing speed.


10. Is the system web-based (ASP) or resident at your location?


11. In addition to vendor costs are you factoring in on-going maintenance? phone only? on-site?


12. Does the support organization have a can do attitude and a 24/7 help desk?


13. Evaluate the training offerings and confirm your supplier can serve your location and your type of staff.


14. Call accounts that already have the system and see how satisfied they are.


15. Is it redundant? How do they back up, is it data and programs and how often? Automatically?


16. How easy is the Back Of House for the Owner and Manager? Especially reporting.


17. Can it be customized to fit your unique needs?


18. Once changes are made to prices, new items, etc do you have to restart the system?


19. What will be the number one factor, price, service, support, programming, reputation?


20. When comparing your expectations; note internet purchases are not local, they may not even have bricks and mortar. If they don't provide adequate service after the sale they may not be concerned, they have the whole world to sell too. Pricing can reflect this also. If you don't expect on-site service, after hours services, or programming and training -- you can still get local pricing from your local vendor just explain to the sales represenative that they need to quote this project as if they were in their garage office on the otherside of the country, and that you do not expect to be able to call and have on site support, programming or training without paying for a flight, hotel rooms, hourly charges, and all expenses. Be fair to get the best price be sure they quote comparable products, services, cabling, and what you as a customer are going to half to do. Will you be opening boxes and putting together everything, testing communications, backup schemes etc. be sure you are comparing your exact expectations.