Options and benefits to integrating your POS system

By B. Leslie Baird

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Integration

A point-of-sale (POS) system simplifies many aspects of daily business. You should also consider POS integration options to maximize your benefits. POS services are no longer limited to completing transactions and processing credit cards. A wealth of other services can be incorporated to make business management efficient.

Inventory Control

Consider the ability to quickly identify key items and track inventory and sales in a single system. A restaurant operation will benefit from on-demand tracking that can let you know when you’re low on frequently ordered items. The same system can alert you to overstocks, allowing you to create a special on products that would otherwise spoil.

Employee Management and Payroll

POS integration can easily include employee tracking, with systems designed to record clock-in and -out times. An additional benefit to monitoring activities on POS terminals comes from the ability to track high and low sales times. By knowing the daily trends of a restaurant or store’s business, you or your managers can adjust schedules to meet demands.

Precise sales records can make payroll calculations easier. Tracking restaurant employees sales for required tip reporting or managing commission payments through POS information can take much of the guesswork out of your daily operations.

Customer Relationship Management

Customer relationship management (CRM) solutions can be added with POS integration. While you track sales, you can also identify customer trends. When you notice an upswing in sales for a given product or service, you can send emails to customers that alert them to a sale on a complementary product or service. If you notice a downturn, you can send out questionnaires to determine if customers have grown dissatisfied.

Multiple Store Management

The General Store offers a software package called Host Store, for example, which consolidates the sales and associated bookkeeping and inventory needs for multiple business locations. Remote business locations communicate through file transfer protocol (FTP) and you can choose how each individual process is handled.

Restaurant Manager, another company, offers a POS solution that can integrate online orders. Additional software options can give you table- and bar-side POS and handle delivery orders. Customer loyalty programs and even reservations can all be handled through one, easy-to-use system. Businesses that use self-checkout or self-service functions can also integrate these transactions into their POS system.

Consolidating sales, inventory, and accounting into a single data source will simplify your day-to-day operations. You can track business trends and profit-and-loss information for one business or multiple locations without switching data bases. Adding efficiency can also help you reduce costs, avoid errors, and potentially eliminate fraud.