Surpassing POS Implementation Hurdles

Automating business processes bring about many benefits for the enterprise, but implementing the system can cause many months of headaches for most IT managers. Joel Galit, IT manager of Victoria Court, a local chain of hotel and motel establishments, shares the birthing pains in deploying POS systems, during Computerworld Philippines' executive briefing on Point-of-Sale Systems in August.

Speed and Accuracy. Processing customer payments, according to Galit, should be done in seconds, as longer processing times will lead to unsatisfied customers. Mistakes should be avoided too, since they delay the transaction period. "A satisfied customer is our bread and butter," he emphasizes. "They affect our bottom line, so it's very important that we have the right speed and accuracy on the POS."

Cost and ROI. In the world of technology, systems obsolete quicker than the everyday bread. "An ROI of more than three years is a big no-no," Galit points out. Additionally, costs of operating the system should be manageable as well, "and should not exceed the benefits [of the system]."

Security and Control. There are instances when employees commit fraud by not using the POS system when recording sales. "If you don't have the right system, you can't trace that," Galit says. Preventing against external--but more importantly, internal--fraud is an important aspect of implementing the POS system.

Scalability. One consequence of a rapidly evolving technology is the need for systems to adapt to growing changes, POS systems included. "POS systems should be adaptable to changes need by the business, and to be able to do that, it has to be scalable," Galit suggests, adding that if information needs to be fed to the POS, it should be able to accommodate it, no matter the size or format.

User-Friendliness and Acceptance. Face it, change is inevitable. But inefficiently effected changes can lead to grave consequences. "People are used to the system they consider as their comfort zone. No matter how good your POS system is, if they are not used to it, they will resist using it," Galit says. By ensuring the user-friendliness of the system, management can effect a user buy-in for the system to be accepted.