A few thoughts on choosing a POS Specialist.
While you are researching Point of Sale Software and POS systems, it's the right time to be thinking the POS Specialist about who will install, support, train and deal with the many unseen details that point of sale systems involve.
There are many POS resellers (VARs/Value Added Resellers) around. But, it behooves you to do the same due diligence you would before hiring a doctor or lawyer. That is to say, do your homework! The investment you make in your point of sale system may well run into the tens of thousands of dollars - not just in money, but in time setting it up and getting it going. It would be nice to be sure to know
that the POS VAR you have chosen has the appropriate experience and expertise to make your installation successful.
Some questions to ask prospective resellers:
- How long have they been installing point of sale systems?
- How many systems have they installed?
- Can they provide references? (Make sure you call a few.)
- Are they certified? (Generally either by the vendor of the software they are selling, or by an independent organization like the RSPA (Retail Solution Providers Associations)?
- How much training is included? (10 hours? 20 hours? Do you have to prepay for blocks of time?)
- How many support hours are included and how much does a support contract cost and what does it cover? Is it 24/7, 9am to 5pm? Is it on-site, or do they dial in to your computer, or is it just phone support?
- Take your time and research the product and the VAR thoroughly. Buying a software product is kind of like getting married - it is a long term commitment. You will likely be spending more time with your POS system than your spouse. It's best to make sure you are really compatible.
In short, choosing a software vendor is an extremely important process. The software you select will be in your business for many years. Taking some time to evaluate POS software vendors is time well spent.
Written by Craig Aberle