POS Industry Giant Epicor Makes Improvements
Epicor Software Corporation has released a new version of the company’s flagship Epicor Retail Store suite, which functions as the critical Point-of-Sale (POS) backbone for a significant number of specialty, mass merchandise, and department store retailers.
Like any good POS, the latest release of Retail Store 6.3 is designed with the customer shopping experience in mind. The update aims to improve store productivity and transaction security while technology enhancements render it faster and more scalable with improved flexibility.
“Today’s retail environment is terrifically challenging; consumer spending may be down, but demands and expectations are greater than ever, driving retailers to focus on enhancing the customer experience to attract and retain customers and improving efficiencies,” said Randy Tofteland, executive vice president, retail software for Epicor. “Epicor’s Retail Store Point-of-Sale system has always been the workhorse of the retail enterprise, and now with new innovative features and functionality, it is an even more valuable tool to help retailers satisfy the most rigorous customer and store requirements.”
Enhancing the Customer Shopping Experience
New features in Store 6.3 claim to enable retailers to enhance the customer shopping experience — even across borders. These new features include integration with Enterprise Selling orders, user interface and messaging to support real-time visibility to inventory across a chain, and the ability to reserve items for pick up, or ship to customers. New Cross-country Returns functionality enables the purchase of an item in one country/currency and the return in a different currency. This includes the conversion of the value to local currency values and the application of original tax or local tax values. Complementary functionality is found in Epicor’s Foreign Exchange rate tool, which manages the exchange rate of the store or group of stores. Store 6.3 also provides retailers with the ability to email digital receipts quickly and easily directly from the POS terminal, so they may be viewed, stored and accessed from the customer’s device of choice.
New Features Foster Improved Transaction Security
Several new features address retailers’ needs surrounding transaction security. Store 6.3 integrates Epicor Secure Data Manager, for integrated payment-handling, authorization, and settlement in accordance with payment card security compliance. The solution also now offers Chip-and-PIN POS support, enabling retailers to handle credit and debit cards containing an embedded microchip which are then authenticated automatically using a personal identification number.
Epicor is also introducing Biometric POS Sign on via integration with DigitalPersona’s U.r.U fingerprint biometrics. With this solution, retailers can leverage fingerprint identification for user authentication, manager authorization of transactions, and staff time clock activities, reducing unauthorized overrides and “buddy punching” — reducing both transaction time and fraud.
A More Simple, Smarter Point of Sale
Additional new features support a smarter Point-of-Sale that streamlines transactions for store associates and customers alike. These include Predictive Tendering, which reduces the number key strokes required to handle cash transactions by predicting the most likely tender amounts. New Store Messaging functionality provides the ability to send messages from the head office to store personnel at individual stores or groups of stores.
The new release also provides several enhancements designed to streamline the management and execution of mission-critical POS activities. POS Printer Sharing functionality enables retailers to maximize printer use from multiple access points, supporting printing from mobile devices, standard registers, and/or email of transaction receipts, helping retailers cost justify store mobility investments by removing the need for dedicated mobile printers. Also included is support for Handheld Terminal Signature Capture, as well as adoption of POS for .NET, which simplifies and streamlines communication with POS peripheral devices, such as barcode scanners, magnetic card readers, and receipt printers.
Architected to Enable Retailers to Leverage Today’s Technology Advances
The new release works with technology advances for improved application scalability, flexibility and ease of implementation and support. Store 6.3 works with the .NET Framework for exchange of business logic and execution of services and Windows Communication Foundation (WCF), which streamlines communications among services or between physical deployment layers. Offering support for the Windows 2008 operating system, Microsoft SQL Server 2008 database and native support for 64-bit hardware, retailers can gain improved speed and system responsiveness. And with support for industry leading virtualization software packages — VMware Server 2.0.2, Microsoft Virtual PC 2007, and Virtual Box 3.2 — retailers can be assured their POS environment complements their virtualization strategies, so they can realize benefits such as maximized hardware resources, improved scalability and system redundancy, simplified support and lower costs.
Availability and Language Support
Epicor Retail Store 6.3 is expected to be generally available in November 2010, with support for English, French, German, Japanese, and Spanish, as well as Simplified Chinese, South Korean, and Taiwanese.
Today, many of the world’s leading retailers utilize Epicor Retail solutions and services to become more profitable, productive and competitive. Epicor’s solutions work with the .NET Framework to improve business operations and meet the evolving merchandise and service expectations of today’s cross-channel shoppers. Epicor delivers comprehensive retail management solutions to enterprises in all tiers — from regional chains to multichannel global brands. Retail customers include hundreds of marquee names, from Aéropostale, American Eagle Outfitters, and Ann Taylor to Zales and Zumiez. Epicor employs more than 800 employees in retail-focused operations.
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