By combining diverse technologies,
successful retailers are increasing
return on investment, reducing expenditures,
and creating ideal retail information systems.
A Retail Information System consists of
Point-of-Sale (POS) systems to record transactions,
In-Store Processors (ISPs) to manage
each store, the Enterprise Management System/
Data Warehouse which stores data and
manages the entire chain, and the networks
which connect these components.
Ideally, data travels to and from
each of three major components.
In an ideal retail information system,
data travels between the data warehouse,
the ISPs and the POS terminals
in real-time over networks.
The richness of the data (in terms of quantity,
detail, and useability), the speed of
the network, and the ability of the major
components to work in concert relate
directly to the quality and effectiveness of
the retail information system.
Successful retailers rely on
information-rich systems for effective
management and profitability.
More than ever, retailers rely on information
systems for effective management
A flexible, dependable, robust and
accessible information system is
essential to remaining competitive in
today's retail marketplace.
Price and service, the ability to identify trends,
and the flexibility to make changes quickly
are key factors to success in retailing.
However, mergers, acquisitions, growth, and
ever changing technologies
continue to erode the quality of
the information system.
Retailers are left with a myriad of
old and new components,
diverse systems, platforms,
and devices which are becoming
obsolete and/or do not work well together.
As a result, many retailers are faced with
a difficult choice: either forego newer
or enhanced technologies, or incur the high
cost of replacing old technologies.
The cost to replace all the diverse
platforms and devices to create
an ideal information system is not
economically practical for
most retailers. Since replacement does
not guarantee that new technology will integrate
successfully, retailers could once again be
faced with the same dilemma.
Making the right connections.
Fortunately, solutions are available
which enable retailers to create an ideal
system today by combining existing
components of varying ages, makes and models.
This can be achieved with minimum disruption,
and at greatly reduced cost as compared to
replacement. Upgrades to existing equipment can
occur all at once, a store at a time, or
station by station. Better yet, with the right
connections, retailers can choose the best
components and devices, at the best price,
from a variety of vendors, with the assurance of
total system compatibility today and in the future.
The features of the ideal system,
component by component.
The Point-Of-Sale (POS) Systems,
in their most basic configuration,
capture only essential sales data.
But they can do so much more.
As transactions are entered, the POS sends
data to the In-Store Processor for storage, additional
processing, and ultimately transmission to
the data warehouse at corporate headquarters.
The POS captures all mission-critical data i.e.
price, quantity, item data and SKU
This information supports the
management of the entire retail
enterprise.The In-Store-Processor (ISP),
to which all POS are networked,
is a strategic store management tool.
It acts as the in-store control point
and each store's information gateway.
The ISP monitors and collects all the
POS transactions as they occur,
and also processes this
data into useful reports.
In addition, the ISP can provide the
POS terminals and other
networked devices with access
to added functionality such as:
inventory, back-order information, price look-up,
e-mail, bridal registry and layaway,
time clock and attendance, personalized
customer information, and special preferred
While the ISP enables the Store Manager
to monitor, track and control all operations
for the individual store, it also processes
and uploads this information to
the Data Warehouse at Corporate.
Ideally, the data is uploaded in real-time,
which provides Corporate with
up-to-the-minute flash reports on a
store-by-store and chainwide basis.
The Enterprise Management System/ Data Warehouse,
typically located at corporate headquarters,
is the data repository and management
system for the retail chain.
The Data Warehouse collects,
stores and processes all data
from each of the stores in the chain.
Networked to each store's
ISP as well as all management
workstations, it is capable of providing
reports at all operational levels -
chainwide, regional, store-by-store,
or any selection of stores.
From Corporate, managers can review
store and chain performance, communicate
with store managers, track costs,
sales, profits and inventories on an
multi-item basis, distribute regional
or chainwide markdowns, and
effectively manage all
(or any selection of) stores
from a central control point.
Networks are the backbone of the ideal
retail information system, responsible for the speed
and reliability of the information
delivery, as well as the connections
of all the diverse components.
Typically, network traffic flows over leased lines,
satellite, frame relay and/or direct-connect
high-speed modem using
a variety of protocols
which may include TCP/IP and SNA/SDLC.
Better networks provide
built-in redundancies to avoid
down time and move transaction
Using new technologies,
multiple networks and multiple
types of networks can be effectively
combined.The right solution is to
combine existing components and increase
functionality.Most retail technologies currently in
use can be integrated and enhanced to
provide virtually any functionality via a
combination of hardware and software,
at much less cost than replacement.
Innovative has solutions for virtually all
components and devices.
Manage 1000 stores as easily as one.
Once all components are successfully
integrated into a single retail
information system, retailers can
manage 1000 stores as easily as one.
Store and Corporate managers, monitoring
real-time operational data such as sales,
inventories, and personnel, can adjust
pricing on the fly, offer last-minute markdowns, and
take advantage of last-minute opportunities.
Both Corporate and Store managers can
configure store parameters, load new
POS terminal software, change price look-up files,
and re-program POS terminals instantly.
And ISPs and POS terminals can be
re-programmed regionally and chain-wide
from workstations at headquarters.
Sale prices and special offers
(complete with automatic start and
end times and dates), can be sent to all or selected
POS terminal groups at once, without the
need to re-program each POS terminal individually.
The right connections are the key to successful retailing.
With up-to-the-minute information
continually being processed and
made available chain-wide in real-time,
retailers gain control, reduce training
and operations costs, and increase productivity.
Management can monitor, control and manage
stores more easily and more effectively.
And mergers, acquisitions, and expansion no
longer pose a threat to the effectiveness of
the retail information system.
With the right connections, retailers are
able to concentrate on the
business of retailing, and the
success of the chain.
Get the right connections now.
Since 1977, Innovative has been providing
cost-effective solutions to integrate
diverse retail components
of varying ages, makes and models.
Utilizing our own solutions in
combination with those of
third-party developers, Innovative's team of
retail connections specialists can help you
create the ideal system today, using most
of the technology and components you already
have in place.
Get FREE Retail Connections
information from the
Need help connecting retail hardware
and software or have questions?
Fax or e-mail to one of the following:
Connections Specialists Faxline: 1-954-432-0705
Connections Specialists e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit our web site at: www.innovele.com
Count on Innovative for retail solutions.
At Innovative, we put it all together.