Almost every retailer and restaurant owner knows how important it is to implement a front-end POS system. However, investing in a back office POS configuration is just as critical because such technology yields a wide variety of benefits, enabling operators to easily connect the dots from sales to administration. An additional computer equipped with a back office POS component, will help you achieve:
Easy labor scheduling. An additional or separate back office POS computer facilitates labor scheduling by affording you fast and ready access to the information you’ll need to make staffing decisions. Instead of engaging in guesswork or attempting to pull data from multiple sources, you can look at your payroll, determine where and what your highest expenses are, and assign staff to shifts based on historic traffic patterns rather than on hearsay. A back office POS system also lets you track overtime, revise labor schedules in a matter of a few seconds, and much more.
More efficient inventory management. In retail environments, a back office POS computer yields a bird’s-eye view of inventory at the SKU level. Suppose you want to know what quantity of a given item you have in stock. Without a back office POS, you might be forced to conduct a manual count, but with a back office POS on your desk, the answer to your question is immediately at your fingertips. You may even be able to use the back office POS as an automatic order re-generator when quantities of different SKUs reach a pre-defined low level.
If you operate any type of restaurant, inputting recipes into a back office POS permits you to keep tabs on your inventory down to the individual ingredient. This leads to a reduction in costs, as the system lets you see where individual waste is occurring and where you must expend your effort to stop such waste from occurring. In this instance, back office POS enables cost-cutting and enhanced inventory control by making it easy to pinpoint which ingredients are disappearing from your establishment because of theft.
Streamlined reporting. With a back office POS system, you can not only track such mission-critical data as sales statistics (down to the SKU or menu item level), inventory counts, labor use percentages, productivity figures, and the like; you can quickly generate reports in a number of formats, “slicing-and-dicing” data as you wish it to be organized. Any piece of data that resides in your front-of-the-house POS system can be accessed for reports created by your back office POS. If you have more than one store or restaurant, sales and other data from each location can be polled to a single repository once a day and turned into simple, easy-to-understand reports that will in turn help you maintain a tight handle on all aspects of your operation and its employees.
What’s more, your back office POS stores all of the above information in case you don’t want to print reports right away, but may want to do so later. The system will also contain an audit log to record any and all activity; you can view this whenever you would like or if circumstances dictate.
Admittedly, deploying a back office POS configuration and additional hardware necessitates a financial outlay. However, the gains to be achieved from such a system make the investment a wise and worthwhile one.