EPOS (Electronic Point Of Sale)

What are the benefits of EPOS?

A basic EPOS terminal – often a standard PC with inexpensive modifications and add-on hardware – linked to a back-office computer handles payments quickly, updates inventory lists and provides instant stock information.

Internal benefits

  • Use EPOS software to provide sales information – this can help you focus on more profitable lines, improve your demand forecasting and minimise inventory.

  • Add software modules to improve efficiency – adding Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) capability to your system means that every time a sales transaction is recorded, the credit or debit card transaction is also processed, reducing the time spent per transaction.

  • Link your EPOS terminal to other systems – by connecting EPOS to back-office systems such as your accounting package, you can increase control over your business and improve profitability. Many EPOS packages will export data to popular accounts packages such as Sage.

  • Link your EPOS system to your website – this provides online customers with rapid, up-to-date stock information. If stock runs out, EPOS can update the site to show that it is unavailable and warn potential customers that there will be a delay in delivery or offer an alternative.

The supply chain benefits

  • Integrate EPOS with your stock control system – this allows you to keep stock information up-to-date in real-time and streamline your supply chain processes. Your EPOS system can automatically determine which products are fast-moving and when they need replenishing.

  • Link your stock-enabled EPOS terminal to your suppliers’ web sites, extranets or back-office systems – this provides them with access to real-time stock information, allowing them to manage their own purchasing more efficiently.

  • Gather information on the movement of your stock – from the point of purchase, information on how stock is moving can be fed through to the warehouse and purchasing department, enabling you to move towards automated purchasing and restocking.

  • Provide suppliers with tracking sales and purchasing data – giving suppliers information on your customer purchasing habits and your marketing helps them factor your order demands into their plans.

  • Integrate data from EPOS with data from handheld scanners – this means you can track barcoded products on the journey from your suppliers to the warehouse to the store to the final point of sale. You can then identify where goods are being held up, compare the performance of different suppliers and their delivery times – and improve on the results.

  • Source-marking – partners in fast-moving supply chains should consider source-marking (i.e. article numbering and barcoding) according to international standards. This will allow them to track and analyse all their goods at any point in the supply chain process.

Electronic Point of Sale (EPOS) Business Advice: © Crown Copyright 2012

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