BEING FIRST WITH ELECTRONIC INVOICES BENEFITS TOWER POS SOFTWARE RETAILERS

We are thrilled to again be first with a major supplier to many of our customers, delivering to them excellent time savings, enabling them to compete more effectively. This is important as retailers that share a retail channel are competitors with each other – any advantage has to be exploited.

Today’s announcement is the result of hard work by plenty in our team.

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CREATING NEW TRAINING VIDEOS FOR OUR POS SOFTWARE CUSTOMERS

We have enhanced our video training facilities and resources in advance of the next steps we will take in developing additional video resources for our small business POS software customers and other parts of our business.

Using our purpose created in-house studio, professional camera and sound equipment and, Dean, our in-house producer / director we are all set for some exciting developments in the video space this year and beyond. This is a new chapter for us in creating additional video content.

We already has more than two hundred videos in our easily accessed online library for customer use. This is an extraordinary and differentiating resource for our customers.

The training videos are embedded in our knowledge base and other online platforms accessible to our customers.

It also shows prospective customers the Tower difference at a practical an easily accessible level.

Our video library is something we enjoy showing to sales prospects we it gives them something to compare with from any possible competitor.

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MEETING RETAIL SUPPLIERS IN HONG KONG

IMG_9430 (1)We were in Hong Kong last week at the International Gift and Homewares Fair, meeting suppliers to retailers we serve in Australia, working on ideas and back end technology to make doing business easier.

Meetings like those last week on behalf of our customers is another way Tower Systems differentiates the service it provides its customers. We work for them outside their businesses and with their suppliers in order to help then drive business efficiency.

We are grateful to the suppliers we have met with, for their time and their insights. Understanding the other side of the manufacturer / wholesalers – retailer relationship can help us bring efficiencies and other benefits to the retailers we serve. Indeed, what we learnt last week from some suppliers has been genuinely enlightening. There were several wow! moments that will benefit our customers and through that benefit us.

We are excited!

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SUNDAY RETAIL MANAGEMENT ADVICE: CELEBRATE THE BIRTHDAY OF YOUR RETAIL BUSINESS

Business birthdays are important – for you and for your customers, especially in a locally owned small retail business.

Embrace the opportunity of your business birthday for a celebration. But be sure to not make it all about making more money. Take time to embrace the achievement and love it.

Here are practical tips for celebrating the birthday of your business:

  1. Setup a photo board and invite customer engagement. Let’s say your business is six years old: ask customers to bring a photo showing them at six years of age. Their stories become part of your story.
  2. Setup a noticeboard. Let’s say your business is twenty years old. Headline the board with: To celebrate our twenty years in business, join us and list twenty things you love about this town.
  3. Recognise local heroes. Host an after drinks night in your shop and take a moment to acknowledge and thank local heroes. The number you acknowledge should be the number of years you have been in business.
  4. Thank previous owners. Create a history board of previous owners. Where they are now. Their stories. Show the rich long history of your business from before you owned it.
  5. Hand out a flyer listing X hidden gems of your region (where X is the number of hears you have been in business). The flyer is your birthday gift to your customers.
  6. Have cake. Everyone loves cake. If for no other reason than to get to eat cake have a birthday cake. Make it special. Have a big cake or lots of cup cakes. Set and date and time for the celebration.
  7. Party favor bags. Give every customer shopping on your birthday a bag of treats and favors you have chosen to celebrate your big day.
  8. The Happy Birthday discount. Offer a big discount to any customer who comes in on the day (or through the week if you wish) and sings, at full voice, Happy Birthday.
  9. Say thank you. In your front window, create a stunning and personal display saying thank you to the town. Do it visually, creatively and with a full heart.
  10. Half price birthdays. On the day itself, offer birthday cards at half price. While you are giving away margin and will bring forward what might otherwise have been full margin sales, you could get people buying cards from you who have not done so in a while.
  11. Be thankful. On Facebook leading up to your birthday share what you are thankful for from and through your business. Be sure to write with a voice of gratefulness and celebration.
  12. Dress the shop for a party. For at least the week of the birthday dress the shop as a themed party, maybe a kids party. Get everyone involved. Have fun and bring your customers in on the fun.
  13. Maybe a birthday party celebration sale. One night, after the shop has closed, put on some wine, cheese and nibbles inviting people to join you for some party games, prizes and deals.

A key aspect of these ideas is to remind people that your business is stable, can be trusted, is locally connected and knows how to have fun.

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APPRECIATING THE POS SOFTWARE HELP DESK APPRECIATION

Thank you for taking my call on a Saturday. I know it was not urgent but you have relieved my stress.

This email from a Tower systems POS software customer this morning is a thrill. They were stressed about information in a report and wanted to understand the context. We provided this and put their mind at rest. Indeed, the discussion has helped them see a new opportunity for their business.

We love feedback like this.

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REINVENTING THE POS SOFTWARE EXPERIENCE FOR SMALL BUSINESS RETAILERS

Change is the order of the day for retail as it has been since the first shops opened. What is different in 2016 is that the pace of change has picked up. Indeed, the pace of change today is greater than at any time in the past. Technology is playing a key role in that: online and offline technology is facilitating, pushing and even forcing change.

Staying up to date is a challenge, especially in small and independent retailer businesses where having the time and resources to stay open can be difficult.

Tower Systems tries to insulate its customers from some of the challenges of change by leveraging changes in the software without needing to change hardware infrastructure.

In software updates we bring to the businesses of our customers tools and resources they can use to be more competitive. Tools and facilities through which they can enhance the relevance of their businesses in a changing retail landscape.

We think and work strategically on such technical changes, always thinking about what we can do to help our customers drive their relevance for we know if you customers feel more relevant and are more successful as a result of our software then a need of our business plan is satisfied.

What we do is more than about the software though. Enhancing our POS software is only part of what we do. The even more important aspect of helping our small business retailers compete is how we communicate with them about the enhancements. Our live training workshops, regional user meetings, training videos, advice sheets, personal training and other touch points help our customers learn about and embrace opportunities for change in their retail businesses through what we deliver in our POS software.

In our latest work we have helped retailers redefine the over the counter sales experience, leveraging important touch points, driving value from shopper engagement. For retailers, changes like these are money in the bank.

Our work directly linking with Magento, Shopify, Xero and other respected and widely used platforms is an example of us delivering on our commitment to help our small business retail community to embrace change and leverage change for their commercial success.

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POS SOFTWARE REPORTS THAT WILL CHANGE YOUR BUSINESS

We love seeing this on our free POS software training booking page: a practical business management session for retailers FULLY BOOKED. We love it because this will be another group of retailers we help fall in love with practical outcomes they can leverage from their Tower Systems software.

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Each of our weekly training sessions has 15 participants – to provide everyone with time necessary for questions and discussion.

The continued strong bookings for all our free raining sessions are appreciated by all of us at Tower Systems. We are grateful for the support.

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BEST PRACTICE SOFTWARE FOR INDEPENDENT PET AND PRODUCE STORES

Tower Systems is proud to offer specialist software for independent pet and produce stores, software tailored to the needs of pet stores and software tailored to the needs of produce stores, software for independent retailers and not mass or chains.

Tower Systems is an Australian software company that develops, sells and supports software for selected specialty marketplaces including pet and produce businesses.

We only serve independent retail businesses.

Our mission is to help retailers run more successful businesses. Our definition of success is a business that is making money, where the owners and employees enjoy what they do and where suppliers enjoy transacting.

Good software can play an important role in nurturing business success as it sits at the heart of the business: transacting sales, managing stock, tracking customer activity and shining a light on business opportunities.

At a store level, here are some of the benefits pet and produce retailers can expect from using our pet shop software and our produce store software:

  1. Fast, accurate selling.
  2. Easy selling by weight with professional scale integration.
  3. Easy management of customer accounts.
  4. Identifying of shopper and employee theft.
  5. Tracking of stock movement.
  6. Handling of customer loyalty – points and discounts.
  7. Easy reordering based on sales.
  8. Easy handling of multiple price levels for items.
  9. Easy handling of multiple sale pack sizes (or volumes) per product.
  10. Seamless transfer of sales and invoice data to Xero or MYOB.
  11. Easy performance reporting comparing trading periods, supplier performance and other key business performance metrics.
  12. Security over business data.
  13. Security over business settings blocking changes that could compromise the business.
  14. Peace of mind thanks to consistent processes established through the software for managing stock, customers and other aspects of the business.

We have excellent reference sites that can speak to our achievements for their businesses and our living up to the sales pitch of providing easy to use professional software built for purpose in these two specialist retail channels.

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PRACTICAL RETAIL MANAGEMENT ADVICE BEYOND TRADITIONAL POS SOFTWARE SUPPORT

Tower Systems offers help, advice and assistance beyond traditional POS software support and has done for many years.

Our small business retail management advice is fresh and developed from our own hands-on retail experiences and from suggestions from our helpful customers. Each article of advice is jargon-free and accompanied by how-to steps and practice advice any retailer in any situation can read and use.

Here are topics we have published advice for our customers on in recent months.

  1. How to confront feeling overwhelmed in your retail business.
  2. Gift certificates – for selling when you don’t have the gift a customer wants.
  3. How to stop price comparisons with major retailers in your retail business.
  4. How to cut shopper theft in your retail business.
  5. How to protect your business from a ransomware attack.
  6. Don’t be bound by what is usual for your type of retail business.
  7. Make every day your pay day.
  8. Compete by not competing.
  9. Leveraging what sells with what in your retail business.
  10. What manual processes can you eliminate in your business?
  11. 5 Rules Every Small Business Retailer Needs For The Sales Counter.
  12. 5 Ways small business retailers can market for free.
  13. How to cut mistakes in your retail business.
  14. How to be more local in your retail business.
  15. How to find optimism in your retail business.
  16. How to check prices using your Tower software.
  17. How to develop your unique selling proposition and why you need one.
  18. Competing against your most important competitor.
  19. How and when to quit stock in your retail business.
  20. How to transact if your computer system is down.
  21. How to cut employee theft in your retail business.
  22. 30 free marketing ideas for small business retailers this Christmas.

This is a small sample of the advice from us and available to our POS software customers through our searchable and accessible from anywhere Knowledge Base.

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BEST PRACTICE TOY SHOP SOFTWARE HELPS AUSTRALIAN TOY RETAILERS

The Tower Systems specialty Toy Shop Software is best-practice software for Australian toy shops. Using the software you can easily handle:

  1. Customer special orders.
  2. Catalogues
  3. Gift Cards.
  4. Hampers
  5. LayBys
  6. Presales of hot licence items – get revenue before a product is released.
  7. Shopper loyalty – points.
  8. Shopper loyalty – $$$ off the next purchase based on rules you set.
  9. Importing electronic invoices and stock files from suppliers.
  10. Reordering based on accurate sales data – reducing the cost of dead stock.
  11. BOGO: handling Buy One get One Free offers.
  12. MultiBuy – like a coffee card, free product over time.
  13. Xero accounting interface – cut your bookkeeping time and costs.
  14. Magento and Shopify interfaces – connect to your website easily.
  15. EFTPOS integration – save on a phone line and cut mistakes.
  16. Easy and accurate stock taking.
  17. Professional receipts with your logo.
  18. Serial number tracking.
  19. Age checking for items with a minimum age requirement.
  20. Upsell prompts for staff.

There are many ways toy shop retailers can use this toy shop software to help you personalise the shopping experience with you, ways that make comparing your business to mass market toy retailers difficult.

We help Toy retailers shine a light on their point of difference.

For example, you can have product use and care information included automatically on receipts. This can be information you have written that sets your business apart from others.

You can use smart reports in the software to quickly gain a view of business performance:

  1. By supplier.
  2. By season.
  3. By product licence such as Star Wars, Batman etc.
  4. Comparing trading periods.
  5. By employee performance.
  6. By customer value.
  7. By day of week.

We believe in the value of accurate business data for small and independent retailers. Good data easily accessed can guide better quality business decisions – we see this every day in our extensive work with small business retailers across multiple channels.

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MORE FREE POS SOFTWARE TRAINING FOR SMALL BUSINESS RETAILERS

Here is the latest round of free POS software training Tower Systems is proud to offer its customers.

Each one of these sessions is free to access, live and genuinely interactive.

We publish the list here as proof of us living up to our word of offering free on-going training.

Our customers can book any time online through our live training portal – another self-serve facility offered by Tower Systems to its customers.

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For a full list of free live POS software training, check out our website. From there you can book, see the topics, see the detail of what will be covered and add the event to your online calendar. Smart software training bookings, another Tower AdvantageTM.

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SUNDAY SMALL BUSINESS MANAGEMENT ADVICE: BE MEMORABLE

Memorable customer service is the most important point of difference a retail business can have, especially a business which does not make what it sells and therefore could have its products being sold by any other business apple to reach the same pool of shoppers.

We call it memorable customer service because it truly has to be that … memorable. So memorable that it is praised by your customers to others.

Good customer service should be the norm, the lowest hurdle any retail business can jump. Memorable customer service, the level of customer service that makes a shopper talk about the experience to their friends, must be the goal and it is the word of mouth from these customers that is a factor in driving traffic growth.

Memorable customer service is just as vital to Point of Sale software companies as it is for retail businesses. Since we own retail businesses as well as our POS software company we see it, live it and reach for it from both sides.

This is why we work hard to encode the ability to focus on customer service in our Point of Sale software.  That’s right, retailers using our software have touch points they can leverage using software which help deliver the kind of memorable customer service we are talking about here.

Memorable customer service in retail, just as in a software company, is experiences which exceed expectations, it delivers benefits outside of what you expect even from a good business.  In our IT company we compete with big IT companies and small, like us, IT companies. While we want our software to be the point of difference customers notice and talk about positively, it is our customer service which is loved and mentioned to colleagues more.  Realising this was an epiphany for us.

We focus on building stronger, better and more valuable software. But we also surround this, completely, with customer service experiences which are the very best of the best. This gives us, and our customers, the best of both worlds. And we love it ourselves.

Given that most retailers do not have products unique to their businesses, delivering memorable customer service is critical to the business plan.  Small and independent retailers can do this more easily and effectively than big retailers. From the genuine smile to shoppers to product knowledge to that extra information which helps a shopper get more out of the product purchased than they would have had the purchased the product elsewhere. This added value is the key and it can be delivered in almost any situation and with any product from a stapler through to a high-end road bike.

So, beyond our software and as part of our customer service focus, we seek out opportunities to help our customers deliver memorable customer service.  Indeed, this was one topic we covered in the recent face-to-face user meetings we ran in capital cities and major regional centres around Australia.

As a Point of Sale software company, our mission is to deliver constantly improving retail management software backed with memorable customer service and going beyond this with business insights and assistance which helps our retailers themselves deliver exceptional and memorable experiences to their customers.

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WHAT MAKES THE TOWER SYSTEMS POS SOFTWARE MAGENTO LINK A BEST PRACTICE SOLUTION FOR RETAILERS

Not all POS Software Magento links are made equal. Some POS software Magento links are slow, out of date, not direct and / or cumbersome. Some make doing business online and in a bricks and mortar store from the same stock data set cumbersome,

Thanks to relationships developed in the US with the Magento team over years, Tower Systems offers a best-practice solution, one powerful, easy to use and ideal for independent retail businesses.

Linking directly with the Tower POS software it is a breeze to use – as the many e-commerce sites already using it can attest.

A weakness we have seen in some other products is their use of an old version of Magento. By using the latest release, we are able to deliver something far more useful and valuable to small business retailers. Indeed, we can show the difference live through sites we have developed even for our business retail and e-commerce businesses.

This use ourselves of our own software enables us to speak with experience and authority on these things. We are not selling you something thinking how it should work. No, we are selling something we use ourselves for our own retail business, something that meets our own exacting needs, something of which we are most proud.

Using our Magento link it is easy to share data, images and other vital content between your shop and your online store without extra time or technology overhead. The Tower Systems approach is a breeze to implement and manage.

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HERE AT TOWER SYSTEMS OUR MISSION IS TO HELP SMALL BUSINESS RETAILERS

We were asked recently to explain our mission in a way small business retailers not familiar with technology will understand.

Tower Systems is an Australian POS software company that develops, sells and supports software for selected specialty marketplaces.

We only serve independent retail businesses.

Our mission is to help retailers run more successful businesses. Our definition of success is a business that is making money, where the owners and employees enjoy what they do and where suppliers enjoy transacting.

Good software can play an important role in nurturing business success as it sits at the heart of the business: transacting sales, managing stock, tracking customer activity and shining a light on business opportunities.

What makes us different is how we engage. We go beyond what is traditional software company.

  • We welcome working with your suppliers to create data links that save you and them time, data links that improve data accuracy, data links that feed more accurate business reports.
  • We provide business insights based on data cultivated through the software – to business owners who ask. This is a free service.
  • Our help desk provides context for advice. Rather than the turn it off and turn it on advice, our help desk team members explain the why, why from a business perspective the advice they are providing matters.
  • Our software updates contain enhancements suggested and voted on by customers. You can have a direct say in the evolution of the software.
  • Our communication is in plain English. While we are a company of IT geeks, when talking with customers we keep it simple. We know technology scares people. We don’t want it to scare our customers.
  • We are accessible. You get to talk with real people all the time, including our leadership team.

This is what we stand for.

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WE LOVE POS SOFTWARE SUCCESS STORIES

IMG_7492We love hearing POS software stories, stories from our small business retailer customers on how they are using our Point of Sale software to help their businesses in the service of their customers.

We heard one such success story from the folks at Tourist House recently, at one of our user meetings, on their use of our proprietary discount voucher loyalty software facilities to help their customers save on purchases tourist items from them.

Using the software in four retail locations in four cities, the POS software sits at the heart of the operation. The discount voucher facilities have proved to be terrific in helping with employee and customer engagement.

The stories of engagement have helped us understand from a real world perspective how our software can be used in a  range of situations to drive better business outcomes. Every feedback story adds to our knowledge and the narrative of Tower Systems.

We are grateful for customer engagement like this. It puts wind in our sales, a spring in our step.

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EASY ACCESS TO FREE POS SOFTWARE TRAINING

Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 8.58.27 amTower Systems emailed its POS software customers today with news of additional free training opportunities. In addition to the weekly free live and interactive training workshops, the company announced additional sessions because some upcoming sessions are already full.

We make sign up easy with a direct link from the email. In fact, sign up is as easy as using the software itself and accessing our help desk. We embrace every opportunity possible to show engaging with good technology can be easy.

We are grateful to our customers for their support and love being able to serve them with this bonus training now on offer.

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POS SOFTWARE SCALE INTEGRATION HELPS SMALL RETAILERS COMPETE

IMG_7467The seamless scale integration facilities in the Tower Systems POS software make selling easy in a range of specialty retailers including pet stores, garden centres, jewellers, whole foods stores and confectionery stores. Helping retailers sell by weight helps them drive fast and accurate selling. It can also offer retailers greater flexibility in pricing structure. All of which helps small and independent retailers to compete more successfully and effectively.

The terrific LollyBomb store in the heart of Adelaide is a good example of a smart retailer leveraging the scale facilities in the software to help run a more successful business.

Selling by weight is easy thanks to the facilities in the software that were developed by Tower Systems in close consultation with retailers.

This is another niche service handled by the Tower software, making it a genuinely beneficial tool for niche and special interest small business retailers.

Integrations are important to small business retailers. They can often set POS software companies apart in that not all integrations are approved. take Xero, for example – they do not approve all POS software requests for integration. They have a structured process to follow. This is why being approved is a badge of honour and an important differentiator.

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THE JB HI FI 3 FOR $10 IS EASY WITH OUR POS SOFTWARE

IMG_8947Retailers using the Tower Systems POS software can easily handle package or bundled offers, like the JB Hi Fi 3 for $10 offer they are running for greeting cards.

Using our smart small business POS software, retailers can run bundled deals like we see in JB Hi Fi with ease. Small and independent retailers can match the retail giant simply and easily. This is important as offers like this make price comparisons difficult.

In addition to bundled offers like this, the Tower software also handled multi buys where shoppers can purchase over time, reaching an award point where they get free product.

These facilities are in addition to myriad other discounting options including catalogues, loyalty facilities, discount vouchers and more.

All of these tools help small business retailers to be competitive in their offers, competitive against other local businesses, competitive against online and competitive against big businesses, like JB Hi Fi.

The beauty of offers like the JB Hi Fi offer is shoppers are drawn to the deal of Three cards for $10 and often times purchase one card at a higher margin for the retailer. Our software handles this, kicking in the Three for $10 pricing offer only when the shopper purchases the three cards. This counter management based on volume is easy and automatic – delivering good outcomes for the retailers and ensuing maximum margin.

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SUNDAY SMALL BUSINESS MANAGEMENT ADVICE: CHOOSE MUSIC THOUGHTFULLY

Is the music you play in your retail store right for the retail store? While major chains broadcast in-store radio with ads for what they sell, you can create an oasis in your business that suits your customers and the retail space you create for them.

Rather than turning on commercial radio or playing CDs, our suggestion is to sign up for a premium service like Pandora, ideally the ad-free version. Pandora [provides an excellent selection of stations, allowing you to set the mood based on the season or other aspects of what is going on in your business at the time.

Using a service like Pandora brings flexibility to the business, it ensures change and helps provide an environment that is more enjoyable and flexible.

No music is not good. Commercial radio may be okay in some situations but the ads promote outside your business. CDs need changing and you need a vast library to have a different sound. Pandora, or a similar service, is ideal for i-store small business retail use. This is what we see in plenty of retail businesses now.

There is a free version of Pandora, and other services, that you can try before you spend any money on ad-free facilities.

The sound of your business can help drive excellent sales for little or no cost.

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POS SOFTWARE KNOWLEDGE BASE MAKES ACCESSING HELP EASY

The ever-evolving knowledge based helping users of the Tower Systems POS software is easily accessible, using natural English searches.

While the Tower Systems team enhanced knowledge base content, users themselves can provide feedback within knowledge base articles, adding value to the information seeking experience. It is accessible 24/7. It is also referred to in help desk calls as part of the training process and to provide customers with step by step advice on how to do something – if that is appropriate to a specific call.

Knowledge base resources include videos as well as text based articles. Indeed, there are more than 100 knowledge base accessible videos.

The knowledge base approach by Tower Systems is a good example of the open and interactive approach taken by the company to serving its small business retailer customers.

Here is one example one knowledge base article of several on the end of shift process accessible through the Tower Systems POS software knowledge base.

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The Tower Systems knowledge base can be accessed from any internet connected device including desktop computers, tablets and smartphones. Yes, it is iPhone ready.

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EXTRA POS SOFTWARE TRAINING SESSIONS DUE TO DEMAND

Tower Systems is thrilled to announce the addition of the following training sessions due to demand for the original sessions:

  1. Meeting Name: How to handle non EDI invoices to keep stock accurate. Date: Thursday 12th of May Time: 2pm Description: See how easy it is to process invoice’s manually for suppliers that do not send electronic invoices to help keep your stock figures accurate.
  2. Meeting Name: Getting Ready for EOFY Date: Tuesday 17th of May Time: 2pm Description: Get ready for End of Financial Year now. What you need to do and the reports you need to run.
  3. Meeting Name: Retailer software settings you will be shocked you have access to. Date: Thursday 19th of May Time: 2pm Description: Help desk expert Colin Harris will show you settings you most likely don’t know exist that can help your enjoyment of the software
  4. Meeting Name: Stocktaking for EOFY Date: Thursday 26th of May Time: 2pm Description: Doing a stocktake in retailer and what option works best for you.

We are grateful to our customers for embracing our free training program. We know those attending training make better users of the software and better retailers.

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LOCALLY DEVELOPED POS SOFTWARE FOR AUSTRALIAN LOCAL RETAIL BUSINESSES

As overseas online businesses compete with local retailers for sales of almost anything, so too do overseas based POS software companies compete with Australian software companies.

Here at Tower Systems, we understand local. We understand our local retail business customers. we understand their shoppers. We understand what being local is all about and why it matters to our customers and the communities in which they serve.

This is what being local is really about, it is about being knowledgable of and engaged with your local community.

Through our POS software and through our customer service we live and breathe the local message. Our actions speak for us through locally focussed software changes and how we serve and connect with our customers.

here is a short video explaining our local pitch. This video serves multiple purposes: it speaks to our in-house video production facilities, it has our owner speaking up for us and what we stand for, it shows our commitment to plain speaking anyone can understand and it speaks to our professionalism that you can trust.

This is the Tower Advantage, our Tower Advantage, offered to you.

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