Tower Blog

A blog about smart POS software for independent small businesses.

Month: May 2005 (page 1 of 2)

IBM helps retailers understand what customers want

IBM recently commissioned a telephone survey of 1,000 American adults age 18 and older. The aim of the survey was to determine shopper attitudes on a range of topics including, not unexpectedly, technology. The report, The customer-centric store, makes for fascinating reading:

What must retailers do to differentiate themselves in the marketplace and regain their focus on the customer? How can retailers create a more pleasurable and highly satisfying shopping experience that will meet the needs and demands of today’s customers? The answer lies in delivering a customer-centric store experience that is supported by customer-centricity embedded throughout the retailer’s organization.

Over the report’s 24 pages, the reader is encouraged to focus on the customer experience. Of course, underscoring this call is the pitch for solutions IBM offers to help. That’s reasonable given their funding of the report. The IBM pitch aside, this report is valuable for independent retailers. It provides an excellent call to action in the pursuit of exceptional customer service. It rightly identifies the customer experience as the key point of difference in this more homogenised and corporate marketplace.

The report talks of four strategic imperatives if a business is to achieve customer centricity and thereby enjoy the commercial rewards which flow from such achievement:

1. Build an organization that defines a shopping experience that evolves with
changing customer expectations

2. Provide a truly convenient shopping experience

3. Develop an integrated view of the customer

4. Deliver a flexible product/service offering

Common sense. But when read in the context of the IBM funded research and with the added insight of the respected authors, this report provides an excellent roadmap for any independent retailer concerned about competition, marketplace change and their future. It’s written in an accessable style.

The key take away for me is that in retail it is about the customer and that everything you do within the business should uphold that view.

Well done IBM. (Note: I’m not a traditional ‘big blue fan’ but I say credit where credit is due.)


Society and independent retailers

I was in the city (Melbourne) Friday night and had a space five minutes so I went to a Starbucks for a coffee. (I’d have gone elsewhere but time was short and Starbucks was the closest to the venue I was attending.) Once inside the store, I could have been anywhere. There was nothing about the experience which was local or Australian. What did I expect?

Brands like Starbucks, McDonalds, KFC and the like exist to provide a common experience across the globe. That’s their appeal to many consumers and landlords. Nothing wrong with that. It’s business. I’d suggest that in a societal sense, though, they add nothing. My Starbucks experience elicited mediocre coffee delivered with barely average service and all for a price higher than the coffee shops where I live and where I work. In those places I get a local connect: conversation, personal service, appreciation and unpredictability – who wants everything to be the same every time?

It is one thing to lament the risk to our culture as a result of growth by groups like Starbucks and another entirely to act on this risk. Independent retailers and other small businesses need to be smarter in supporting each other. We need to be disciplined in this. Otherwise we risk less of us and more Starbucks and who can stomach such mediocre coffee?


Sad story for independent retailers

It’s sad to read the story, Supermarket sale set to spark chain reaction, in The Age today about the fall out of the carve up of the Foodland group.

Yeah the big boys need to get bigger (it’s a size thing) until they are burdened with poor synergy between parts of the business and until their shareholder base is such that they become a target for a predator who can make more money by selling off bits.

When a small independent retailer who closes, consumers lose local service, local people lose jobs and the community lose choice. Big retailers are not known for offering the same variety to consumers independents offer.

Most important, though, is that big businesses do little to enhance the community compared to small business. Independent retailers support our culture, without them Australia becomes just another state.

Newspapers like The Age have to report these events and this is a good report. I’d like to see them do a social analysis piece, projecting life in Australia with national stores only. I am sure we have experts who could discuss the implications for Australia to lose the businesses, chemists, newsagents, butchers, bakers – those independent retailers across our land who every time they serve someone share a bit of what it is to be Australian.


The difference between big business and small business

I flew yesterday from Bundaberg to Brisbane and then on to Melbourne. It was the end of a two day six flight trip. I had a briefcase and an overnight bag. So, this is flight five of the journey, traveling Qantas all the way.

At Bundaberg airport the Qantas employee wanted to weigh by two bags. He then asked me to check one as the combined weight was over 4kg. I explained that I have made flights in the previous 24 hours on exactly the same plane as this flight (a Dash-8) but he said rules are rules. I asked why and he said it would be unfair to others on the plane if I clogged up the overhead locker. I showed him that one bag would go under the seat and to over overhead. He said rules are rules. I explained that I had to connect in Brisbane and that his decision wold mean I have to go outside security to baggage, wait for my slim overnight bag and then back in and onto my connecting flight. You guessed it rules are rules. He seemed to take some delight in saying this. I enquired as to whether the plane was full and he advised not – it was half full. He would not change his mind.

The lady climbing aboard before me had an overnight bag, a large handbag, a plastic shopping bag and a jacket across her arm. Maybe I should travel in drag and see if that helps.

While waiting for my bags in Brisbane, hoping that I my bag was not being used as a means of carrying contraband from Bundaberg to Brisbane, I wondered how I would run the business. Sure I would have rules but I would also empower front line employees to make operational decisions which are sensitive to customer needs and conditions on the day. I would expect my employees would have allowed me to take the bag on. There was room, it was just over the limit, it took up LESS space than some people with one bag on the same flight.

But for Qantas being a big (read inflexible) business they cannot handle such a situation. This bloke had the opportunity to exert himself and he enjoyed it.

Nah, give me small business service and flexibility any day.

Post script: On the Brisbane – Melbourne flight I composed (in my head) a letter to Qantas customer service. I deleted it when I recalled how poor their response was last time I complained to them about poor service.


Software licence: perpetual or annual

One of our point of sale software competitors has released an offer whereby their users purchase a one year licence for their software. The software is apparently coded to lock if the licence is not renewed.

While it’s up to the company to put whatever offer they feel serves the marketplace, it’s critical that the marketplace is fully informed as to the difference between an annual renewable licence and a perpetual licence without annual fee strings.

It concerns me because of the data which builds up in these Point of Sale systems and that this business specific data may be locked away at the expiry of the licence. Further, there does not seem to be an up-front commitment on what the annual licence fee will be. Once you;re relying on this system and it has your data you’ll probably be prepared to pay more than you should.

We’re not talking about this development in our sales pitch but we feel we will need to. Yesterday we had a situation where our package deal price was $2,000 more expensive that this competitor. The only difference was that our system is sold with a perpetual licence and the competitor system has a one year licence. We found ourselves having to explain the difference to first time computer users who wanted to be running their business and not listening to the explanation. If they go with the competitor, the time they will want this information is in a year.

Software, service and support issues aside, this new pricing model has the potential to confuse the small business marketplace and leave messy situations for someone else to clean up.

We’re not heading down this path and if we ever did it would be with very clear paperwork so that the confusion we found yesterday could not arise.


Fringe dwellers

In an article at, Tim Robbins is showing his independent streak, is a gem of a quote from Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos.

“Consolidation of media outlets results in more homogenized offerings,” Sarandos said. “And the square footage and limited shelf space of mainline retailers is so valuable that they’re managed closely — stocked with mass-appeal product that squeezes out films like Tim’s. We’re not espousing a political position but providing a platform.”

Bigger means less choice and popularity wins and with this society loses for it’s at the fringe that we are pushed, pulled, shoved and enticed to new views on all manner of things.

If we’re only fed a diet of popular then how boring would be world become?

Independent retailers and small business are vital to our development as a race. They provide more shelf space to those who will enhance humanity. The risks independent retailers take are where a better future lies.

The key is for independent retailers to develop business models which are economically sustainable while at the same time allowing them to be independent.



Been talking with several clients over the weekend about their entries for our 2005 FAST 3 AWARD – where we reward the 3 fastest growing businesses using our software.

The process of getting the data for contest entry continues to shake information out of the trees and onto the screens of our client base. The latest callers have been asking questions about possible theft; why they are not growing; and, in one case, how to better manage the growth they’re achieving.

This is great stuff. It’s building the type of relationships we crave to have with our client base – working on their businesses using the facilities in our software. In two instances so far the interaction has led to decisions to enhance our software further so it better serves their needs.

Another key learning has been the realisation by some of our clients that they’re competing with themselves. This is a breakthrough. Getting small business people to compare trading periods by department, category and item and seeking understanding from what the reports comparing the trading periods show. Of course we compete with ourselves. This is essential in any business where costs increase faster than our retail price. Sales growth is crucial to profitabilility.

Many new entries this past week. We’re hoping to double the entries this week again.

Details on the contest can be found here.


Underhand sales tactics

We’re looking at new corporate phone systems at present and the sales guy from one company has just sent us through the bug list for the competitor product we are considering. The bug list is an internal document from his competitor. This hot shot sales guy sent the list to us in order that we would give more weight to his product. It’s had the opposite effect. If only he had focussed on the features and benefits of his products and left his competitors alone.


Our Fast 3 contest uncoverers struggling retailers

It’s always a challenge taking a call from a small business owner who reports their business is going backward.

That happened today. Three times.

In each case they were printing the report necessary to compare Jan-Apr 2004 with 2005 so they could enter our Fast 3 Awards. The results in these three cases was bad news rather than good.

That the business owners were surprised was THE surprise. I expected people would be printing even this basic business comparison report every week or two. I do. I want to see how I’m traveling and therefore quickly address less than acceptable growth.

In these cases the response was one of shock. It must be wrong. Okay if it’s not wrong what can I do? Help!

One of the reasons we created the awards is to get our small business retailers engaging with their software on a deeper level and tracking the performance of their businesses. It’s working. These calls and the entries received are proof of that. Great proof. We’re having good business conversations and getting involved where we are allowed to help address challenging situations. Our own team members are learning from the interaction as well.

We’re taking this seriously and plan to build some additional business training for our software users based on the learnings from the awards.


Starbucks and the folly of one size fits all

If you don’t know by now I’m over the one size fits all mentality of so many businesses. I like that I can walk down to local shops which do not have a recognisable national or international logo above their door and choose some products or access some services which are unique to that business. I like that one day service is not as good as the other. Such is life. I like that it’s local. It is unnatural to get the same experience every time or have access to the same product range in every store of the same product category.

Starbucks is in my sights at present because they are continuing their push in Australia when we don’t need them here. We are exceptionally well served with coffee houses, especially in Melbourne. We don’t need this US company coming in with mediocre over priced product.

I was comforted, therefore, in reading this story at MSNBC from 2004 about Java Junction a local drive through coffee shop successfully competing in the very crowded Washington State coffee marketplace.


Growth for independent retailers

Our recently launched TOWER SYSTEMS 2005 FAST 3 AWARD is attracting some excellent entries. Not that entry is all that difficult. The contest is about comparing trading periods for selected categories. comparing January 1, 2004 through April 30, 2004 with the same period in 2005.

Early results are showing Tower Systems users achieving good growth. It’s our hope that we can leverage valuable knowledge from the best performers to share with the broader independent retailer community. Small business helping small business.

Too often we see business awards requiring entrants to complete forms and reports open to subjecting analysis. In our awards we want the business performance to speak for itself since that matters above all else.


The independent retailer manifesto

To counter the one size fits all sanitised mentality of Starbucks, Blockbuster, Borders and all those other international stores, independent retailers ought to agree on a manifesto along the lines of:

  • We will carry the products you tell us your want us to carry.
  • We will not act as your censor.
  • We will, wherever possible, source products locally.
  • We will employ local people.
  • We will support the local community.
  • We will make our business decisions locally.
  • We do not believe in one size fits all.
  • We will engage in every way possible to nurture the local community around us.

    Independent retailers carry the flag of community, they are the crucial to the survial of towns and their cultures.

  • Starbucks coffee shop as censor

    Starbucks in the US has (according to Newsweek) decided not to carry the latest Bruce Springsteen CD RENO because of what they apparently consider to be raunchy lyrics.

    Yeah, I’m happy having a global coffee company decide what music I should have access to.



    Our Tower Systems 2005 Fast 3 Award is drawing plenty of interest from our small business user community. Many are reading about the contest on our website and then call for help to extract the necessary four measurements so they may enter. This is the kind of engagement we were hoping for from the competition – getting people with computer systems using them in a way they had not in the past and actually using the technology to measure business performance rather than just processing sales day in and day out.

    I reckon that too many technology companies create technology for the sake of it rather than for the business outcomes the users generate with the technology. So this contest is about extending our engagement with our user community for the benefit of their business and, of course, a flow on benefit for us. Tower users getting more from their investment will tell others. But there is no expectation of such word of mouth if we do not successfully engage.

    So, we’re receiving calls from people and in a few seconds we advise how then can product the figures necessary to enter the contest. They I’ve had a couple of calls from people saying that their business has not grown over the year. This leads to a business discussion and that’s when very helpful engagement begins. One person suggested the results from their sales comparison report were wrong. So we looked at it through other reports and the results were verified.

    You’d think that business people would receive sufficiently regular financial reports about their business to track such things. No. Many small business people make an annual pilgrimage to their accountant and that’s when they find out how they are traveling. This contest aims to achieve better engagement between business owner and their business and that has to be good.


    Woolworths and pharmacies and community benefit

    Good to see The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia get some press this week basking the giant Woolworths and their push to get pharmacy only prescription sales into their supermarkets. Their media release makes some excellent points:

    Protecting public health is more important than Woolworths’ profits and should be the primary consideration in any government decision over whether to allow pharmacies in supermarkets, Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Vice-President Frank Payne said today.

    “Until now Woolworths’ sole argument for entering the pharmacy industry has been based on financial considerations, with managing director Roger Corbett claiming that Australians pay too much for medicines,” Mr Payne said today.

    “But yesterday Mr Corbett put forward the argument that allowing pharmacies in supermarkets would increase consumers’ access to prescription medicines, saying the move would ‘significantly broaden the community’s access to expert, professional pharmacist advice’.

    “How? Virtually every shopping centre incorporating a Woolworths store already has a pharmacy, as do most smaller centres and country towns with more than a few hundred people.

    “PSA is concerned that allowing pharmacies in supermarkets would undermine the progress that has been made in ensuring the safer use of medicines within the community, the so-called Quality Use of Medicines principles.

    “In addition, the existing shortage of trained pharmacists would be exacerbated, with remote areas the first to suffer as staff are drawn to large population centres.

    “Location restrictions were initiated by government as a way of promoting equality of access to subsidised PBS medicines and associated pharmacy services throughout Australia, not just large population centres. While such restrictions have been identified as a barrier to competition, we should not lose sight of the policy’s objectives.

    “The push for enhanced competition is understandable, and perhaps even justified, but care needs to be taken with any proposed reforms to ensure that the outcomes are an improvement for patient care.

    “PSA would argue strongly about the need for equality of access to pharmaceutical services across Australia – not just large population centres – as a guiding principle to determine the degree to which change is justified.

    “Mr Corbett claims that Australians pay far too much for pharmaceutical products, something not borne out in any international comparison, but he does not talk about a duty of care.

    “PSA believes that a pharmacist exercising professional responsibilities should not be influenced by commercial considerations – the health of the community is paramount.

    “Does anyone seriously believe that supermarkets will not let commercial considerations take precedence over impartial health advice? Remember, supermarkets sell cigarettes and alcohol, two of the major cause of disease and death in Australia.

    “We do not believe that ownership by entities whose primary focus is not on the provision of professional health care will enable pharmacists’ professional obligations to be met.

    “Pharmacists should, in their working environment, not be so encumbered by other requirements that they are not able to fully and freely exercise their professional judgements.”

    The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia is the organisation that represents the interests of Australia’s 16,000 professional pharmacists.

    Tower Systems does not sell systems to pharmacists. Our interest in this matter is the unreasonable pressure by big business against small business in pursuit of profit under the guise of community service.


    Rewards for small business growth

    We have launched the 2005 TOWER SYSTEMS FAST 3 AWARDS. We’re rewarding the three fastest growing small businesses using our software. Entries are open for a month and we have just a couple of metrics we’re using to measure growth. The aim of the competition is to get our user base better understanding the growth or otherwise in their businesses and how they use the software to assess that. The link to entry is here.

    The idea of this competition came out of our Oasis strategy – a strategy designed to provide an exceptional relationship with each of our small business clients, a relationship unlike (better, more valuable and more enjoyed) the traditional software company/user relationship.


    Woolworths versus Pharmacies

    Good the see Australia’s independent small business pharmacisis fighting back in the press today against the greedy push by Woolworths to pressure the government into allowing them to sell prescription drugs:

    Brisbane’s Courier-Mail
    Melbourne’s Herald Sun
    Southern Highland News

    Unfortunately the pharmacists didn’t get the same press Woolworths did with their story Sunday and Monday. That’s what expensive and slick PR buys you.

    The Federal Government and Prime Minister have made a bunch of promises to pharmacists and small business generally. This issue will be a test of these promises. Let’s hope they support small business more than they have in the past.


    Greedy Woolworths chasing independent pharmacies

    The giant Woolworths supermarket group has unleashed an expensive media storm today in its pursuit establishing pharmacies in supermarkets. Woolworths CEO Roger Corbett has been the media tart of the day getting on TV, radio, in print and online. He says it’s all about saving money for consumers. Nonsense. It’s about Woolworths bottom line and Corbett’s compensation. This ABC Online story is more balanced than much of the reporting. At the other end of the spectrum is the Today Tonight story. Unbalanced and built around a price comparison of pharmacies and online services. Of course, the online service does not provide the face to face care and attention of a pharmacist.

    This is a battle of epic proportions and every independent business small business owner ought to engage to ensure that Woolworths does not win. There is more at stake here than the sale of prescription drugs in supermarkets. The Woolworths proposal, if it gets up, will see more small businesses close, customer service fall and Australia lose more independent family owned businesses.

    The Woolwoprths press release can be found here.

    Pharmacists need to get smart and quickly if they are to stop the Woolworths trial going ahead.

    Why do I care? Because I own a couple of small businesses and they are at risk from such predatory opportunistic action as pharmacies and it’s only after the forest is razed that you realise how much you wished it was there. There is still time to stop Woolworths.


    Why we need independent retailers – as if you needed convincing

    This story from the Sunday Herald (Glasgow, Scotland) is further evidence of how big is not better for consumers. The giant Tesco chain has been accused of not stocking Scottish magazine titles in its new city stores. Consumers want/need stocking decisions made closer to where they live. More centralised decisions reduce choice.


    Hungry and rich woolworths increases pressure on pharmacies

    This report in today’s Sydney Morning Herald newspaper reports on a fresh assault by the giant Woolworths group to get government approval for pharmacies in supermarkets.

    Woolworths chief Roger Corbett says pharmacies are the most protected market in Australia.

    He has released a report from ACIL Tasman, an economics modelling consultancy, outlining potential savings that could be made if supermarkets operated in-store pharmacies.

    Current laws restrict the number of pharmacy licences in the country to about 5,000.

    “It’s almost a no-brainer, it’s so obvious and it’s just because of this enormous political pressure that has been established over the years, that this situation has been allowed to continue for so long,” Mr Corbett said.

    The SMH report is well balanced but could use some more depth to explore the value for the community of independently owned and operated pharmacies.

    Woolworths says it wants pharmacies in its supermarkets to help Australian consumers save money. That’s nonsense. They want it because of the profit it will generate. Anyone who believes otherwise is seriously gullible. This is a hungry and rich giant out to harm a struggling small business channel. Once they get pharmacy customers in their stores how do they treat them? While opportunistic promotion and pricing policies – they prey on gullible consumers. This is the strategy of big stores. Small business may look more expensive but you’re looking at a smaller (niche) range and so you don’t get lured into the price game of places like Woolworths.

    This report Woolworths has produced should be ignored by the government and Woolworths should be told to leave the small business sector alone.

    If the government does consider this latest push it also has to look at employment in the pharmacy channel, the employee:turnover ratio in small business compared to giants like Woolworths, the risk to high street tenancies, the damage to family businesses and the social cost of losing more small businesses from our retail landscape.

    Big is not better. Roger Corbett’s arguments are driven by his desire to push the share price up and make his options more valuable.

    Independent retailers in Australia need to fight this push we need to band together and educate consumers, fight the push from companies like Woolworths and support each other more.


    Learning Improv as business training

    Read this blog entry Lessons Learning from Improv and you’ll read about innovative business training. It’s brilliant in fact. The lessons John Moore blogs about what he’s learned from taking Improv. comedy classes. The applications for business are excellent. Take this gem:

    Failure is an Option
    In business we’ve been conditioned to believe failure is bad and most be avoided at all costs. Improv believes in the opposite. In Improv, I’m learning failure is good because it means you are challenging yourself to take chances in pursuit of living in the moment. Failure happens. Mistakes happen. Learn from failures. Learn from mistakes. If we don’t take chances and fail, how else will we ever feel the pleasure of learning?

    Some of us in our software company took singing lessons 4 or 5 years ago and learned similar lessons to those John blogs about. Stepping outside the business box and taking risks can set you free back in the business world. Singing in front of co-workers, when public singing is your biggest fear, proved to be invaluable.

    I’d add to John’s lessons: Respect. Singing with co-workers from different positions within the company put everyone on a level playieng field. That helped build mutual respect.


    A plug for INC. magazine

    I’m a fan of Inc. magazine and their Fresh Inc. blogspot is a good resource of fresh content. While it unashamedly promotes the magazine, there are plenty of comments which add value.


    The Tower Systems 2005 Fast 3 Award

    We take this software business seriously and feel it personally when we see the facilities we have labored over for months and years being abused or, worse, ignored. Good software functionality ignored is something I’ll never understand. Especially in small independent business where good help is hard to find.

    We’re on a mission to get our small business user base using more of our software. But we’re taking small steps to start with.

    We’re launching the TOWER SYSTEMS 2005 FAST 3 AWARD. This will be an award for the three fastest growing users of our software based on a year on year comparison of transactions and revenue. We could have looked at 10 or 20 or 100 but we want to start slow and work our way up. Look at this contest as foreplay. The main game is a way off yet. We also had to make it easy for our client base to enter.

    Once we see how this goes we will have follow-up contest ready to run. Each designed to get our users actually finding out about the data being gathered in their software.

    For the TOWER SYSTEMS 2005 FAST 3 AWARD we will be judging based on year on year sales of what we would call non agency lines – that’s sales of real products and services. No soft gambling, no transport tickets, no bill payment. We’re trying to weed out the areas of business which might have received a kick of growth for other (external) reasons. We want to reward growth chased and obtained by the business owner. This goes to the heart of small business.

    We see our mission as beyond software developer. We need to lead, cajole and guide our client community to better use our software tools so that they measurably benefit from this in their business.

    In reviewing the entries we expect to find some businesses which could use some help along the way and we’re ready with assistance there. This will be in the form of telephone calls and visits to help correct problems we find.

    Selfishly we expect to also find some brilliant ideas which we can learn from too. This will be the icing on the cake.

    So, the first contest is about comparing trading periods for selected categories. Users of our software can do this easily and quickly using our Monthly Sales Comparison report. We’ll ask them to compare January 1, 2004 through April 30, 2004 with the same period in 2005. We’ll then ask for transaction growth and revenue growth numbers in percentage terms as shown in the variance section of this report. This will be entered online and we’ll then ask the top 3 to send in further data to allow verification.

    The winners will receive a certificate, high praise from us and some other token gift we’re yet to determine. This is not about the gift since the prize will be the knowledge of such success and the opportunity to help other like minded small business people to achieve similar success in their businesses.

    Our website will have a link for entry early next week.

    The contest will run for four weeks.



    In the small business software marketplace, especially in vertical niches such as those in which we play, credibility is a key selling feature. We’ve found that openness pays on many ways. On our website you can see how many employees we have, read their names and see their photos in all their glory. You can red the detail of our software updates. Find out about bugs. Read our user advice sheets and check the latest fixes. There isn’t any part of our website hidden for registered users.

    Such openness is an approach we have followed for more than 10 years. It’s something I first came across when I met Jack Stack from the Springfield Remanufacturing Company and author of The Great Game of Business. While this book and the Stack message is about complete openness with employees; business education; business literacy; we pointed outwards and became open about things companies often keep secret, software companies especially.

    We’re only human. Of course we make mistakes. By being up front about our mistakes we’re finding that our customers trust us more. It’s common sense really. Yet it’s amazing how many competitors try and use our openness against us. Occasionally they can dupe someone into believing that our software has bugs and theirs doesn’t but that’s rare. We’re only human. We make mistakes and they do too.

    As Jack Stack advocates, we see business as a game and while we’re not as open internally in some areas as we might be – due to time and cost constraints – we’re more than open in other areas and this creates for, we hope, a work environment which is more enjoyable and appreciated than most.

    As well as a policy of openness is a policy of no spin. Tell it like it us. Sugar only gets in the way of what you’re trying to say and will dull the potential of the message.


    Free training … a word of mouth experience

    One of the challenges we have is when one of our small business clients sell their business. The new owner, having paid a big chunk for the business, usually doesn’t want to pay for training in the use of our software. But they need training to understand our system. To address this situation last year we commenced offering a free day of training for new owners. While new user training would usually run for 3 days, we felt that with a day from us and a couple of days at hand over we’d cover the issues.

    This decision has helped us retain businesses as clients and ensure that bad habits do not transfer to new owners. A good win win.

    Now, we’re expanding on that with a mentor program for new owners and a series of consultations to help them settle in with our technology. We also offer general business advice/assistance for those who want it.

    The interesting news today has been a couple of leads from people who have bought businesses where software from a competitor is in use. The competitor has refused free training and that’s got these new business owners considering a switch.

    You gotta love word of mouth.

    « Older posts