Kingswood’s EPoS still in front for Stewart
When Kingswood Golf Club wanted a comprehensive till system 12 years ago, Jeff Hilliard as one of the club’s owners chose five EPoS tills from Open Solutions. Nowadays Mark Stewart is the Club Secretary and he hasn’t seen anything better to change the original decision. So when the club’s new boutique hotel The Lodge needed an EPoS system, Mark simply got another one from Open Solutions.
Charles de Haan explores Mark’s loyalty to this particular brand of business solution.
Charles de Haan: “Mark, how long have you been using Open Solutions EPoS software and tills, and where are these six EPoS tills installed?”
Mark Stewart: “12 years, and our six EPoS systems are in the bar lounge, Pro Shop and The Lodge, which is our 12 bedroom boutique hotel that’s on site and opened recently.”
CdeH: “So from a manager’s point of view, how would you rate these Open Solutions’ EPoS tills and software for everyday operation, reports and so on?”
MS: “Aside of the staff at the counters dealing with drinks, equipment and room payments, I need them for the daily sales reports to see what products have been sold and their value, what sales each department’s achieved – golf shop product sales, societies, equipment hire, green fees, etc.”
“All this information tells me day by day how we’re doing, what we may need to watch, promote, whatever. It’s vital for me to keep a close eye on every aspect of the club’s bottom line, as we have to meet challenging targets each year.”
CdeH: “You’ve had OS a long time, yet there’s plenty of good EPoS systems out there, so why’s that?”
MS: “It was a good decision originally, and we haven’t seen anything since then from the other developers to challenge our preference for Open Solutions. We also needed an EPOS system across all departments, and the Open Solutions system has had bar code scanners for the Pro Shop goods for several years, which others didn’t, so it also did and still does everything we need across all parts of the club.”
CdeH: “Mark, what about reliability of their software and hardware in your club’s case, and how important would you say the support factor is as a customer?”
MS: “12 years of operation with the same brand really just speaks for itself. Our Open Solutions EPoS systems have proven to be highly reliable, and very importantly, they’re easy to use even for temporary staff.”
“But above all, they’ve been very well supported over that time too. Our business depends on these tills to remain stable and functioning 24/7, and that’s what we’ve always had with Open Solutions.”
CdeH: “OK, now Open Solutions’ CEO Ed Beale and Group Operations Director Tony Jones are aiming to enhance the already good standard of support, so that when you call on the ‘phone, it’s answered every time, evenings and weekends are all covered early to late, emergencies identified immediately, and so on.
“You’ll be getting a dedicated support engineer who calls you every month to check that everything’s OK and if there’s anything you need or want, or capabilities you want added to the development schedule, two site visits a year, a user group for your region, and in the future, a Google forum group for OS customers to share all experiences, ask any questions, including those that aren’t software related.
How does that sound to you, Mark?”
MS: Great, because it’s the support that makes the big difference when the technology’s largely similar. Answering calls I expect, but a dedicated support engineer, regular calls to check if we’re all OK, and so on, is perfect as far as I’m concerned, and again, I think that’s a level of service delivery better than any other offering, so yes, I couldn’t be happier!”
CdeH: “Is there anything else you’d add?”
MS: “Yes, I get a number of my peers at other clubs asking me what we’ve got and so on, and when they hear that a really busy club like Kingswood runs a six till Open Solutions EPoS system, and that we’ve done so for 12 years, I can tell they’ve not heard that elsewhere and that they’re impressed.
“So with the new service level agreements coming in, I’d recommend Open Solutions to any club that’s looking at their EPoS system and wondering if they can do better.”
" Its additional detail such as the receipts feature is certainly reducing both calls to the office and the time it takes for us to give them the details they're after. The app lets them do that themselves and lets us get on with all the other things we're trying to do."
" To date, we’ve not seen anything that matches this capability, and that’s got a lot to do with why we’ve kept OS for over 12 years. The simple fact is that everything works, is stable, and does what we want it to."