Is your c-store technology a burden on employees?

Take a moment to think about the prevalence of technology in our daily lives. As we attempt to get more done in every day, in every hour, in every minute, we don’t always notice the different technologies interacting in our lives that enable us to achieve new levels of convenience. When do we notice? When it’s inconvenient.

When it works as intended, software and hardware join together in a harmonious symphony to provide us efficient technology each and every day. It’s only when one of the pieces begins to stop working, the symphony screeches to a halt and we begin to notice the software and the hardware individually.

You may be asking yourself, “why are we even talking about hardware in a world obsessed with software?” Because only when software and hardware are designed with the other in mind do the two help you achieve operational efficiently and stronger competition in your market.

The Importance of Software & Hardware, Together

The software we use on a daily basis is impossible to run without a hardware system. Without hardware, software is reduced to a string of code. And without software, we can only perform limited functions with our hardware, at best. Think of the early days of the POS, even, where each action took a physical key punch or turn of a crank to produce the basic action of opening the cash drawer. Using the wrong software on incompatible or outdated hardware can sometimes feel like those early days of the POS for c-store employees and managers.

Without the right hardware, software is unable to perform the tasks it was built to complete and becomes a burden to your daily role. Imagine going to scan your lottery tickets, only to find that the device no longer works, the hardware is too old, or an update to the software has left you with an incompatibility to the device.

Technology that’s built to work with specific and unique software and hardware helps improve your job, allowing you to do more, in less time. It also keeps you, and your business, future-looking, breaking the tired stigma of the convenience industry being “stuck in the past.”

Creating Operational Efficiency

The easier it is for you and your employees to complete their job, the more efficient your business becomes. Up-to-date technology plays a huge part of that efficiency journey. The moment your chosen solution gets in the way of Becky, your newest employee-of-the-month, from scanning your item-level tracking, is the same moment your employee’s job stops being efficient and begins being a burden on your business environment.

And technology changes quickly. An initial drop in efficiency may not be noticed in the beginning, so make sure to take a step back and truly evaluate the efficiency of your solutions. Software purchased only a few years ago may already be reaching the end of its life.

If your technology is no longer helping your business propel forward through time saving automations, it’s holding you back. Using outdated technology, whether it’s the software, hardware, or both, can lead your business down a path of inefficiency and give your competitors the edge they need to succeed. You want to make sure you can count on your solution every day.

Helping You Compete

If it only takes your employees a few days to learn how to use the technology in your convenience store, but it takes your competitors more than a week, you’re already at a huge advantage. You have the ability to not only leverage trained staff but redeploy that staff to focus on customers earlier than your competitors can. And ultimately, your goal is to provide customers with the best experience possible to keep them coming back.

By pairing hardware with a software that’s build-for-purpose, you can rest easy with the knowledge that an incompatibility will be unlikely. When working in tandem, hardware and software make your business more competitive because a failure, bug or glitch due to inharmoniousness of the technology is reduced.

The ease of mind that comes from knowing your technology is working to the fullest can’t be replaced. When your solutions work together, you can meet the demands of your business all while knowing you’re accurately reporting, processing, and analyzing data within your convenience store. It’s important to leverage the right solutions for your business.

Make sure you’re able to provide reliability to not only your employees, but your business as a whole. When you no longer need to worry about your technology, you and your employees are able to discover new ways to make things more convenient for your customers. Like, making sure your regular, Jimmy, gets his large coffee and morning bagel with cream cheese every Wednesday before heading off to work. His way of getting over the ‘hump’ of the mid-week.

Ultimately, if your technology is doing its part, you shouldn’t even be thinking about it. So, do you have the right solutions for your business?

Did You Know: Your Source for PDI News provided by PDI, the leader in enterprise management software for the convenience retail and petroleum wholesale markets.