The Alliance Supermarket employs a POSS (Point of Sale Systems) in tracking own inventory. The POSS comprises of various elements, including a laser scanner. The scanner reads the information borne products’ UPCs (universal product codes) at the supermarket’s checkout counters. UPCs are unique numbers, or bars, that identify the products bearing them. The company utilizes UPC information in updating own inventory records with respect to the items it sells. The company’s POSS has enhanced its capacity to stock up inventory punctually.
That has ensured that the company is increasingly capable of identifying possible increases in the demand for particular items. That is especially because Alliance Supermarket hinges own inventory stocking up on chronological demand patterns. The patterns, as well as the related preferences, are unique for each of the company’s stores as they are dependent on its clients. Even then, the POSS demands information from each of the stores simultaneously and treats them homogenously (Society of Photo-optical Instrumentation Engineers, 1993; Talluri & Van, 2005). Notably, the company’s suppliers regularly place requests to help them in targeting specific consumers for particular sales as well as promotions.
Innovative and New Uses of Information Gathered from the Point of Sale Systems
Essentially, POSS are all-in-one platforms for keeping tracking of given companies’ cash flows. Traditionally, POSS are used in tracking product sale, monitoring unit dollar cost changes, determining when restocking is required and analyzing levels of specific inventories for particular items. The information that Alliance Supermarket gathers from its POSS be put into various innovative, as well as new uses. First, Alliance Supermarket can use the information in informing its planned adjustments on own buying resolutions for cyclic, or seasonal, purchasing trends according to Schwartz (2010) and Talluri and Van (2005). Second, Alliance Supermarket can use the information in enhancing its item pricing preciseness through the integration of credit card authorization capabilities and bar-code scanners with the Point of Sale Systems.
Third, Alliance Supermarket can use the information in defining, as well as actualizing, unique sales tracking pathways for different items. Notably, diverse businesses receive payments in diverse ways. For instance, using the information, Alliance Supermarket may resolve to be keeping invoices for particular classes of goods like expensive electronics open until the warranties given against them expire (Talluri & Van, 2005). That would mean that the company should reconfigure the POSS to put the electronics’ sales on hold until the warranties expire. The company may use the information in deciding whether to sell some goods on hire purchase basis and equip the POSS with a loan calculator to compute the monthly payments for the goods. Fourth, the company may utilize the information in its direct marketing campaigns.
Useful Information in Bettering Services and Reducing Costs
Using the POSS, Alliance Supermarket can obtain information on the items that are regularly bought by customers from particular areas (Society of Photo-optical Instrumentation Engineers, 1993; Talluri & Van, 2005).Using the information, it can agree with the customers to be delivering the items to their homes directly from their suppliers rather than having them pass through its premises. That would mean that the company would require a smaller space for storing goods than it currently does, possibly at a lower rental cost. The delivery of the items to the customers’ homes would be quite convenient to the customers.
A New Approach for Alliance Supermarket
Alliance Supermarket can obtain purchase information regarding individual customers. It can use the information in its direct marketing campaigns. Particularly, it can use the information in personalizing its promotions, as well as tailoring them, to individual customers. That can help enhance service value and the individual customers’ purchase experiences if Alliance Supermarket personalizes, or customizes, them. it can personalize the experiences at diverse stages, including when sales processes are underway (Freeman & Peace, 2005).
For instance, Alliance Supermarket can customize its online promotions to the interests of individual customers by determining the promotions and information that may interest them from the information. That would ensure that the company does not facilitate homogenous promotions to customers with varied interests and information needs. Notably, using the information, the company can invite individual customers to participate in the designing of their promotion-related experiences, possibly according to their socio-cultural and ethical persuasions.
Point of Sale Systems Gathered Information and Privacy and Ethical Considerations
Discussions regarding the ethical, as well as moral, conduct in the IT field are common in businesses as most of them are using IT resources like POSS. The resources facilitate businesses to heighten their scope of gathering, assembling, as well as circulating, client information. The gathering, assembling, as well as circulating, client information spawns fears concerning the appropriate utilization of the information and the safeguarding of personal privacy.
The number of consumers registering complaints regarding the abuse of their personal information gathered by POSS is increasing by the day. Some of them contend that the organization that access the data via POSS share it with other parties, possibly violating their privacy (Freeman & Peace, 2005; Schwartz, 2010). Alliance Supermarket should put in place ethical codes to be observed by all its employees collecting and analyzing the data it gathers via its Point of Sale Systems. Particularly, the codes should require them to keep client data protected and private. The company should also consider giving complete disclosures of its client information utilization practices to all its customers.
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