Casio V-R100 Android based EPoS Solution accompanied with CardSave Chip & PIN, establishes itself as a worthy business partner to the new ‘The London’ hairdressing salon.
Catering for those seeking cosmopolitan treatments within the beautiful and rural setting of Malvern Wells, The London offers that extra urban sophistication for the discerning client seeking more than the traditional provincial hairdressing experience. Jonathan is the forward thinking owner who recently relocated from the hustle and bustle of London. Jonathan details the backdrop to the move:
“I instinctively knew that the dated premises could be developed into something special, contemporary and unique, capturing the drama of London’s theatre-land into an opulent setting more reminiscent of an extravagant hotel lobby than a traditional local hairdressers. Whilst I wanted the furnishings to be decadent and a throw-back to bygone stylish eras, I also knew that it was essential to adopt a modern and affordable booking, accounting and management system to run seamlessly in the background.” Jonathan’s instincts were confirmed by over a decade of previous experience using PC based EPoS solutions designed specifically for salon environments, which although contained specific retail advantages, came with costly resource outlays and were distinctly limited in other areas of small business management.
From the start, Jonathan wanted to be able to offer customers integrated card technology, so he contacted payment processing provider, CardSave, who elected installation partner, ANDRetail to recommend the selection of Casio’s V-R100 Android based EPoS terminal. The transaction was made realistically affordable by a small daily lease fee of just £2.20 per day without a large up front capital outlay. Now armed with a fully integrated Electronic Point of Sale terminal that would facilitate end of day balancing of both cash and cards and lots more besides, The London was ready to open doors and turn heads. Installation happened within a week with the unit arriving pre-populated from a supplied spreadsheet of line items, services and even coffee shop products to support a future business venture. The speed of turnaround pleasantly surprised the owner as his experience with previous traditional PC based systems incurred a far greater installation overhead, but the V-R100 was plug-and-play straight out of the box. Training of the five staff was also easy and occurred within a few hours, slotted-in in-between appointments with ANDRetail offering remote help and training when required. Placed on the main reception counter, the V-R100 seemed immediately at home with a small base area but with a large 10.4 LCD touch screen for usability and a sleek black design to match the opulent surroundings. Tough, durable, moisture and heat resistant – ideal attributes in a hairdressing environment - the unit is quiet and ambient; low on electricity consumption and features a cash drawer opening noise alert.
One month down the line and now very much a part of ‘The London’ experience, the results have been impressive; with further strides still being made. Client bookings are now automated; with The London now being able to see, at a glance, a full customer profile along with extra detail such as any qualifying discounts and full contact details. The system converts transactions into a record of previous treatments, and via frequency of visits, the V-R100 can also suggest the next potential date of visit based on customer records.
Critical financial reporting can now also be delivered in real time; with point in time readings of takings available at a glance. Indeed, this can also be done remotely via login online or through automated emails being forwarded every day to report on the running and takings of the salon.
Jonathan comments: “Having set the business up from scratch in a vastly different location from previous ventures; with no existing client base, I am keen to be able quantify different trends here – for instance, if one treatment is more popular than another, I can put in place promotions to help grow the popularity further still or suggest incentives for less popular services.” Along with detail on transaction patterns, Jonathan can also now accurately predict the appropriate staffing levels required. With the keen-to-expand business open across 7 days a week, that’s a distinct advantage.
The enhanced reporting also drives The London to greater stocktaking accuracy. With relatively small areas to house stocks of salon products, it is essential that product levels remain constant but not overly stocked. As the V-R100 captures every transaction, it automatically tallies the stock levels to reconcile product availability. Armed with this updated inventory, the monthly stock take becomes a simple manual checking exercise with a resultant accurate order for the wholesalers. In the future, apps can be downloaded from the Android platform that will allow the purchase order to be raised and placed directly with the suppliers, automating the whole process.
Essential to any small business in the first critical few years of trading is accurate book-keeping but it can also be the bane of many new independent retailers. Thankfully, with the V-R100 in place, accounting and reconciliation is far easier. Accurate and documented book-keeping; VAT returns and company accounts are all eased with reports available at a touch of a button. As is the complex process of accurate reconciliation of treatments against commission-based wage slips. Now, this detail is seamlessly recorded at the point of transaction, meaning that the hairdressers on shift are compensated for services accurately without a manual tally.
Building any new business takes commitment, hard work and an increased marketing effort to expand customers. As such, Jonathon is just starting to explore the marketing capabilities offered by the Android EPoS solution as it links seamlessly to social networking sites such as Facebook and allows access onto the salon’s own developing web site, www.thelondon.me. Along with a plethora of marketing apps available online, the pre-loaded CBMS (Casio Business Management Software) is also set to be instrumental in the increased marketing push. Jonathon explains “The business is largely based on positive referrals and now we can further promote those referrals online. Whilst we won’t be bombarding potential customers with promotional emails, we will shortly start to trial the SMS text service contained in the CBMS to remind customers about appointments occurring within 48 hours.”
In the future, the enterprising Team at The London hope to expand the salon further still; offering coffees and refreshments, again London style, to the population of Malvern Wells, where Flat Whites and Macchiatos remain a relatively new concept. In readiness, the V-R100 is pre-loaded with coffee shop items on the menu.
Jonathan summarises his current position. “I really don’t know how a new salon would operate without a smart, agile EPoS solution such as the V-R100 running. Without it, I know that I would be missing distinct competitive edge and would be operating without full business decision making tools.”