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Management, Feature Stories












More focus on customer management

Keeping abreast of a store’s daily and weekly trading is vital; however, it’s also historical – once the results are in, they can’t be changed. That’s why there’s an increasing need for POS software providers to develop modules to help a business create new sales and capture new customers.

The choice in POS software is one of the most important considerations a business can make regardless of whether it is a small, ‘mum-and-dad’ style jeweller or across a number of stores.

Alicia Stickel, sales and marketing manager at Bill Hicks Jewellery, is adamant that operations have improved since introducing SWIM software four years ago. “It has without doubt made us more efficient. The ability to know where each job is at any given time is an absolute necessity for us, especially at busy times.”

Commenting further on the benefits to the business, which was established in 1998 and operates as an ‘upstairs jeweller’ in central Sydney, Stickel says, “SWIM allows any one of us to log in and see where something is, where it needs to go to next and enables us to prioritise with our jewellers and other trades. It enables us to take care of each other’s customers with confidence.”


On a larger scale, Regency Jewellers first moved to POS software 20 years ago when the ARMS system was installed. General manager Aaron Broom says the seven-store group migrated to the Signature Series product in 2006.

“We know our position very quickly at any time, at every store and in each cost centre from various perspectives. Daily trading data is accessible at store-level and at head office,” Broom explains. The Regency Jewellers stores are located in country NSW – spanning Dubbo, Young, Bathurst and with a head office in Orange – so the need for a multi-store platform is imperative.

In a similar way, Jane Smith, operations manager of York Jewellers, requires accurate information from more than one location at any time and she is sold on the Edge Pulse system from Retail Edge Consultants.

“The new Pulse system is absolutely fantastic and has so many capabilities. We can remotely access on weekends or 24/7 to see how well we’re trading, what’s selling and who’s selling it. It’s an extremely good new management tool,” she says.

York Jewellers has two stores in very diverse suburbs of Sydney – Woollahra and Penrith – therefore the need to manage staff across a wide area is most important.

“The new [Pulse] coaching module, which has just been developed, is excellent and focuses on staff performance including ROI on each staff member and KPI management. It also has a mentoring management tool to help with staff appraisals,” Smith adds.

Along with the rise in social media and changes in consumer shopping behaviour, it’s important that POS systems are all encompassing, recording sales and management data while having the ability to manage marketing and customer promotions.

As marketing manager, Stickel’s focus is on customer relations: “We aim to improve customer relations through SWIM, which allows us to keep important customer information, such as dates of weddings, milestone birthdays, anniversaries etc, so that at any given month we can produce a report on what occasions are happening and when.

“We can then be proactive in contacting our customers or their partners, and we can also export the customer database for use in our digital marketing.”

An important marketing tool for Regency Jewellers is its customer loyalty program.

“Knowledge is power in a retail business so it is very helpful to be able to access our data in a targeted fashion. We use the ARMS customer relations management (CRM) tool to identify existing customers who qualify for a campaign, often through past spending trends,” Broom explains. “The software enables us to drill down very specifically to select customers who have purchased a particular piece of jewellery or have purchased jewellery from a particular supplier.”

Broom adds the CRM tool allows promotions to be managed by department category or over any date range.

York Jewellers also places a heavy focus on customer retention via its loyalty program, and Smith says that’s another important function of Pulse.

“Like all software, it relies on human intervention, but we have been able to create a good customer database for direct mail and EDM campaigns and collect other data we need for our loyalty programs so that we can talk direct to our customers,” she explains.

Ian Pattison Jewellers is another retailer that utilises SWIM. The store opened in 1975 in Ocean Grove, Victoria and according to managing director Adele Pattison, the software – which was purchased in 2007 – provides a clear snapshot of all aspects of the business.

“Having operated in a small coastal town for forty years means we have regular loyal customers – they each receive our loyalty customer card, which is scanned upon transactions,” Pattison explains. “SWIM enables us to see a history of sales under a customer’s name that allows us to track their metal preference, brand likes, jewellery tastes to assist a friend or family member with a gift. It provides a warmer and easier shopping experience.”

For Broom, non-sales are just as important as sales: “We can even identify customers who have joined our mailing list but who have never made a purchase in our stores, and because our loyalty card customers can be easily tagged in the Signature Series, communication to that group can be done fast.”  


3 part Point of Sale report

Part 1: Back to the future for Point of Sale
Read about the POS Systems on offer

Interview with Malcolm Alderton, ARMS
Interview with Raeleen Kaesehagen, Octahedron
Interview with Gordon McLister, Retail Edge Consultants


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Coleby Nicholson

Former Publisher • Jeweller Magazine


Coleby Nicholson launched Jeweller in 1996 and was also publisher and managing editor from 2006 to 2019. He has covered the jewellery industry for more than 20 years and specialises in business-to-business aspects of the industry.

Ellendale Diamonds Australia
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