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The Wheels on the Bus…

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Last week, as I was driving, the oil change indicator lit on my dash. If you have a car, van, bus, etc. you know what I’m talking about. That little, nagging light that refuses to turn off until you hand your car over to the mechanic. Trying to be the responsible adult, I did just that. The mechanic “kindly” informed me that my tires needed replacing. I don’t like these kinds of surprises. But it is better that than having a blowout while driving. I rely on my car and so had no choice but to spend money I had not budgeted.

Your company is a lot like a car – there are lots of components to keep it running smoothly. You have drivers (staff), fuel (product or service), body (office or building), and an engine and transmission (computers & network). Like your car, it has bits and bobbles that need periodic replacement. Sometimes you’ll get that nagging light – the printer in your office will let you know when it needs replacement ink or toner. Often you just get the unwanted surprise – typically when it comes to your infrastructure.

Computers tend to keep on running – until they don’t. And contrary to popular belief, the internet does occasionally go down. When either of these unexpectedly happen, everything can screech to a halt.

Did you know that computers and servers have an average lifespan of between three and five years (Google it!). While your computers may last longer, the expense required to replace each workstation and server every 4 years would put a tremendous strain on most budgets. Instead, consider replacing/rotating/upgrading 20-25% of your computers every year or two. This helps to ensure that your critical system keep chugging along while spreading out the capital expenditure. Remember, you can always relegate older hardware to areas of your business that are not mission critical.

Have you ever had a construction crew cut a cable and take out the internet to your building? I have. Several times. There is an easy, and inexpensive fix for this. With the rollout of 5G (and even LTE), cellular hotspots can be both fast and inexpensive. Many routers include a failover that automatically switches to the hotspot to keep you online. This simple insurance policy is critical for processing credit cards and can even be useful if you are using a SAAS-based point-of-sale solution. You may just need a mobile payment option and we offer two of the best in the industry.

One last thing to think about (and often is the last thing you think about) – Is your backup working? Are you sure? Do not wait until that drive fails to check. The cost to recover data from a crashed drive can cost over $5,000 and is not one you want to incur. And recovery is not guaranteed. How much data can you afford to lose? Hint – very little. Verify that your backups are running daily. If you are not backing up to the cloud, give us a call. We offer a reasonable solution that is rock solid.

We all take for granted the convenience that our cars provide. The same goes for your company’s computer and network infrastructure. Keep up with the routine maintenance. Your customers, employees and your blood pressure will thank you. And remember, we’re here to help.


Soft Intelligence has been working with retailers for 36 years and is the nation’s premier consultant and channel partner for NCR CounterPoint. We are here to help you with new point-of-sale installations, upgrading existing software and hardware (including Self-Checkout options), adding capabilities, or even developing custom enhancements. Our highly qualified team averages over 20 years of CounterPoint experience per person and we have offices in five states. Email sales@softintelligence.com or call (866) 797-1264 Opt. 1 for additional information. Let us help you succeed.


Meet the writer:

Chip Allen was a specialty retailer for over 25 years and has extensive industry knowledge and experience. He can help you improve customer service, grow your business, and increase your profitability.