For over 25 years, Troy, Mich.-based Active Software & Hardware Systems has developed business management and inventory software for POS systems in multiple vertical markets. Serving clients in the United States and Canada, ASH also builds custom POS systems.
"We handle approximately 30 verticals but are making a push in four segments: convenience, liquor, medical marijuana and vape," said Bill Pirtle, Affiliation & Partnership Development Specialist at ASH. In addition to verticals just mentioned the ASH Point of Sale Pro Management System offers additional industry-specific editions for merchant, restaurant, auto service, salon, jewelry and golf shop applications, among others.
The ASH VIP user association services program being developed will soon provide quarterly software updates for clients, and hosted webinar and in-person meetings to discuss updates and additional features clients would like to see built in. Advanced accounting, advertising, e-commerce, electronic shelf tag, inventory, loyalty, multilocation, purchasing and vendor management tools are available through ASH.
"Our system is not the least expensive option, but our software is customized to the user," Pirtle said. "There is not a small, medium, large option that results in being crammed into a mid-range system or being buried in features they'll never use. We have custom solutions that will fit the business, not the business trying to fit the solution."
To illustrate ASH's commitment to detail, the vape store management system allows owners to build ingredient lists for proprietary blends and extracts each component from inventory when ordered.
An optional database with approximately 95 percent of product stock keeping units for convenience, liquor and grocery stores supports transfer of existing inventory files. "This product list includes a complete liquor file that, in Michigan, can sync with the State to automate ordering and also download quarterly price changes and print new shelf labels," Pirtle said, noting that the system can be adjusted to meet individual state requirements.
"We also have a feature I call Margin Enhancement," Pirtle said. "We can program liquor price changes in peak selling times to enhance the profit. This is optimal in college towns and less price sensitive areas, but with use of our built-in loyalty program, regular customers can still get liquor at regular price even in peak times." The feature can also be used to discount hot food over time, which reduces food waste at the end of the day.
Built into the margin enhancement program is a wireless electronic price tag system called e-Tag. "E-Tags change the price on labels to new pricing through the point-of-sale system so shelf prices match the POS system at all times," Pirtle said. "In most liquor stores using the premium pricing, ROI can be as little as 90 days." He added that the e-Tag system can add as much as $1,000 in margin per night for some businesses.
According to Pirtle, ASH offers reasonable annual service plans and phone support, which can be paid upfront without obligating clients to regular payments or specific processors, since ASH is processor agnostic. "We do the software install in the Troy office and ship it, so all the installer has to do is assemble it on site," he said.
ASH expects to release details soon about a partner link that will provide fully and semi-integrated solutions for agents. ASH also plans to integrate its new POS solution for the petroleum market with several major processors. Its push inventory system (where ordering for stores is done at distribution centers based on sales) offers an excellent option for jobbers and chains in the petroleum market, Pirtle noted.
ASH welcomes reseller partners. "We're working to bring on agents that will be resellers for us," he said. "If you have a customer that is not satisfied with your current offerings, give us a call."
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