Cleaning up as you go along
As an MIS professional, some of the most disturbing things that I find on customer sites relates to incomplete work being done on implementation projects, disorganized implementation, and a failure of the person(s) doing the work to clean-up after themselves. This is not just an end-user issue, but often involves MIS personnel from organizations who are long gone. These issues often come back to haunt others in the future…
A recent example of this involved a previously orphaned multi-store customer who wanted to change their Credit Card processor.
Their polling software had been configured so that it would not send set-up related files globally to all stores. The end-users had been using the software for a number of years and had apparently changed their processor at least (4) four times previously. When the previous changes had been made to the Credit Card set-up, whoever did the work only got around to changing the store records at some of the other remote sites. With this work being done inconsistently over the years, it resulted in conflicting configuration records being on file between the Hub server and various remote servers. This meant that if you looked up the same records at different sites, all of them were likely to be different. If anyone had switched on the sending of global set-up data, the results could have been catastrophic, disabling the Credit Card set-up at various sites could have resulted in data loss.
With no documentation of the historical changes available, this made the tasks of determining exactly what changes were needed, and where they were needed, much harder than it should have been..
The end result was a unnecessary stress for everyone involved, a longer changeover implementation period than should have been necessary, more disruption for POS staff, and increased support costs for the company.
If you are planning hardware or software infrastructure changes, and would like a professional review of your systems, please contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department.