Case Studies \ A retail store management system
Our client, an Ireland based IT company, wanted a software solution that would enable retail stores to integrate their business processes such as sales, inventory management, order processing etc into a single centralized unit leading to increased operational efficiency. Based on these requirements, Icreon developed the web based retail store management system. The software can be installed on an Intranet and used by retail stores to manage their day-to-day operations. Real-time sales and performance reports can be generated by the head-office to monitor the performance of all stores.
Our client required a web based solution that they could market to clients within the retail industry. Stores were to be provided the facility to create and manage a customer database including details such as customer information, their order and credit histories etc. The solution was to provide stores with the ability to manage their inventories send purchase requests to their distribution centers and manage the stock among their various warehouses. Provisions to generate reports such as sales reports, customers etc were required to be built into the solution. Additionally, the system was to enable stores to create and manage a database of all their employees. The head-office was to be provided with the facility to oversee the functioning of all their retail stores thereby enabling them to obtain a holistic view of their business.
A web based solution to streamline the operations of retail stores
- Provides a means to streamline operations by integrating business processes into a single unit
- Automates the process of tracking inventory
- Enables easy monitoring of stores by the head office
- Increased efficiency by reducing administration costs and improved performance
The users of the system will be the employees of the company using the application. Access to the various modules of the application will be based on the roles assigned.
The solution can be used by retail chains to oversee the functioning of their various outlets. Each retail outlet can use the solution to manage their operations independently of the other. However, the head office can oversee the functioning of all outlets and can run sales and performance reports on an individual outlet or collectively for all outlets. The solution has been divided into various modules, these include:
Customers: The details of all customers including personal details, address, communication details, sales person etc, of the retail outlet can be stored. The customer details can be drilled-down to view the details of all orders placed by a specific customer, credit notes, invoices, etc.
Stock: Retail outlets can use the solution to manage the details of the stock available. The system details out the total units of an item in stock, the allocated units and the unallocated units. Stock categories can be defined and items can be added the categories. Details such as product name, code, supplier, re-order level, discount, selling price, etc can be stored for each item. Multiple items can be grouped together and offered for sale as a package. The price, discount etc for the package can be defined. A database of suppliers and tax rates can also be created and managed.
Sales: In addition to the details of all customers, all the details confirmed and unconfirmed (i.e. enquires/quotes) orders placed by the customers can be viewed. Each order can be drilled-down to view the customer details, customer's payment history for the order, credit notes (if any) for the order, and the details of the items that were included in the order. While entering the details of the payments received for an order, the gift vouchers and credit notes of the customer can be used against the payments.
Dispatch: Dispatch orders can be created and managed through this section. A dispatch contains multiple dockets each containing the items to be delivered to a specific customer. The user can create define customer dockets and schedule deliveries. The dispatch order can be printed and the status of the order can be updated.
Stock Management: The details of the goods received from the distribution center are displayed. The outlet can define their warehouses and assign the goods received to specific warehouses. They are also provided with options to handle stock transfers between warehouses and stores. Gift Vouchers, for specific amounts, can be created and issued to customers.
Reports: Sales reports can be generated to monitor the performance of the outlet and individual sales personnel within the outlet.
Employees: The outlet can create and manage a database of all its employees. They can also manage an HR calendar.
Administration: The administrator can create and manage user accounts, classify them into groups and grant them access to the various modules of the system. They can also manage the details of the company and view the users' activity log within the system.
One of the main features of the solution was the use of use of ribbon menus to consolidate and display all functions that can be performed in an interface, in a single area, thereby saving the user the hassle of browsing through various menus to locate the desired function.
Technologies used in developing this application are:
The retail management system includes extensive use of AJAX to provide a desktop like feel. You can watch the demo below to see the application in action. The demo takes you through a few interfaces available in the application. You can take a look at the power of AJAX and also how it can be effectively used in web applications.