Hardware Retailing

SEP 2016

Hardware Retailing magazine is the pre-eminent how-to management magazine for small business owners and managers in the home improvement retailing industry.

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September 2016 | HARDWARE RETAILING 65 can start with, which offers you an opportunity to try out the system and see if it's right for you. Most cloud systems come with smartphone and tablet apps as well to make it easy for you to manage your storage on the go. And operating from the cloud also means the software you currently use, such as your POS or accounting programs, is stored in the cloud rather than on your local computer or device, so it's quicker and easier to make any updates, which can be done automatically. "There are a lot of benefits to operating on a cloud-based system," says. Kirkland. "One is that IT requirements can be lessened, because there is no software in your store. If it's time to make a change in the software, those updates can be made instantly. There's no waiting until the store is closed, and no taking a disk to all of the computers after hours and waiting for updates. The cloud has made the update process easier." It's also easier to fix any problems that may arise with cloud-based storage, Kirkland says. Many hosting systems have a full IT department on staff, which means they usually fix problems quickly, resulting in less down time than there would be if you were trying to fix the problem yourself. If you have wireless Internet in your store, for either yourself or your employees, it's important to make sure that connection is secure with a strong firewall that is updated often.

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