POS systems have come a long way. Originally invented, in part, to help keep employees from stealing profits in the late 1800s, today we have robust solutions that integrate sales, inventory, accounting, and data analytics. A POS is more than managing sales transactions; it’s critically relevant to the guest experience. And its evolution continues to disrupt the status quo at foodservice, restaurant, and retail outlets alike.
Cloud-based POS is one of the leading trends. Hospitality Technology reports that 61% of merchants are looking to acquire a cloud-based POS for their business. Operators prefer these advantages of having a cloud POS, citing the following primary reasons:
Functionality – Most cloud-based POS solutions can integrate with other programs whether those programs are on-premise or in the cloud, so operators do not have to give up their existing solutions. For the integration to work, however, operators should look for POS systems with open APIs (Application Programming Interfaces), which allows third-party applications to fit right in with existing solutions, such as online and mobile ordering, as well as flexible payment options.
Manageability – On-site systems require an investment in time and staff resources to set up, learn, and continue to maintain. Cloud-based POS can eliminate most of that. Software updates come from the cloud to the POS terminals and tablets, making the process much more manageable with minimal, if any, business downtime. Software updates can be relatively transparent.
Flexibility – Cloud POS often operates well on small-form devices such as tablets. Solutions that are used on familiar, mobile devices will allow service staff to better manage their guest engagement objectives, which in turn elevates service levels. There is also some flexibility in the migration process for operators who may choose to transition to a cloud-based system in their own time, adopting cloud POS in stages.
The 2020 hospitality POS market will see an acceleration of mobile and cloud-based POS to make things easier for service staff. We will also see growth in more self-service options for guests, including new use cases for kiosks, web-based apps, and location-independent order placement and delivery. The advancements will be seen globally, with noticeable growth in areas across APAC.