Dispensaries operate much like any other retail establishment: a physical location for inventory and sales, a target audience and customer base, and a point-of-sale (POS) system for processing transactions.
POS systems are standard equipment for retailers, loaded with applications that process sales tax and generate reports to track inventory and revenue. In the case of cannabis, dispensaries are governed by a body that oversees regulatory compliance and this reporting is deemed essential to the operation, making these POS systems a critical part of the business.
What happens if POS systems experience interruptions, like freezing or crashing, or worse? Say the hard drive crashed and data is lost…the California Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC) isn’t going to accept that the records of sales and inventory are irretrievable. Considering this same oversight requires the use of on-site surveillance and video recording systems in specific areas of the location, dispensaries need to take steps to ensure data is safe.
Grow facilities and dispensaries are an exciting new channel for technology vendors, and traditional POS systems can’t be used in the same manner in the recreational cannabis market. Technology suppliers have reacted quickly to meet demand in the massive untapped market, catering to the specialized nature of technology requirements in the heavily-regulated industry.
Maintaining computers and devices is critical because, as already stated, data loss is unforgivable with the complex regulations dispensaries face. Regulations require accurate records for sales, inventory, securely managed customer records, and the more common retail sales tax collection and reporting, and discrepancies in the cannabis marketplace will land dispensaries more than just a fine.
When reliance on technology is what keeps operations running smoothly, a reliable support relationship is a must. Partner with an IT support provider who knows the cannabis industry understands the market-specific complexities that dispensaries must navigate, and have a reliable reputation for maintaining hardware and software to minimize downtime and keep technology working smoothly.
An Internet connection is all a business needs to become a target by cybercriminals, and the methods used to gain access to sensitive information are increasing in sophistication. Cybersecurity measures must outdo cybercriminal activity in complexity to be effective and protect networks and data.
More than half of all small businesses that experience a cybersecurity breach fail to recover, closing doors within a year. Whether due to revenue loss, reputation loss, or any of the other areas of impact, it’s obvious why cybersecurity should be a significant focal point of any POS system and technology strategy.
Features vary between cannabis-specific POS systems, and there are already several major players vying for market share. User-friendly features include:
The platforms that encompass the above details have earned a reputation for being top players:
Branding itself as the next revolution in cannabis retail POS software, Cova promises to simplify operations, streamline workflows, and deliver a scalable solution for growth demands. Cova’s cloud-based approach is a bold position, taking advantage of Microsoft Azure cloud services for data storage in a secure environment.
Full integration with BioTrackTHC, Leaf Data Systems, and Metrc make Cova more than just user-friendly, but its open application programming interface (API) means that as the industry changes, Cova POS can adapt and integrate with new platforms as they emerge.
Claiming to be enterprise-quality, Treez offers a retail management software with all the features that dispensaries require plus a few for extra credit, like data analytics for consumer purchasing history and habits to support marketing, and employee accountability. Integrating employee time tracking, tasks, and attendance is what makes Treez shine.
One of the most customer-focused POS systems for dispensaries, Green Bits includes all the necessary compliance features but is heavily focused on the customer experience. Seamless integration with Weedmaps and Leafly help customers locate dispensaries, and Green Bits also has a built-in customer loyalty program to reward repeat customers and provides instant access to customer records for faster transactions.
It’s clear why choosing the right POS system is such an important decision, but partnering with the right IT support provider and having top-notch cybersecurity measures in place to protect data and ensure full regulatory compliance are equally important factors.
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