Oriental food specialist hails impact of integrated EPoS

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One of Scotland’s leading oriental supermarket chains has praised the impact transformation of its EPoS systems has had on its business.

Cashier screens display functions in Chinese

Matthew’s Foods was originally founded in 1997 by managing director Matthew Ng as a catering supplies wholesaler serving Chinese and oriental restaurants in Glasgow. It opened its first retail outlet in the city in 1997, and since then has expanded steadily to now operate supermarkets in Dundee, Aberdeen and Edinburgh as well. 

However, as the chain grew, each new store had to run, technologically speaking at least, as a separate entity. Operating in different cities, the till systems and back office infrastructures where unique to each, sales data from POS units were collected at end of business and imported into Sage.

After the Dundee store underwent a major re-fit, Ng decided it was time for change. He contacted an old friend, Roddy Mackenzie of Glasgow-based ACR EPoS Systems, to see what could be done about finally integrating the IT systems across all four stores.

“I was asked to the opening of the rebuilt supermarket in Dundee,” said Mackenzie. “Matthew asked me if I would be interested in supplying an EPOS solution to him again as he was dissatisfied with his existing system, coupled with the fact the company he was dealing with for EPoS was discontinuing support for his solution.”

A key requirement Ng had for the new system, Mackenzie continued, was that he wanted it to link dynamically to Sage200. Sage controlled the product database and pricing and populated the EPoS database. He wanted updates sent to all PoS units in all locations, and all transactions sent back, processed and imported into SAGE as individual sales orders, all in real time.

In response, ACR in conjunction with a major Sage developer undertook a complete overhaul of Matthew’s Foods’ EPoS systems, customising an established EPoS software platform to integrate with Sage across all sites, and supplying powerful new AURES YUNO terminals to handle the performance demands.

“The EPoS software development to integrate with Sage200 was unique to Matthews Foods and took 10 months to perfect,” said Mackenzie. “The software and hardware included integrated EFT, weighing scales at each PoS and 10.1” customer displays showing both English and Chinese – as most of Matthew’s client base are Chinese, this was most important.”

For Ng’s part, he readily acknowledges the difference the upgraded system has made across all of his stores. “The AURES YUNOs are a great improvement on the modular Toshiba PoS terminals we had previously,” he said. “The hard drives, display and processor are all integrated into one unit which is much better aesthetically. We have them in all sites with eight units in total installed.

“The YUNO terminals make customer transactions fast and effortless, the secondary displays allow the customers to see and understand what is being scanned as they display the transactions in both English and Chinese. The staff are mostly of Chinese origin so the cashier screen also displays functions in Chinese which allows for easier training. Overall the whole process at checkout is fast and efficient.”