Terri Miller knows how marketing is supposed to work. She has served as the marketing director in the travel franchise division at Carlson Companies and spent time on the agency side where she worked with clients such as Century 21 and Toro.
She's been at Great Clips for the past 11 years, where she is vice president of marketing and communications--and where she's overseeing a technology evolution that's changing the way stylists and their customers do business. The brand has been refining its POS system over the past few years and is now using the technology in unique and effective ways. In the following interview, Miller discusses how the brand uses its POS system and the benefits the brand has reaped.
We use it to track and report all of the customer transactions in the salon. It is also used for numerous other functions, such as scheduling, inventory management, employee time tracking, all POS functions (tender, discount/coupon tracking, etc.), and management reporting.
Yes, all salons are required to use this software. Having all salons on one software platform provides us with a distinct competitive advantage. We are able to implement innovations such as online check-in across all salons. We are able to pull data from all salons and use this for strategic analysis, marketing, and operations purposes. We are able to have all salons track and report information the same way, so we can have a consistent focus on our key brand measures and use these to drive our growth and profitability in our salons.
The system was developed by ICS in the early 1990s on a DOS platform. We transitioned to a Windows platform in 2003, and are currently working with ICS to move this to a web-based platform. The system is continually enhanced to meet our changing business needs. It is completely customized to Great Clips and our wants and needs.
Stylists check in by simply touching a few buttons on the POS screens. Our staff check in customers by searching for their phone number or name in the database, and then selecting the services they want.
Any and all kinds you can imagine. Data to help with scheduling, measuring employee efficiency and effectiveness, wait times, customer visit history, floor hours, when customers checked into the salon, voids, re-dos, exceptions, haircut times, customer counts, sales, coupon dollars, etc.
Brand measures give them a focus. They can compare their performance and trends against the standards, determine where they need to improve, and then put plans in place.
Scheduling helps them deliver freedom to customers by minimizing waits, and also manage payroll, their biggest expense item.
We use the data for numerous analyses to help franchisees with smart discounting, improving scheduling, and growing their salons. Brand measures give us a way to focus our nearly 3,000 salons, 3,000 salon managers, GMs, franchisees, our 25,000 salon staff, and corporate staff. We focus on these brand measures, and growing and improving performance on them, as we know that these drive our business.
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