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True Fact #2

No other inventory system is so rich in labor-saving features.

After all, saving time is one of the biggest reasons you install an inventory system! Books In Store pays particular attention to what is easiest for you, not what is convenient for the programmers. The following list is not definitive; there are hundreds of efficiencies built into the system. We hope, however, you get a feeling for our high regard for your time and effort.

Cascade Electronic Ordering

Cascade electronic ordering works this way:

  1. You create an order containing all the books you want. You transmit this order electronically to your vendor of first choice (say, Baker & Taylor).

  2. This first vendor responds, electronically, confirming your order. The confirmation notes which books will be shipped and which will not (out-of-stock, etc.).

  3. Books In Store removes from the original purchase order those books that vendor number one cannot ship and (this is the neat part) places these rejects on a new purchase order, created just for this purpose.

  4. You now transmit order number two to your second-choice vendor (say, Ingram).

  5. Repeat steps three and four with as many vendors as necessary to get the books you need on the way to your store.

The labor-saving trick here is step three, where Books In Store creates the subordinate purchase order made up of items that cannot be supplied from vendor number one. Since this subsidiary order can consist of (literally) thousands of items - and is created with zero typing on your part - you save a prodigious amount of work and time. Books In Store pioneered cascade ordering. Even today, some seven years later, very few inventory systems offer cascade ordering at all.

Ditto Keys

As you enter new titles into your database, Books In Store remembers what you typed in each field. When the contents of a field replicate the preceding entry, you "ditto" the former entry into the current location. This means you type the word KNOPF only once when adding books from the Random House catalog. On all books after the first, you simply tap the ditto key at the Imprint field. The ditto key is even smart enough to replicate only the publisher-colored part of the ISBN when used in the ISBN field!

Finding an item

On some systems, finding an inventory item requires digging through two or more menus to invoke the appropriate search (Search, Search what?, etc.). With Books In Store, you type in your search argument at our "ID=" prompt and the program finds the book. You do not need subordinate menus to dictate the search protocol.

Tab stops

Suppose you have to make the same several changes to a significant number of items (e.g., retail, list, and net prices). With Books In Store you can set tab stops for the fields of interest and breeze through the job.

Recommended orders

Books In Store has over one hundred different stratagems for creating suggested orders. The more common ones are based on demand, but the essential point here is that a 1,500 line recommended order can be created by Books In Store in less than a minute. What this means is that you can order much more frequently, even our your work flow, improve special order response time, and most importantly, ratchet up inventory turns.

Report formats

Books In Store offers a very sophisticated Report Writer program. You decide what a report should contain and in what order and what detail the program should present the data. After you define and create a report, however, Books In Store allows you to save that report format for use tomorrow or next week. No more re-inventing the wheel. You can even direct the report to your word-processor or spreadsheet program.

Net prices

You may enter net (cost) prices either as a specific dollar value or by typing a discount percentage. For a book listing at $10.00, you may type either "6.00" or "-40" to record the net price; either generate the same result. Quick! How much did a $29.95 book at 43% discount cost? See the advantage?

And more...

There are hundreds of 'knowbots' like these in the Books In Store system; we hope these few examples give you a feel for the effort expended in making Books In Store efficient and easy to use. We're quite proud of the result. Remember, at Books In Store, every single person involved in the design, programming, and testing of the system has actually sold books for a living! No other system of which we are aware can make that claim.



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