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  2. 2. 2006 • RATING TOP POS SYSTEMS Contents ® 4 Top 20 Systems Now in its third year, the POS Scoreboard offers the industry’s only ranking of the top foodservice point-of-sale FOUNDER software companies based on company size, number of Douglas C. Edgell 1951-1998 installations and user satisfaction. 4 Top POS Software Companies Summer 2006 PUBLISHER 6 User Satisfaction Scores How do POS software systems compare in the opinion of Lenore O’Meara foodservice operators? The user satisfaction scores offer ext. 245 s charts and analyses of how systems fared in the criteria deemed most important by the operators themselves. EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Reid A. Paul 6 Top POS Software Systems ext. 315 s 6 User Satisfaction 8 Overall Performance ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE Leah Segarra 8 Strategic Value ext. 270 s 10 Total Cost of Ownership 10 Return on Investment CREATIVE DIRECTOR Colette Magliaro 12 Ease of Upgrade ext. 203 s 12 Support and Service 14 Start-up Restaurants (1-4 units) ART DIRECTOR Pamela C. Ravetier 14 Small Chains (5-50 units) ext. 255 s 14 Large Chains (51-200 units) 14 Enterprise Chains (200+ units) W W W. H T M A G A Z I N E . C O M 14 A Final Word Who participated in the 2006 POS Scoreboard and what questions were asked? Look here for a final word on the study’s methodology why some responses were excluded CHAIRMAN/CEO from the study. Gabriele A. Edgell PRESIDENT Gerald C. Ryerson Special Supplement s POS Scoreboard s 3
  3. 3. 2006 • RATING TOP POS SYSTEMS Top 20 Systems Foodservice point-of-sale systems continue to elicit a great deal of loyalty and showcase technological innovation. With more than 400 responses to this year’s study, POS users ranging from owner/operators of single-unit restaurants to CIOs at major restaurant, casino and hotel companies responded to the study. Now in its third year, the POS Scoreboard highlights key changes that continue to reshape the foodservice technology industry. Clearly, the POS industry is be- TOTAL POS COMPANY USER coming increasingly diverse. Once the POINTS VENDOR TOTAL SATISFACTION sole purview of casual-dining chains, POS solutions can now be found in 87.42 1. Micros Systems 50 37.42 virtually every setting. In recent years, the emergence of POS solutions de- 87.34 2. Radiant Systems 49 38.34 signed for single-unit restaurants 86.47 3. POSitouch 48 38.47 have helped transform the industry by 85.75 4. Maitre’D 46 39.75 making the POS touch screen the 85.30 5. Squirrel Systems 45 40.30 hallmark of restaurants worldwide. The juxtaposition of off-the-shelf 83.50 6. Digital Dining 45 38.50 solutions, next to pizza point of sale, 77.91 7. xpient 39 38.91 next to high-end casino solutions 76.67 8. pcAmerica 41 35.67 makes for an odd reading of the POS 72.59 9. Restaurant Manager 36 36.59 Scoreboard. Hospitality Technology does not portend to suggest which 72.50 10. ParTech 43 29.50 solution has the best golf module or 72.44 11. SilverWare 41 31.44 the easiest interface or the best take- 72.17 12. Panasonic 35 37.17 out solution. Nor would we suggest 72.14 13. Speedline Solutions 33 39.14 which solutions makes the most sense for your individual foodservice 70.18 14. Torex Retail 31 39.18 operation. Nevertheless, there are 69.89 15. InfoGenesis 35 34.89 more essential elements that foodser- 69.14 16. FuturePOS 33 36.14 vice POS solutions have in common than separate them. While many of 68.88 17. Volante Systems 31 37.88 these companies may not compete 68.39 18. Aldelo Systems 39 29.39 directly with each other, they all offer 51.32 19. H.S.I. 16 35.32 foodservice point-of-sale solutions. 34.30 20. FireFly Technologies N/A 34.30 This top 20 chart and especially the rankings that follow, represents the opinions and feedback we receive from the survey respondents. This feedback—the “User Satisfaction” score worth 45 points in the overall ranking—is the essential element that helps determine where the POS companies fall. For the Top 20, we also factor in POS functionality (35 points), number of terminals in- stalled (10 points) and company revenue (5 points). Of course, how each restaurant company values these various elements may differ and are part of what makes the POS choice so complex and unique. 4 s POS Scoreboard s Special Supplement
  4. 4. 2006 • RATING TOP POS SYSTEMS Top POS Software Systems SCORE COMPANY VERSION In addition to the point-of-sale software compa- ny, respondents to the POS Scoreboard were 40.2 1. Digital Dining 7.3 asked to identify the software version they cur- rently used. To qualify, a top POS system needed 37.3 2. POSitouch 5.2 to have at least five responses. For the second 37.2 3. Torex Retail 3.5 year in a row, Digital Dining version 7.3 ranked 35.8 4. Squirrel Systems One Release 3 first. Squirrel Systems One version 3 made its second straight appearance as did Maitre’D, 33.9 5. Maitre’D 2005 although with its 2005 release, rather than the 2003 release that was fourth last year. POSitouch version 5.2 made a return appearance, having first appeared in the 2004 Scoreboard, but miss- ing in 2005. And Torex Retail (formerly Savista) version 3.5 made its debut in the chart this year. User Satisfaction SIZE COMPANY SCORE User satisfaction represents the total score for all nine questions (see Methodology, page 14, for the More than 1. Digital Dining 38.50 list of all the questions) presented to POS system users. Each question was worth five points for a 100,000 2. POSitouch 38.47 possible total of 45 points. Once again competi- Installs 3. Radiant Systems 38.34 tion was extremely tight across all the scores, with less than two tenths of a point separating the top three scores in the more than 100,000 installs cat- 20,000 to 1. Squirrel Systems 40.30 egory. The two other categories were similarly 100,000 2. Maitre’D 39.75 competitive, although not quite as tight. Top com- Installs 3. Torex Retail 39.18 panies tended to have a high average score across all nine questions. The average user satisfaction score for the entire study was a solid 35.9, which Fewer than 1. Speedline Solutions 39.14 translates to a score of 80% across the board. 20,000 2. Volante Systems 37.88 There were some significant changes from the Installs 3. FuturePOS 36.14 leaders reported in the 2005 Scoreboard. In fact, of the top three solutions in 2005, only Digital Dining, Radiant Systems, Torex Retail (Savista) and Speedline repeated from last year. 6 s POS Scoreboard s Special Supplement
  5. 5. 2006 • RATING TOP POS SYSTEMS Overall Performance SIZE COMPANY SCORE Each year, respondents are asked to indicate the criteria that is most important when selecting a More than 1. POSitouch 4.26 POS system, and in previous years overall per- formance was selected by a wide margin. While 100,000 2. Micros Systems 4.25 in 2006, service and support won out, overall per- Installs 3. Radiant Systems 4.18 formance remains an important measure of the general attitude towards POS systems. Interestingly, the average score for all the re- 20,000 to 1. Torex Retail 4.39 sponses was quite high—4.11, .08 higher than for 100,000 2. Squirrel Systems 4.38 any other question—reflecting a general happi- Installs 3. InfoGenesis 4.31 ness with POS systems in the industry. In the more than 100,000 category, the three top companies from 2005 all repeated, although Fewer than 1. Volante Systems 4.35 with higher scores. Similarly, Torex (Savista) and 20,000 2. Speedline Solutions 4.30 InfoGenesis repeated as did Volante Systems and Installs 3. FireFly Technologies 4.29 Speedline Solutions. Strategic Value SIZE COMPANY SCORE While foodservice operators may be happy with their POS systems overall, there is a sense More than 1. POSitouch 4.09 among restaurateurs that the systems may be lacking as a strategic asset. Respondents gave 100,000 2. ParTech 4.07 the lowest marks overall in this category, with an Installs 3. Micros Systems 3.85 average score of only 3.92, which may suggest that there is room for improvement. The responses to this question may reflect a 20,000 to 1. xpient 4.40 growing attitude that POS is becoming more of a 100,000 2. Squirrel Systems 4.33 commodity and that differentiation will come from Installs 3. pcAmerica 4.18 other criteria like sales and support and costs. Perhaps it should not be a surprise that the most critical respondents were the largest operators Fewer than 1. Speedline Solutions 4.33 evaluating the larger POS software companies. 20,000 2. FuturePOS 4.20 As a result, scores for all the companies, including Installs 3. FireFly Technologies 4.13 the top performers seemed to be a bit depressed in this category. Among the repeats from last year’s top performers were Micros Systems, ParTech, xpient, pcAmerica, and Speedline Solutions. 8 s POS Scoreboard s Special Supplement
  6. 6. 2006 • RATING TOP POS SYSTEMS Total Cost of Ownership SIZE COMPANY SCORE Across the board, scores for total cost of owner- ship (TCO) were extremely competitive in the sur- More than 1. POSitouch 4.09 vey. All three categories were separated by no more than one tenth of a point. With an average 100,000 2. Radiant Systems 4.07 score of 4.01, it is easy to see that this is one of Installs 3. ParTech 4.00 the most competitive criterion for selecting point- of-sale software. Once again, there was a great deal of overlap 20,000 to 1. xpient 4.41 with the top companies from the 2005 Scoreboard. 100,000 2. Squirrel Systems 4.34 POSitouch, ParTech, xpient, pcAmerica, Dinerware Installs 3. pcAmerica 4.33 and Aldelo (NextPOS) all offered repeat perform- ances. Dinerware, however, was the only compa- ny to hold its number one position. Given the close Fewer than 1. Dinerware 4.38 attention of many restaurant companies to TCO as 20,000 2. Speedline Solutions 4.35 a key measure for software systems, this consis- Installs 3. Aldelo Systems 4.28 tency is hardly surprising. Return On Investment SIZE COMPANY SCORE Return on Investment (ROI) is another classic measure of value for technology solutions. While More than 1. POSitouch 4.09 it is less in favor now than it was five years ago, most restaurant companies still focus on ROI 100,000 2. Digital Dining 4.06 when making any major technology purchase. A Installs 3. Micros Systems 4.03 significant number of respondents identified ROI as the most important criterion when selecting a POS system. 20,000 to 1. Squirrel Systems 4.43 Given that ROI and TCO are often conflated or 100,000 2. xpient 4.41 viewed together, it is interesting that there is not Installs 3. Torex Retail 4.19 greater overlap between the top performers. In fact, few of the top companies in the 2006 Scoreboard fared as well last year. Only Micros Fewer than 1. SilverWare 4.26 Systems, xpient and Speedline Solutions did 20,000 2. Volante Systems 4.25 so. The average score for ROI across the entire Installs 3. Speedline Solutions 4.23 survey was 4.01 this year, up slightly from 3.98 last year, perhaps reflecting a growing sense of satisfaction across the industry. 10 s POS Scoreboard s Special Supplement
  7. 7. 2006 • RATING TOP POS SYSTEMS Ease of Upgrade SIZE COMPANY SCORE According to the 2006 Restaurant Industry Technology Study, 43% of foodservice companies More than 1. POSitouch 4.13 plan on replacing their POS system within the next two years, and another 19% within four years, sig- 100,000 1. Radiant Systems 4.13 nalling a period of significant change for the near Installs 3. Digital Dining 3.93 future. Clearly, the ability to easily upgrade the cur- rent system will have significant impact on the shape of the industry for years to come. 20,000 to 1. Squirrel Systems 4.32 Interestingly, overall scores for ease of up- 100,000 2. pcAmerica 4.27 grade were relatively low, with an average score Installs 3. Restaurant Manager 4.14 of 3.95. This question also had the broadest range between a top score of 4.56 for FireFly Technologies and a low of 3.93 for Digital Dining. Fewer than 1. FireFly Technologies 4.56 FuturePOS, Restaurant Manager, Digital Dining 20,000 2. Dinerware 4.37 and Radiant Systems all scored well in the 2005 Installs 3. FuturePOS 4.31 Scoreboard on this question as well. Support and Service SIZE COMPANY SCORE More than ever, restaurant operators seem con- cerned with the quality of service and support. More than 1. Digital Dining 4.36 Seventeen percent of the POS Scoreboard re- spondents listed service as the single most im- 100,000 2. POSitouch 4.31 portant criteria when selecting a POS system, Installs 3. Radiant Systems 4.30 or as one respondent wrote, “service, service and then more service.” Interestingly, the second most important criteria was reliability or stability 20,000 to 1. Restaurant Manager 4.70 at 12%, both were well ahead of last year’s lead- 100,000 2. Squirrel Systems 4.49 ing response overall performance, which received Installs 3. Maitre’D 4.27 just 5% of the vote. As important as service is, it is a good sign that foodservice operators seem to be happy with Fewer than 1. FireFly Technologies 4.57 the quality of service they are receiving from their 20,000 2. FuturePOS 4.39 vendors. Restaurant Manager’s 4.70 is the high- Installs 3. Speedline Solutions 4.36 est score for any company on any question in the entire survey. The average score of 4.02, more- over, is the second highest overall (tied with ease of installation). 12 s POS Scoreboard s Special Supplement
  8. 8. 2006 • RATING TOP POS SYSTEMS A Final Word As we discovered in the 2005 Scoreboard restaurant companies of various sizes seem to have dif- ferent attitudes towards their POS software solutions. In general, smaller restaurant/foodservice companies (as determined by number of units) tend to be more lenient when rating their POS sys- tems than larger operations. This pattern is even more pronounced than in 2005, with smaller restau- rants providing among the highest evaluations in the survey. ME THODOLOGY Between May and June 2006, 403 restaurant, hotel, casino and other foodservice operators oper- ators completed an online survey developed by Hospitality Technology magazine. Respondents were asked a series of ques- SIZE COMPANY SCORE RESTAURANT tions about their point-of-sale RESPONSES software solutions and to pro- vide an email address for verifi- Start-up 1. FuturePOS 41.6 12 cation. The survey contained four questions about the restau- Restaurants 2. FireFly Technologies 40.3 14 rant/ foodservice company 1-4 units 3. pcAmerica 40.0 12 (how many units does the com- pany operate, how many units are you directly responsible for Small 1. Volante Systems 41.1 49 and what POS vendor and ver- Chains 2. POSitouch 36.6 118 sion do you use). In addition, 5-50 units 3. Maitre’D 35.6 167 operators were asked to rate their POS software version on a scale from 1 (abysmal) to 10 Large 1. Squirrel Systems 35.1 670 (perfect) in the following criteria: Chains 2. xpient 32.3 1063 overall performance, total cost 51-200 units 3. Radiant Systems 31.6 753 of ownership, return on invest- ment, strategic value, ease of upgrading, ease of installation, Enterprise 1. Micros Systems 35.3 1651 ease of integration, ease of ad- Chains 2. xpient 35.1 5665 ministration/maintenance and 200+ units 3. Torex Retail 34.6 2883 quality of support and service. Each of these questions had a weighted value of five and taken together constitute the user satisfaction rating (See page 6). As the Scoreboard has grown in prominence, so too has the incentive to cheat or exaggerate scores. In an effort to make sure the Scoreboard is fair, accurate and beyond reproach, we took a number of steps to ensure a level playing field. Respondents that were identified as POS re- sellers or vendors were eliminated. In addition, any scores deemed exceptionally high or low that could not be attributed directly to a recognized restaurant company (via email address) were also removed from the survey—scores averaging higher than 43.0 (95%) or lower than 15.0 (33%). It is our belief that there are no perfect POS systems out there, yet there were a disproportionate num- ber of perfect and near perfect scores. Nearly every POS company had scores disqualified as a re- sult, though undoubtedly, the effect was stronger on some company scores more than others. In future years HT will continue introduce more safeguards to ensure accuracy and fairness. 14 s POS Scoreboard s Special Supplement