Our technology

PCMS are a long time supporter of the The Association for Retail Technology Standards (ARTS) initiative and currently have representation on the main ARTS Board.

PCMS have achieved validated conformance for both ‘POS Log’ and ‘Data Model’ within the Vision portfolio.

our_technology

Totally open

The portfolio of products conform to many open standards and allows retailers a choice of:

Operating systems

  • The Vision Portfolio runs under any operating system with a Java Virtual Machine (JVM). This allows a retailer to choose from a number of operating systems such as Windows 2000/XP, Linux, IRES, AIX, SCO and OS 400. Retailers can also mix operating systems in the same store (e.g. Linux on the PoS and Windows on the server), to minimise costs where it counts and maximise functionality where it matters.

Databases

  • Retailers can choose any database that is ODBC/JDBC compliant. They can also mix databases to optimise cost/benefit ratios. The Vision Portfolio has been certified with Oracle, MS SQL, and DB2. It has also utilised open source databases such as Postgres, SQL and MySQL at the store level.

Hardware

  • In the Vision Portfolio environment, hardware independence means it can run on hardware from any of the leading PoS suppliers, on any Network Computer, on a Kiosk, a handheld device, or an AS/400.

Devices

  • Retailers can use any PoS device that uses industry standard drivers.

Web browser

  • Some of the products in the Vision Portfolio are browser based solutions designed to run over the Internet.

Multiple deployment options

  • Thanks to the layered architecture utilised in the Vision Portfolio, you have the choice of running the applications in multiple configurations.

In-store server model

  • A database in the store with browser based Store Management functions connected to the Point of Sale solution.

Central server model

  • A central database with no database in the store, access to Store Management functions via a browser in store and connect to in-store Point of Sale solution. This eliminates database maintenance and hardware cost at the store level.

Mixed model

  • A database in every store and a central database for those data elements that are useful to the whole chain (such as users, item file, refunds in any store, customer demographics, etc) with connectivity to in-store Point of Sale. Access to Store Management functions is via our browser based solutions.

Scalability

  • The Vision Portfolio is fully scalable and flexible. It can be configured to handle anything from a single lane to a 400+ lane store using either thick or thin clients.

International scope

  • The Vision Portfolio supports multiple languages (European and Oriental languages such as Chinese, Japanese, and Korean), multiple currencies, multiple taxes, and multiple date formats.

Ease of customisation

  • With its object oriented architecture, the Vision Portfolio allows applications to be customised to meet a retailer’s needs. Customisations can include individualised user interfaces, advanced workflow, as well as extensions to a specific feature or function. The Vision Portfolio can adapt to a retailer’s existing business flow and does not require changing processes to match the application. Over time, competitive influences require store formats to evolve or radically change. The Vision Portfolio meets this need by allowing multiple formats to run on the same application, even if they are in different sectors such as Retail and Hospitality.

Ease of integration

  • The Vision Portfolio enables the distribution of data in various ways. It has a well defined XML API to allow the import and publishing of data. This data can be formatted in multiple ways ranging from standards based IXRetail to custom integrations. It can also integrate through web services, http communication, asynchronous messaging, batch polling, and database integration. These integration options can greatly simplify the job of interfacing legacy systems.

Independent user interface

  • The Vision Portfolio user interface is totally separate from the database and the business logic. This means that a retailer can have a single set of PoS functions, yet provide a completely different look and feel for different store or brand facias.

Resilient non-stop selling

  • No business can afford to have systems down. With The Vision Portfolio, critical data is kept on the PoS to enable transaction processing while off-line. Data synchronisation occurs automatically once connectivity is reestablished. Properly configured, on-line authorisation can continue uninterrupted.

Self-sufficiency

  • The Vision Portfolio was designed to provide retailers with the option of bringing the product in-house for development or maintenance.