What You Need to Know About Restaurant POS Maintenance

Written by  on 12 July 2016

POS Buyers GuideNothing lasts forever, including your point of sale (POS) hardware. But with proper POS maintenance, you can extend the life of your systems and avoid costly and frustrating downtime.

In a restaurant environment, the terminals, touchscreens, and printers you rely on for customer transactions run for hours on end while exposed to heat, moisture, dirt, and grease. That can greatly reduce their lifecycle. Below are some important steps to take to extend the life of your POS system:

  • Invest in a POS maintenance and service package. Your vendor, integrator, or reseller likely offers various levels of remote and on-site service, including help desk, depot repair, on-site repair, or advanced exchange programs, as well as remote login to give the vendor online access to the system to troubleshoot and fix problems. For example, RSS offers an advanced exchange service so that if a restaurant’s POS system is down, they can request and receive replacement hardware the next day. RSS even offers a similar program for headset repair. While many restaurants view headsets as disposable, over time the cost of discarding damaged headsets can quickly add up. RSS provides free inbound shipping, with options for repair, replacement, or reconditioning the headsets. There’s also a Headset Care Plan that provides unlimited repairs for a monthly fee.
  • Spot check the hardware. Have staff in each area of the restaurant check the printers for paper, and make sure the POS terminals or kitchen printers are working and inspect them for any damage. You should also test the printers and credit card systems prior to each shift so that you aren’t caught by surprise later if something has gone wrong. Repeat these POS maintenance inspections at the end of each shift as well.
  • Clean the equipment. Restaurants are messy places for computer hardware. Touchscreens can be cleaned with a cloth that has been sprayed with ammonia-free glass cleaner (don’t’ spray it directly on the screen), while the exterior of the printers and terminals can be cleaned with a soft cloth.
  • Arrange professional inspections. At least once a year, have a trained technician inspect the hardware. Your vendor or reseller can provide these services, some times as part of a larger POS maintenance package.
  • Restart the system periodically. You don’t have to shut everything down every night, but periodically restarting the POS system can help clear bugs and glitches.
  • Know the lifecycle of the hardware. Find out what the expected lifecycle of the terminals, card readers, and printers should be and perform an evaluation to see what needs replaced once you reach the end of those time periods. Equipment in the kitchen, in particular, will experience a lot more wear and tear than other POS hardware.
  • Keep the system updated with the latest software and firmware. This is especially critical for payment systems, since you have to ensure PCI compliance and keep security patches up to date to avoid breaches. Again, this can be rolled into a POS maintenance agreement with your vendor or reseller.

For restaurants, having a POS system go down can be a disaster, which means you need immediate service. Getting an on-site technician at the last minute is expensive and inconvenient. Regular POS maintenance is critical for ensuring system uptime.

Make POS maintenance a priority, and you will reap the benefits of lower repair costs and fewer system outages.

POS Buyers Guide

Read 1037 times Last modified on Thursday, 04 August 2016 14:08

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