The biggest change associated with implementing a computer system is the training of personnel involved. All personnel need to understand not only how the computer system will affect not only their job functions, but also how the computer system will affect those around them. Thus the sales representative needs to understand that the information they enter about a customer will be used to create a direct mail database (for example) with the result that the name should always be entered last name first, or first name last, but, whichever method is used needs to be consistent across the company as a whole.
The Levitz system is ideal for the larger retailer that uses centralized functions for purchasing or for paying sales representatives from a central office. The American Data system is good for retailers who have multiple locations, but who may not have warehouses at each location. Their system allows for centralized control of operations, but also gives each store the flexibility to process transactions on an as-needed basis. HFD is primarily designed for single-store operations where there is not a need to communicate with a central, off-site computer system.
Perhaps the greatest success factor is the way in which the company approaches the computer system as a whole. The implementation needs to be viewed as a positive step for the company, and one which will help the company be more competitive and better able to survive in the long-run. While every employee can not (and should not) be a part of the selection process, keeping employees updated on the progress of the selection and implementation of the system can help in a smooth transition and make ensure the success of the system.
The three systems each performs the basic task of providing inventory management and sales assistance. However, the tools they use to accomplish those tasks vary widely. The Levitz system, which uses the Unix operating system, is the most flexibility of the systems, and