Distributor's Expertise Opens Door To New Business For VAR
PC Revolution.ca (Ottawa), like most VARs, uses a variety of methods to locate new business, including customer referrals, an Internet presence, networking, and cold calling. It recently saw its cold calling efforts come to fruition with a local retail chain.
After calling on the chain several times, PC Revolution.ca had developed a slight rapport with the manager, but hadn't been able to close a business deal. However, when the retailer had a back end computer problem that its existing service and support firm could not solve, it called PC Revolution.ca for help.
When the VAR responded, it discovered the chain's inventory management system (comprised of the chain's own proprietary software system, a PC, and a bar code scanner) was down. PC Revolution.ca focused more on general-use PC solutions and had little experience with POS (point of sale) systems. The VAR called one of its distributors, EMJ Data Systems (Guelph, Ontario), which specialized in POS hardware and software, among other areas.
With the help of EMJ, PC Revolution.ca explored the possible problems (software program, keyboard connection, character recognition) with the system. The VAR eventually discovered that the bar code scanner was not working and could not be fixed. The VAR ordered a lightweight scanner, the LS 2208, from Symbol Technologies (Holtsville, NY), based on its experience with the product's durability. Also, EMJ is part of Symbol's PartnerSelect program.
The new scanner solved the retail chain's inventory problem and gave PC Revolution.ca a new customer. The experience also prompted the VAR to expand its business to include POS for retail and wholesale businesses. As PC Revolution.ca's POS business grows, it continues to rely on EMJ as a strategic partner and a source of knowledge.