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What software should I use?

A question submitted to Spas2b:

I’m not even sure where to begin looking for software to manage a spa. I think I basically know what the software needs to do, but what other features should I be looking for? What is the most popular package that others are using?

Honestly, I don’t really know where to begin…

Our Response: From Justin Maconi, Harms Software Inc.

Jeff,
Let me start by stating that I myself work with a Software company that specializes specifically in the area of Salon/Spa/Medical Spa Management. My company’s name is Harms Software and we are the creators of Millennium. Being in sales I have come across this question my fare share of times. I think there are several factors that come in to play when people look to management software for their business.

The first factor for most people is price. In this particular industry you can get software ranging anywhere from 300.00 to 10,000.00 and this leaves many people at a crossroad. Which direction should they go? Should the start cheap and then upgrade once they start generating more revenue, or should they go expensive and hope that the software works as good as the price would lead you to believe. The short answer to this question is do your homework. Does the software meet all the needs of your business? Does it have the growth capabilities to make it worth the investment? What is the company’s culture like? Does it share the same ideals and values as your own?

These may seem like pretty deep questions to be asking yourself when considering purchasing a software, BUT this will help you decide of the program and company are on the same path as your business.

Example: You can find software that is priced at 300.00; it gives you appointment book, register, and client information storage. Seems great at first, but what happens when something goes wrong. How good can their tech support? How good is their development? Do they continually strive to better their product?

I can tell you that Millennium is one of the more expensive software in the industry, priced between 1,995.00 and 4,995.00. But there is a reason for that. We have outstanding support, continued development, education for existing customers, as well as salons and spas that do not have the software. We are also always looking to better our product because we know that as soon as you stand still, you get surpassed.

Now, my personal opinion i feel that when you look to software, price should come second. You should be always asking, what can this software do to improve my business and make my life easier. Look for growth features. Look for applications that will increase productivity. Make sure that the software company has reports that can capture not only standard information (i.e sales figures, commission, inventory count), but also analytical numbers. Make sure that you can get out what you put in. We all know we can put client information in and track sales history, but can you take away important demographic information and use it in your own custom marketing campaigns?

Now, yes I am sure you realize that I mentioning a lot of what Millennium has, but this not to say it is the ONLY solution for your business. There are businesses where we fit and others that we don’t. We are recognized as the industry’s leading salon/spa software, but that does not make us right for all businesses and that is something you should remember when dealing with any software company. Many will make you feel like theirs is the only solution that is right for you and they are wrong. As I mentioned there are many factors that need to be taken into consideration before you make your final decision and anyone that you deal with should be able to understand them and meet them.

Jeff if you have any quesitons you would like to talk to me about directly, I would be glad to answer them. I can be reached by either email or phone. My contact information is below. Hope this helped :)

Justin Maconi
Harms Software Inc.
Business Solution Specialist
phone: 1-888-813-2141 ext. 144
email: mailto:jmaconi@harms-software.com
http://www.harms-software.com

About Leslie

Spas2b Inc. is a full service Spa Development company, specializing in Online Spa Management Distance Learning Courses, Spa Business Manual Instant Downloads & Resources, and Spa Consulting Services.
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