Success Story:
Allegheny Furniture Consignment

A Custom Retail Management Solution

Summary

Consignment furniture stores have many unique challenges specific to their industry. Allegheny Furniture needed an all-in-one software to run the operations, point of sale, accounting and online business. More importantly, the system had to be cost effective, while providing a superior customer experience.

TylerNet engineered a custom system to incorporate nearly every aspect of Allegheny Furniture’s business. Unlike other retail management software packages, TylerNet collaborated with Allegheny’s IT team to understand the expectations for the project, which were the following:

  • Retail management solution
  • Online sales
  • Custom programming
  • 24/7 support
  • Continuous improvements

Built and supported by TylerNet, the cost-effective system that helps them compete in their market. TylerNet’s team had met Allegheny’s expectations for a custom-developed system and continues to be tied to the success ot their business.

Challenges

Allegheny Consignment Furniture had a very specific need for a complex inventory management and point of sale system. Their blend of new and used furniture required them to deal with vendors in very different ways.

New furniture was purchased from wholesalers or factory-direct, which meant that there were many pieces from one vendor. For consigned furniture, each piece was owned by an individual, and there could be hundreds, or even thousands of people in the system. It was essential to separate them in the system, yet bring their sales together for accounting and reporting.

Allegheny needed a real-time inventory management software to accommodate the highly competitive market of online sales. Inventory for online sales had to be synchronized with showroom activity to provide the best customer experience. Unlike new furnishings, gently used pieces are one-of-a-kind, no longer being made, and can’t be ordered from the manufacturer. Customers understand when a piece is sold before they can purchase it, but will feel cheated when that same piece is sold to another person and they had already paid for it.

Allegheny needed their pricing schedule to be automated and consistent in the stores, as well as online. New merchandise has consistent pricing models, while consigned furniture has a markdown schedule. The price for each piece is reduced for every 30 days it is on the showroom floor.

A complete solution requires that all sales and inventory is tied into the general ledger. These transactions are complex and have multiple steps for reconciliation. The design of their system needed to reflect the payments made to vendors and consignors. Plus, it all must be done automatically and backed-up in the cloud for security and redundancy.

How TylerNet Designed Their Custom System

With over 35 years of experience, TylerNet has been an innovator within the retail management software industry. Their product and process has been integral toward the success of many retail businesses that have complex sales and operational environments. The entire TylerNet team was hands-on for the entire Allegheny Furniture project from concept-to-design, through implementation, and support with continuous improvements.

TylerNet understood the unique requirements and needs of a consignment store to create a customized software. All purchases had to be displayed in real time at the four brick and mortar stores and the online store. To do this, TylerNet worked closely with Allegheny to develop an all-in-one system with the following features:

  • Point of sale
  • Inventory management
  • Accounting
  • Consignor management
  • Customer deposits
  • Delivery
  • Purchase orders
  • Customer relationship management

Automation of these features increased employee productivity. Scheduled sales and inventory reports provided managers with up-to-date information to make informed business decisions. The system also gives an accurate P & L statement and daily cash flow.

Typically, a software system of this magnitude would be costly to develop and run. However, TylerNet’s experience and openness to work closely with Allegheny helped contain costs on the project and deliver excellent ROI. The system continues to be a cost-effective tool that is essential to their daily operations. Growth and success for TylerNet and Allegheny has fostered a professional relationship to last for many years to come.

Along with their robust online presence, Allegheny Furniture Consignment operates four stores in southern Pennsylvania and Delaware.

They also offer new bedding and other quality home furnishings.

Each showroom has one-of-a-kind and hard-to-find pieces for the perfect spot in your home.

Whether online or in the showroom, customer satisfaction is of the utmost importance.

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