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Best Framing Software POS, opinions please!!

Discussion in 'Software, Computers, CMC's Techie Stuff' started by Charbo, Dec 9, 2017.

  1. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

    Hello Grumblers...

    I will be opening a new frame/gift shop in February, Lord willing and the crick don't rise! I've been told to do myself a favor and use software for the framing industry. I need it to also accommodate the retail gift side as well, and be compatible with quickbooks. Would love to hear your thoughts and recommendations.
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  2. Cliff Wilson

    Cliff Wilson SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Not that it matters, but where will you be?

    You DEFINITELY should pick a Framing POS and use it.

    I use SpecialtySoft POS. I only use it for taking Framing orders, but others, like John Ranes, use it extensively for gifts.
    It has a published interface to transfer data to Quick Books, but I do it manually at the end of the day.

    The other two to look at in the US (hence the where question) are Lifesaver and FrameReady.

    There are pluses to all of them. You really should get the free demos from each of them and try them out.
    That is the only way you can figure out what works best for you.
    Mike Labbe likes this.
  3. Rick Granick

    Rick Granick SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Cliff's advice is spot-on. Everyone who replies here will probably cheerlead for whatever they use, so it really comes down to what will work well for you and what you are comfortable using.
    Having said that, I'm going to cheerlead for FrameReady. I resisted starting with a POS program for a long time because I have my own quirky ways of writing up my work orders, and doing other things. Once I overcame that and got FrameReady installed and up to speed, it made my life so much easier. I find it very intuitive to use, and the user support team there is top-notch. That's my experience, but get the free demos and see what you think. Best of luck with your new venture.
    :cool: Rick
  4. JFeig

    JFeig SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    When you say you want to interface with Quickbooks, are you wanting to interface with:
    inventory control
    customer data base
    or all ?
    Quickbooks also has a separate pos version.
  5. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    My framing business has used POS software since 1995, starting with FullCalc purchased from Larson-Juhl. Due to chronic problems with FullCalc's tech support at the time, we switched to FrameReady in 2000, and it is still in use today. We love it, but you should take the advice above and give at least the Big Three (FrameReady, LifeSaver, and SpeciatySoft) a fair trial before making such an important choice.

    We also use Quickbooks Pro for accounting. Quickbooks is supposed to be at least partially compatible with a few of the POS programs on the market, but in my personal experience, proprietary POS and accounting programs do not play well with others. Especially Quickbooks, which has always wanted to be a stand-alone program.
  6. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

  7. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

    I am in Maryland, when working in another shop, it was all charts and extensive updates by hand.

    I think the pos will end up paying for itself in the long run.

    Just more to choose from than I had expected!!

    Thanks for your input!

  8. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

  9. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

    Thank you Rick,

    I have been speaking with the FrameReady reps, but thought they were in Canada and didn't work with quickbooks?

  10. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

  11. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

    Thank you Jim....but now I'm wondering now if it's so imperative to have it interface with Quickbooks. I guess I was more concerned with the accounting aspect of it all, instead of taking the framing and inventory into more consideration.

    Ugh, and here I thought choosing the right underpinner and chopper was gonna be tough!!
  12. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

  13. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

    Yes to all...if that's even possible!! My accountant steered me away from QB Pos, stating it's best to go with a software from your industry, as most are too generic and don't offer enough modifications for your needs.
  14. Cliff Wilson

    Cliff Wilson SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I use QB for my accounting, but NOT my Customer Database OR invoices, or inventory (except at a COGs level)
    So, I enter every invoice that comes in and allocate each line item on the invoice to an account.
    Sales, Deposits applied, tax, etc are "bulk" entered at the end of every day.
    Before I go home each day, I look at the year-to-date P&L. that way I can see trends as they occur and react if need be.

    It's always nice to think you can get one tool to do everything, but I think you're better off finding the right tool for each job.
    Don't force something when it's not there.
  15. JFeig

    JFeig SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I did what Cliff does, one bulk entry at the end of the day.

    To my knowledge there is no package that DOES IT ALL.
  16. Mike Labbe

    Mike Labbe Member, Former moderator team volunteer

    Correct. Some claim to but I dont think they do to the extent people expect. We do exactly the same, and enter a batch total at the end of the day as a deposit in QB and use QB to write checks out to vendors. (Deposit CASH and Deposit BANKCARD VISA/MC/DISCOVER/AMEX/DEBIT/NFC Wireless) Those are the 2 things that will be on our bank statement, to balance against. The details and accounts receivable live in our frame shop's accounting program (lifesaver)
    Jim Miller and Rick Granick like this.
  17. Rick Granick

    Rick Granick SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Right. Not only that, the biggest advantages of using an industry-specific POS program are in keeping up with vendor changes, which you just download and install to keep your data current; and the ability to price custom framing according to your particular needs, and to calculate the price for the customer at the time the order is placed. Generic systems will not do either of these. You say that at your previous shop "it was all charts and extensive updates by hand". You wouldn't believe the countless hours of drudgery you will save by being able to download the latest vendor moulding updates and have them applied to the pricing formulas you have set up.
    :cool: Rick
    Mike Labbe likes this.
  18. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    We often go wrong by assuming what others perceive as beneficial, profitable, or even enjoyable.

    I mean, what if she extracts unbidden joy from "countless hours of drudgery"? Are you trying to wrest that from her? The key to living in harmony is recognizing that everyone has different pleasure and pain points.
    FM Framer and Jim Miller like this.
  19. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    You have a great sense of humor, David. :D

    I've never associated countless hours of drudgery with pleasure :p and pain :confused: points.
  20. Rick Granick

    Rick Granick SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Actually when those new moulding price booklets would show up, although "countless hours of drudgery" would ensue, I have to admit that it did trigger some mental acrobatics as well because I would run through a decision-making process comparing particular mouldings to similar offerings from other vendors and come up with pricing based on my evaluation of perceived value. In other words, just because a particular moulding might be a good value to purchase doesn't mean you have to sell it for a specific price based on your formula. If it is as nice as a similar moulding that sells for a few dollars more, why not make a little extra money, as the other one shows what the maket will bear for that style. I know we can tweak formulas or set prices individually on mouldings, but in reality I rarely do because I "trust" my formula. This probably means I'm leaving money on the table with some mouldings. That said, I do have a higher set price for vendors I use less frequently for chops, in order to recapture the shipping cost without necessarily being able to amortize it over several chops on one order.
    :cool: Rick
    David Waldmann likes this.
  21. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

    I can assure you, I get no unbidden joy from even a few hours of drudgery! ;-)
    David Waldmann likes this.
  22. Charbo

    Charbo Grumbler

    I've also been reading that sometimes in an export to QB's, if there is a return or discrepancy, It won't revert back to QB.....

    Now, I'm down to FrameReady and Specialty Soft....oh, and how about Fletcher 3000 vs Fletcher 3100?? I'm used to the 3000, but have a line on a 3100 at a decent price, just concerned about the changing out of cartridges vs just turning the dial.....and I lose things.....
  23. Cliff Wilson

    Cliff Wilson SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    We have both a 3100 and a 3000. I like the 3100 better, but they both work fine. Pick up one of those trays with the lip on the back that they make for pegboards and hang it on the front of the measuring rail far to the left. Put blade holders, spare blades, and an allen wrench in there. always easy to hand and not lost.
  24. Larry Peterson

    Larry Peterson PFG, Picture Framing God

    I also have the 3100. I bought it over the 3000 because I cut a lot of cardboard and cardboard dulls a blade real quick. Cut some cardboard and then cut some foam with the same blade and the foam will tear. I got an extra pillar post so I can change the blades quickly between my cardboard blade and my foam blade. Only takes about 5 seconds to change blades.
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